Because I teach English to students in China, I’ve had many first hand conversations about the lockdown that started over there in January and have watched as the virus progressed across the world. I think most people felt sorry for the Chinese and didn’t really think back in January that we would all be where we are now.
Spain has been hit hard as you will have seen in the news, initially around Madrid and in Northern Spain, but it is inevitably spreading to all parts, despite this being our third week of lockdown. Apparently the rate of infections is slowing but the death rate will continue to increase for some time yet.
And so now it’s on our doorstep. There’s an old people’s home in the village, and when I ventured out for food last week I saw a military vehicle going in, and in recent days there has been serious disinfecting going on around the village – and we found out why – there are multiple cases amongst the residents and staff. This is so sad – we have seen many care homes around Spain being decimated by the virus, and I really hope the residents and staff will be ok.
Even more worrying are signs locally that people are getting lockdown weary. I went out for food yesterday to our nearest larger town, Alhama, and loads of people were out shopping without masks or gloves, and ignoring the social distancing rules. I made sure we now have enough food to keep us going for several weeks – meat we can do without, and we get eggs daily from the chickens. We buy our veg from the local market each week, but all markets were closed at the start of the lockdown, so my lovely veg lady, Alexandra, has offered to bring my order into the village each week – a much better option and less risky than the supermarket. The plan now is to hole up for as long as possible so we can avoid food shopping in supermarkets. We might be eating veg with butter beans and chickpeas for some time to come!
The lockdown over here has tighter regulations than other countries currently have – we can only go out for food and medicines, and all non essential businesses and shops are closed. The postal system is barely operational now too. It does me wonder how things will be in another few weeks – the world has changed so much in such a short space of time. I realise how lucky I am still being able to work and earn a few quid, although it has been quieter in the last week as life starts to return to normal for people in China – having been indoors for so long they’re all desperate to get back out and about again.
The weather is actually disrupting our day to day lives more than the lockdown – it has rained for weeks now, but hopefully, if the forecast is right (!), we’re at the end of this unseasonably bad spell, which means we can crack on with the jobs that need doing outside! We have actually joked that the Government ordered in this weather to make people stay in!
I guess all we can do today is sit in front of the fire with a good book!