Days in Lockdown: 38 to 40

Day #38 1 Day more in lockdown = I Day Less in lockdown.

Well sunshine after rain was definitely what we wanted and exactly what we got. Today the weather has been gorgeous.

Shame I had to get up for work this morning. Especially as today I was ‘requested’ to take a voluntary pay cut until the end of the year, to ensure my fellow work colleagues do not lose their jobs, and so that no Giant Pandas or other cuddly and endangered species are executed. That last bit may not be strictly true, but they might as well have added that extra nugget of emotional blackmail.

Of course, when considering my response, I need to remember that these are unprecedented times and I am lucky to still be working in any capacity. The letter continued. And it’s true. Not much point in being awkward about it. I need to look at the bigger picture and act responsibly.

I responded by irresponsibly taking the rest of the day off to enjoy the sunshine. I fired up the BBQ and over a couple of beers contemplated the bigger picture.

Actually, I pondered over the fact that Mr Kipling cake sales have increased majorly during the pandemic, and how that can’t possibly be down to me alone. Perhaps it’s the same people apparently not drinking during the lockdown? Maybe I should go and work for him? Sorry; my mind easily wanders and becomes sidetracked. Now where was i?

Salary Cut. Despite the fact I will most certainly will, I can’t really complain. So many people have not been able to work for over a month now. Many have lost their jobs and for many self-employed, there will have been no money coming in. I know that we are very fortunate.

Besides, any salary reduction is currently more that netted out by the fact Jo can’t go out and spend any money at the shops. As I say; we are very, very fortunate.

Day #39

I started the day with a new-found enthusiasm and brighter outlook. Another lovely sunny day here - could the atrocious weather we’ve been having since the lockdown began, finally be turning? Maybe this is just the start of brighter things – nicer weather and a relaxing of the sanctions next week which will allow Archie and other children under 14 years of age, to go outside and exercise. Although to be honest, it’ll be almost impossible to keep him in whatever the weather.

Sadly, our hopes were severely dashed by late afternoon. The long-awaited announcement on the exact conditions which children would be allowed out wasn’t far short of devastating. The new ‘relaxed’ rules state that children may accompany a parent on trips that they are already permitted to do. Which here, is pretty much nothing – shopping for essential items, bank and pharmacy. And remember that only one adult is allowed to do this under normal circumstances, so it’s not exactly a family outing. My poor son has not been out of the house for nearly SIX WEEKS! And yet our neighbours bloody yappy dog goes out several times a day.

I’ve been 100% behind Spain’s approach to the isolation. Although some might find the harsh restrictions somewhat draconian, we’ve been happy to be on full lockdown, and have all felt much safer here because of that.

But this latest decision just does not make any sense. Being on full lockdown means that pretty much the only place we could catch coronavirus is at the shop. So why would we want to take our children there?

And of course, we are meant to drive whenever we can and as infrequently as possible, so I’m not quite seeing where exercise or fresh air comes into it. Add to that the fact that trying to get young children to wear gloves and a facemask and to keep to a safe social distance in a shop without touching or licking anything after six weeks of being cooped up will be near on impossible. I struggle myself some days. Particularly with the licking part.

So, we won’t be taking Archie to the shops. Which means he will most likely remain indoors until at least ‪the 10th May‬, when the next period of lockdown is reviewed. A total of eight weeks, or two months.

I’m not writing any more today. We’ve already, stupidly with hindsight, told Archie that he could start briefly going outside next week for short walks. We thought it would give him something to focus on and to look forward to. I’m quickly learning that the only thing you can be certain of during this lockdown, is nothing is certain. So I now need to break the news to him that this won’t be happening. If you hear a breaking sound, that could well be his little heart...

Day #40

The only thing you can be certain of during this lockdown, is nothing is certain.

Later last night, following lots of angry comments on social media and irate banging of pots and pans on balconies right across Spain, the Government made a U-turn and announced that children under 14 years of age would be allowed out for exercise from next week after all. Excuse me why I perform my ‘Archie is going out for a walk soon’ dance.

We wait with bated breath for the exact rules and conditions that will be applied. We assume facemasks will be compulsory, and the Government has already set the maximum retail price for them at 96 cents.

We imagine also that only one parent will be allowed to accompany the child when out. Although this has yet to be confirmed, on this basis, and to avoid any marital disharmony, we are hurriedly formulating a rota which must also incorporate taking the rubbish out, so that this once favourite and privileged task does not suddenly become neglected.

We can only guess at how far or for how long we can take him out for. We assume it’s will not be as relaxed as the UK. But all this is still fantastic news. I feel for those without children (or dogs), but this is still hopefully a first positive step forward for all of us and further sanctions will be relaxed as time goes on.

The Guardia Civil have produced certificates to give to the children to award them for being good and staying inside for all this time. It’s certainly well deserved.

I think us adults need one too. It’s been an emotional few days.

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