Stories from real people, not the media.
I had asked friends, family and social media contacts to send me their stories about 'being weeks in isolation and lock down'. Are you still patient? Angry? Frustrated? How is your business doing? The kids? I had asked "Tell me YOUR story". And here are the answers, great, inspiring. Different. Enjoy reading stories from Spain, France, Germany, Ireland, USA, Sweden, Mexico, UK .I would like to thank everyone sending their interesting inside views. These are real stories, no selected media point of view.
Meet the O'Grady Family in Mexico Los O'Gradys in Mexico.
A family of five--my husband, myself, our 15-year-old boy/girl twins and our rescued pup Luna Love live in the state of Nayarit just north of Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco.
We have been isolating at home now for over a month, going out only for groceries, banking, pharmacy and veterinary needs. My husband runs these errands alone every 8 to 10 days to minimize trips and therefore exposures.
When he arrives home I disinfect every single item--every package, every piece of fruit and vegetable. It is a laborious and tedious task, but well worth the peace of mind and added safety for my family. My Spotify podcasts keep me good company during the hour or two it takes to do this necessary step--there might be a glass of wine involved too!
At the Nayarit/Jalisco state line there is a police/military/firefighter checkpoint looking to see that buses, cars and taxis are not overcrowded. They are performing health checks when/if needed and confiscating alcohol being brought from Jalisco to Nayarit as there is a dry law in order in our state of Nayarit.
At supermarkets, hand sanitizer is given upon entrance and there are floor markers in the aisles to remind people to stay separated by a minimum of six feet.
Grocery store employees are masked and many are gloved up. At the checkout counters, there are again more signs reminding customers to maintain physical distance. The cashiers are behind plexiglass barriers for their protection. Schooling for our children has been online since mid March and likely will be for the rest of the academic year. Most banks have closed. For the few that are open, there is an employee at the door dispensing hand sanitizer, checking for masks and monitoring the amount of people allowed in at any given time. No mask, no entry.
There is a very real fear of the economy completely imploding since so much of it is based on tourism and condo or timeshare sales in our area. There is a marked reduction in road traffic and gasoline prices have dropped by almost 25%. Small businesses have closed down, some likely permanently. Companies are mandated to pay their employees. An acquaintance of ours shared that he had two more weeks or so of salary and after that, he had no idea what he would do. The only thing he knew for certain is that his company would be out of money and that without the Mexican government stepping in to help his employees there would be no money for them. Face masks are mandatory and individuals 60 and older are not being allowed in stores. Our 72-year-old neighbor was just turned away yesterday at Home Depot and many other seniors have shared on local FB groups that they have not been allowed entrance into grocery stores. A local ER doctor and pulmonologist at a regional hospital says they are treating many people for pneumonia with increasing fatalities. He said all patients presenting with pneumonia symptoms are being treated as if they had COVID-19 because tests have not been readily available.
A nearby luxury hotel had a family visiting from another state for Semana Santa and they were confirmed as being ill with COVID-19. Nayarit State Police locked down the entire hotel and quarantined 200+/- guests. Within a few days, a helicopter landed on the beach in front of the hotel and a family jumped in and left the hotel. It was big news on local social media.
Some towns are paying very serious attention to minimizing exposures, while others are reportedly going about life as if nothing has changed.
Sayulita and San Pancho, for example, have community staffed checkpoints and they are not allowing non-residents into their communities. Even people that work in those communities are having difficulty getting to their jobs and generally have to provide proof that their job is considered essential. Those who do take this seriously are doing so because they know that the medical system here will be overwhelmed if they all get sick.
Public beaches are closed and malecons are fenced off with Guarda Nacional patrolling them. Governors are making decisions state by state on what they feel is best based on the information they are receiving.
IMSS (the social medicine that services much of Mexico) doctors and support staff are talking about striking because the Federal Government is not providing them with protective equipment.They are very serious about it and their intent is to not die to save others.
As for my family, we are doing our best to keep our spirits up, get some outside time and fresh air in the safety of our yard, eat well, rest, tend to the house and school work of our children. We are cooking, eating and cleaning a lot, on screens way too much, and grateful for our health and well-being.
We pray for and are manifesting the best for all, that when we do reintroduce ourselves into the world--whatever that looks like--that we do so individually and collectively in a thoughtful, socially and environmentally conscious and sustainable way.
Mother Earth always has the first and last word.
Katie O'Grady Los O'Gradys in Mexico