The disease originated through a Novel Corona virus, COVID-19, that was first discovered in Wuhan, China, in last December (2019). We are all well aware that it is now rapidly spreading around the world. Here’s a story of Tarik Dobbs, a twenty three year old creative writing graduate student at the University of Minnesota, who found aide through a person he met on Grindr.
Tarik is also a teaching assistant, and he was spending time with his friend at a book tour, when he suddenly fell suspiciously ill. “I just started feeling really achey and tired and I felt feverish,” he told BuzzFeed News.
He started to consult with online doctors. He better give the COVID-19 corona disease test, suggested one of them.
Currently Minnesota has above 100 confirmed cases of this disease, based on the data from Johns Hopkins University. Dobbs walked all the way to the emergency centre himself, because there were no cars to take him. After patiently waiting in isolation for hours, Dobbs he was able to give the test.
“It was really unpleasant and very strange,” he said of the experience.
Tarik has been quarantining along with his two roommates at home, while waiting for his corona test results, since his trip to the doctor’s. He still does not a have clue about his test results, even after two weeks.
How did they meet?
“The worst day was probably yesterday,” on Friday he said to Buzzfeed. “My fever was like 103 so I’m just riding it out.”
Dobbs did what every bored quarantined young gay man would. He started using Grindr.
“I have a boyfriend but we both use Grindr for friends and chat,” he explained. “With quarantine, everyone is on Grindr now of course.”
He heard the now familiar notification sound of a Grindr message arrival on Sunday — this one was from a 50 year old man.
Dobbs has the username “Bernie 2020”, on Grindr, since he is a Bernie Sanders fan. The man started his messaging to Dobbs with a, “Hi, Bernie”. ” He was really sweet and he was asking how I’m doing,” Dobbs recalled. “I was like, ‘First of all, we shouldn’t be hanging out. There is a pandemic and I’m literally waiting for my COVID results.” The conversation took a wild turn at this revelation from Dobbs. He started showering Dobbs — whom he was addressing as Bernie — with queries about the symptoms. This was after he explained that he’s an ex doctor.
Dobbs has a congenital birth defect. To test whether this man was legit, he sent a photo of his hands and asked him to identify it. The man was immediately able to tell that Dobbs has Poland Syndrome, which gives asymmetry on one side of his body.
Gary the help angel amidst corona:
“He was very concerned,” Dobbs said. “He was asking if I had enough medication and if my family was looking after me.”
The man decided to help him when Dobbs explained his low-income family background that lived miles away.
“He said, ‘You need a team, so I want to be part of that team and be an advocate for you,'” Dobbs explained.
The man had a chat with BuzzFeed News on Saturday. Dr. Gary is a retired pediatrician, who is fifty five years old. “I have a hard time trying to stay out of doctor mode,” he said in his messages to Dobbs.
“I felt bad for him and he didn’t have any food and there was no one there to help him,” Gary said. “To me, it seemed like a no-brainer.”
Gary did something most of us would never.
Gary showed up at Dobbs’ door with some of food, which Dobbs had wished for, two days later. He did try to hit the supermarket that night but it was shut down. Gary improvised and alternatively brought supplies from his home: eggs, yogurt that is homemade, four pears, many granola bars, a tomato, apples and rhubarb compote. He even got Dobbs a serving of balsamic asparagus and poached salmon that Gary had prepared earlier.
“I had stocked up so much food I was prepared for a nuclear holocaust,” Gary explained, “so I just pulled some stuff out of the fridge.”
Dr. Gary and Dobbs stood at a safe distance apart and spoke over a screen door, never coming in contact with each other. “I could only see him from a distance,” said Gary. “I had no protective clothing.”
Dobbs told that the entire exchange was not long, but long enough to become a memory. “First he saw me through the door and said, ‘Oh, you don’t look so sick,'” told Dobbs, “and then a minute later he said, ‘Oh,’ and he got kind of quiet and sad.”
Dobbs gratefully accepted the food and thanked Gary. They then went their separate ways.
But Gary called out, “Good luck, Bernie”, as he walked back to his vehicle.
“I was a little moved,” Gary explained to BuzzFeed News, “as I am now when I think about it.”
Be Home, Be safe:
This story is truly inspiring and sets an example to all of us, on how to be responsible human beings. People need people, and at such times of pandemic, it’s up to us to care, protect and save each other. We need to take all the precautions to prevent the corona disease from spreading like fire. Do not panic, keep your hands clean and maintain social distancing for yours and the good of others. Stay indoors as much as possible and do not consider pandemic infused leaves as holidays instead.