The Corona Phenomenon

I witness it all over Geneva.

This new corona phenomenon. It appears in minute pockets of happiness. One cannot help but notice the new scenes we never were privileged to before. Or, simply overlooked.

We realize the pandemic is not one to rejoice or embrace. We recognize the immeasurable loss of life which one cannot put a value. We realize there will be economic damage and implications for years. We realize people and their families are touched by an unprecedented period.

However, let us reduce speed, and look what is happening around us.

There is a reduction of the globe’s pace. Everyone has slowed down on this merry go round.

We view families walking together hand in hand in the parks.

I saw a father taking a guitar to play with his son towards the central park of Geneva, Parc de Betrand.

Ivory piano keys, untouched for months, are finally tickled. Music is flowing down from windows of grandiose apartment buildings to the sidewalks.

I see mothers holding their newborn babes, peaking off the terrace, looking for human interaction, and smiling at me as I promenade by with my Labrador.

There is a scarcity of people on the streets now, and we latch on to each other, even from a distance and exchange a simple non-committing ‘Bonjour.’ Albeit behind masks.

This never happened before, I thought to myself.

We are reminded of the fragility and the timeliness of life.

We are reminded that we were not and shall not be here always. Our lives are ephemeral.

We are reminded that this is our window frame of opportunity to make this world a bit softer. Just as the corona phenomenon has made us.

This is a snapshot of how it used to be in a much simpler time in Geneva, I imagine.

It reminds me of my childhood in nascent Israel in the 1970s when we had no toys, we had to create our own games in the yard with the neighborhood children. We only had one TV station, and those who were fortunate to own a television set, it was black and white. Truly.

I am reminiscent of those days now. Due to the corona phenomenon.

And it is not the worst place to be. To be with family. To be with oneself. To be stationary. Not in motion. Not missing a plane. Not waiting in line for the security at the airport. Just be. You are not missing anything anyhow.

There will be residuals from the corona phenomenon, just as there were after the 9/11. Stricter measures which we learned to get accustomed to. There will be residuals.

Let us also keep the positive remnants of the corona phenomenon of being with our loved ones, smiling to the stranger whom needs it most, looking out for one another, expanding our tolerance for the noisy kids in the yard, stretching out our hand.

Those you cherish, stay alive through your love within your heart. Those whom are still with you, cherish.

This never happened before, I thought to myself.

Let us keep the lessons of the corona phenomenon alive, even after the storm has passed.

Naava Mashiah is the CEO of ME LINKS, which was founded in 2003 in Israel and 2016 in Switzerland. ME LINKS provides wealth management services to ultra-high net worth families focusing on curated products including private equity, exclusive real estate and art services. Bringing UHNW clients globally together to invest in private equity and public markets, ME LINKS provides unparalleled service and off-market investment opportunities around the globe to their clients. Mashiah is the director of the Founders Kitchen LP, which is a private equity fund focused on Israeli disruptive tech and the founder of Waze of which Uri Levine is a leading partner. She is a former Israeli diplomat and has been active in economic cooperation in the MENA region for over 20 years. Mashiah is on the committee of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Friends of HUJ, and Swiss Romande. She is a founding member and executive board member of the Israeli-Palestinian Chamber of Commerce in Tel Aviv. She serves on the international Advisory Board of the Jerusalem Press Club and Mishkenot Shenannim Cultural Center in Jerusalem. She has published articles in numerous publications including Status magazine, Common Ground News and Daily News Egypt. She is the author of The Caliph's Favorite (2017) and Israel: Closing the Circle (2015).