Saturday, April 11, 2020

COVID-19 Quarantine Updates (Week 5)

Another week starting... We have at least two more weeks to go and most likely more.  While there once was talk that we would be slowly released starting at the end of April now that talk is no longer happening (from what it seems).  We know based on news reports that the president of Spain wants to extend the estado de alarma or state of alarm (that is mandating our lock down) until at least May 10th -- not creating a lot of optimism for us over here.

If you need a refresher on our past weeks -- week one here and week two here and week three here and week four here.

April 11, 2020 (Day 29)
Well it felt like we had been doing this lock down thing for four weeks today -- the day just dragged on and on.  Serafina woke up SUPER early to see if the mouse fairy came and was just hyped up all day with no place to go.  We did virtual egg dying with two of our very close friends here which was really fun.  Serafina had a blast and just wanted to keep dying all the eggs!  And I went to the grocery store this morning which was quite the experience... The Spanish stores were closed Thursday and Friday for part of Semana Santa so I knew today would be busy, but wow.  I walked which I am happy I did because police were checking every single car to prove that they lived in Rota (we heard that police were ALL over our province checking cars) -- it is a holiday weekend so they were making sure people weren't traveling to visit family or to their second homes (somehow sneaking past other checkpoints).  I knew I was fine since I was walking but it was intense.  The store was also doing a one in/one out so there was a decent size line outside.  And while in line, I watched a lady back into a parked police car -- oops. Once inside, it was busy but not terrible and I was able to get everything on my list.  And other than those two things, the day was LONG (and sadly one of our last sunny days for while).

And a fun little story from last night's 8PM applause -- Serafina hasn't quite figured out that we don't get to just go and chat with our neighbors during this time.  She constantly brings toys or drawings to show the neighborhood, especially with the neighbors right across the street.  And she's always asking me to tell them things, which I don't always know how to say it all in Spanish.  But last night after she lost her tooth she was SO excited to share with everyone that she lost her tooth.  So we were yelling across our street while Serafina had a BIG toothless grin showing everyone her lost tooth and that the mouse fairy was going to come (or in Spain -- it is Ratoncito).  The neighbors were all very excited for her :)

April 12, 2020 (Day 30)
Wow -- 30 days of barely leaving our house.  Serafina has not left the house/small yard since March 13th.  I know we are doing the right thing but it still makes me so sad to think about all that we (and especially Serafina) have missed the past 30 days.  Since it was a holiday weekend, we didn't get much news in the way of numbers or any thoughts on moving forward with loosening up our state of alarm -- so hopefully we will have more information tomorrow.

And Happy Easter everyone!  We had a very low key day at home and other than the Easter Bunny coming, it was a pretty typical Sunday (or typical for our lock down).  Serafina loved getting her gifts from the Easter Bunny and had a blast playing with her new toys and reading her new books.  Trevor and I cleaned up the house a little and then started the daunting task of cleaning out our basement storage area.  It needs to be done so might as well do it now!  We also had video chats with our families which is always fun.  Overall a good day.
We have lived in our house for four years and while we are friendly with all of our neighbors, we do not know them very well at all.  Some of the people on our street work on base so we tend to be more friendly with those families as we will see them in town and on base, but we don't talk much past the "hello, how are you" type conversations.  We are only one of two American families that live on our street (so everyone else is Spanish).  With our 8PM applause, we can easily see five other houses.  And every single night we get excited as we wave to all of our neighbors and they wave back.  And while I have no idea of anyone's name -- I feel closer to my neighbors that I see every single night than I probably should.  I seriously think the first person I will hug when we are allowed too will be the lady across the street from us.  She seems to be the abuela of the neighborhood and I cannot wait to learn her name.

April 13, 2020 (Day 31)
Another good day.  I have been trying to stay positive as this lock down drags on and on (or so it seems).  Cleaning out the basement storage area is a daunting task but it is keeping us going... Now if only we could get rid of the LARGE pile of things we need to donate.  We all still have our moments of negativity/being completely over it all but that is all normal and to be expected.

We still don't know what Trevor's schedule will look like moving forward for the rest of the lock down (however long it is).  He is fighting to work from home to keep himself and us safe.  Today various industries went back to work in Spain -- those that cannot work from home (such as construction workers).  It worries us that case numbers will start to rise again but hopefully not as numbers lately have been really good (both for deaths and new case numbers).

Trevor did have to go into work today (and managed to get me bleach and disinfectant spray (best husband ever!)) so Serafina and I did our usual morning activities just us -- mom school, so many art projects, reading so many books, all the puzzles.  More cleaning out of the basement and other places in the house.  Serafina has enjoyed playing with every single toy/item we pull out.

More about our 8PM applause -- the abuela across the street and the lady next to her are very close friends; I would bet they have known each other for years.  They go to the grocery store together and go walking together almost every morning.  It was fun when I was training for my half marathon, I would see them walking on the boardwalk and they would cheer me on!  I can only imagine that they miss each other terribly.  So on many nights after the applause has ended they stay out on their front porches chatting over their walls.  The abuela showing off her new grandson to her friend across the wall, it is so sweet and also so heartbreaking.

April 14, 2020 (Day 32)
I know I have said this before but it seems very surreal to be writing day 32.  I always knew this lock down would last longer than the original two weeks but it still seems so weird that we have been in lock down for a month and it has become our new normal.  I know it is the right thing to do, but I can still not like it.  Well, I love the time with Serafina and Trevor (most of the time -- ha) and the time to slow down and organize and just be... But I also desperately miss my friends and my time to myself and all the things we are missing, especially the things Serafina is missing (school, friends, Spanish language).  My very close friend here had her baby five days into this whole ordeal and obviously I have not met her new baby.  In fact, I cannot even bring her food because she lives in the next town over.  And that part I hate.

Another day.  Trevor had to go into the office this afternoon for a phone meeting so Serafina "helped" me continue to clean out the basement.  She was more interested in playing with all her baby toys but at least it kept her entertained.  She continues to rock mom school -- learning more and more in English but of course I am so sad that she is probably losing Spanish (although she did yell across the street at our neighbors tonight so hopefully not).

showing her stuffed animals to our neighbors across the street during our applause
Nothing new to report or add to our 8PM applause.  It only lasts 3-5 minutes but it sure is uplifting and we look forward to it every single day.

April 15, 2020 (Day 33)
Another decent day.  Trevor again had to go into work in the afternoon for a phone meeting so Serafina and I again cleaned out the basement -- we have officially gone through everything and now have two massive piles: one to keep + figure out how to place back into the storage area and the other to donate (somehow).  We had a late start to the day as everyone slept terribly thanks to a HUGE storm that rolled through, waking all of us in the middle of the night with loud thunder.  Serafina and I started our morning with PE with Joe who does live workouts for kids at 10AM our time which was really fun, although Serafina was mad there were no burpees.  Crazy child.
The Spanish government is expected to vote tomorrow on yet another extension of our estado de alarma but hopefully with some easing up on restrictions (one can only hope).  There was also a spike in case numbers BUT it is because late last week Spain deployed roughly 2 million "rapid tests" for COVID throughout the country so more testing in being done.  Our region of Andalucía also had a spike in numbers but it is because of the increasing in testing as well as the regional government has tested many people on the front lines and those caring for the elderly, even if they show no symptoms.  Our regional government is now reporting asymptomatic cases.  The good news is that there are more people who have antibodies against COVID but in does skew the daily data for our area.  We are all still hopeful that there is a downward trend. 

And another early post because we are all going to bed after our 8PM applause.

April 16, 2020 (Day 34)
Today was just... well, it was long.  So many tantrums and meltdowns, from all of us.  We miss our friends, we miss our old lives, we had a day where we were just over it.  And that is perfectly normal and completely fine.  Serafina desperately wants to go see her friends and told us she "would cover her mouth and wear a mask and be safe from the germs."  Broke my heart.  The positive for the day is that we finished the basement. There is a HUGE pile that needs to be donated in the middle of the storage area but the rest is all organized -- we have now officially cleaned out/organized every section of the house... and have many more days of lock down to go.  So not sure what my next project will be.  Ideas are welcome.

No pictures today.  No mom school either, wasn't worth the battle.  Numbers still aren't great, another slight increase.  I am hoping that it is because of the increase in testing, but who knows.  Tomorrow is a new day and hopefully a better one.

April 17, 2020 (Day 35)
The end of our 5th week.  With no real end in sight :(  The Spanish government now won't vote on an extension or loosening our restrictions until sometime next week.  Maybe this is good news though as the current estado de alarma is set to extend on the 26th of April.  We also learned that Andalucía isn't the only region that is adding asymptomatic cases to their number count each day and that some regions have added deaths into the count that occurred weeks ago but are just now being added as COVID deaths after more data and research is coming out... Or so I understand if I am reading all the articles correctly.  But from what I am understanding, is that this is what is causing the spike in numbers and hopefully things even out soon... Hopefully.

Trevor had to go into work again today (this time to get a laptop so he can officially work from home), but he will probably still have to go in at least once a week.  Basically we are taking it one day at a time since it changes so much.  But it meant that Serafina and I had a day to ourselves.  Which is always fun and hard.  The morning started with more PE with Joe.  We did a lot of mom school since Serafina was completely into it -- she has finally gotten the concept of rhyming and it is all she wants to do which is pretty cute.  But she is learning that English words that do rhyme don't rhyme in Spanish so it is still a little confusing for her.  She also let me braid her hair (I had to bribe her).  I have been playing with various braiding styles on my hair out of boredom with my LONG hair so I wanted to practice on Serafina -- she finally let me!

Our 8PM applause was fun tonight -- we spend a few extra minutes chatting with our neighbors across the street (in Spanish of course), Serafina was drawing them pictures.  It was pretty adorable. 

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