Saturday, May 30, 2020

COVID-19 Quarantine Updates (Week 11)

I really don't know when I will end these updates -- maybe when the estado de alarma is finally lifted (which I believe is set to happen at the end of June).  But it is not ending in the next two weeks, so you have at least have two more of these as the government agreed to yet another estado de alarma which was expected.  The state of alarm allows for the slow reopening of everything, so it makes sense to continue it as needed.  Because from what I understand, as long as the state of alarm is in place, the government can mandate the slow opening of things (which is a good thing).    

A few people asked how eating out was so I thought I would touch a little on what it is like...  Two weeks ago we entered into Phase 1 which meant restaurants could open with many precautions and only for outdoor seating at 30% capacity.  One of our favorite restaurants opened up in Rota so a small group of girlfriends and I made reservations to finally go out and eat dinner.  At the restaurant, we obviously sat outside at a table that had been completely disinfected, including the chairs (everything was cleaned after a table was done eating).  There was only one menu, taped to the table in order to easily disinfect.  Waiters wore gloves + mask, but we did not wear masks at the table (seeing as we were eating and all).  Many places have fully closed their indoor access (including bathrooms) -- this restaurant did allow us inside to pay but hand sanitizer was placed outside the door, one person in at a time and of course masks on.  It felt so good to get out but also still so weird....  

If you need a refresher on our past weeks -- 
week one here and week two here and week three here and week four here and week five here and week six here and week seven here and week eight here and week nine here and week ten here.

We officially entered (our small province at least) into Phase 2 on Monday.  Basically it means more places can open up -- all at reduced capacity (nothing over 50%), we can gather in groups of up to 15 AND the beaches in our town have opened again but social distancing is still required everywhere as well as masks are required whenever you can't socially distance.  Our family will still keep our groups smaller and will continue to make choices that best keep our family safe and healthy, but I also trust that the Spanish government is doing a wonderful job at safely opening up the country.  Numbers continue to be the low, and our small province of Cadiz saw three days in a row with NO new cases (or hospitalizations or deaths -- very good news).  

We also ventured out as a family for the first time this week, something we used to do all the time.  It felt really normal but also really hard because it was so obvious of the world we are now living in -- social distancing, masks, gloves, etc.  We went to Jerez (the closest larger city) to do some shopping for needed items that we have been unable to find online (or that won't actually get to us anytime soon).  Sadly, Serafina has gotten really used to wearing her mask, using hand sanitizer and not touching anything outside our house -- we have really drilled it in to her.  We are explaining things in a way that makes sense for her (and often taking her lead when she comes up with reasons why we have to wear masks or gloves), but also teaching her that this may be the new normal for awhile so she needs to learn the new way of life.  We have been really impressed with her abilities to adapt but we can also see the toll it is taking on her, not being in school, not being around kids each day and figuring out how all of these new changes affect her and more...  
Each phase  lasts a minimum of two weeks, so moving into next week we won't have any new things loosening or whatnot.  We are hoping to get to the beach as a family one of these days if the weather cooperates (it has not been cooperating -- so SO windy).  So now it is just getting used to this new normal and hoping things keep going in the right direction of lower and lower case numbers each day...

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