Isolation: perspectives during COVID-19

Here’s a fascinating look at social isolation from two perspectives. What makes it possible for one man to live in a cave all alone and another to crave being around others?

“A tale of two isolations

“More than 1,000 km apart, a filmmaker and the subject of his film contend with the methods and meanings of solitude.”

isolation

by Mathieu Orcel

“I take the last flight out of Paris before the borders close, travelling to Argentina to shoot the second half of a film that is two years in the making – the story of Pedro Luca, an 83-year-old who has lived in a cave by himself for longer than I have been alive.

But as I land in Buenos Aires, the city goes into lockdown.

“Suddenly, I am as isolated as Pedro – him in a cave in the middle of the Tucuman mountains; me hundreds of miles away in an apartment on the second floor of a concrete block, with a small balcony as my only window to the world.

“It takes me two days to fully realise that: 1) I am not going to be able to see anyone and 2) I am not going to be able to film either, at least not in the normal way. There I am, alone in my urban jungle, like a caged cougar.

“More than 1,300km (850 miles) away in the wilderness, Pedro has his own cougar to worry about – the mountain lion stalking his surroundings and picking off the goats whenever it gets hungry.

“Cougars for Pedro, coronavirus for city dwellers – we are all faced with our predators, our fears, and our instincts.”

Click here to read this article at Al Jazeera in its entirety.

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