I thought I might have overdone the tennis when I woke up yesterday morning (but despite that, I still plan to overdo it again next week!) so whilst Jan was on his usual run, I went back to my old ritual of a bit of Bollywood to warm up, then the 7 App, and then 40 minutes of cycling, which had the desired effect of my being able to walk normally for the rest of the day (although not completely, as after a break from the bike for a while, my bum seems to have gone a bit soft – and is now quite painful again. Blimey. How do you guys (you know who you are) manage to cycle for hours at a time?)! Anyway, apart from that, it was a lovely day as we went out for lunch – this time with FRIENDS!
Going out required a bit of driving, which was also nice, since to date we have only ventured around the corner to the tennis club, or a couple of times to the supermarket (we are still trying to walk to one of them each day, but it is just so easy to be lazy and hop in the van!). The restaurant we went to was one that we had never been to before, the other side of Marbella on the main road towards Malaga (this road used to be called the ‘road of death’ as it had more fatalities on a short stretch than anywhere else in Europe, so not one of my favourites to drive on!), and next door to the famous beach club, Nikki Beach (possibly one of the reasons why the road was so notorious…..). That in itself was a bit depressing as it was completely closed up and, without all the noise, beautiful people, music and so on, it looked a bit sad and shabby. Yet again, we are left wondering if things will ever be the same again (not that I was ever much of a fan of it, but still…).
The restaurant that we went to, however, (unimaginatively called ‘the Beach House’….), was great, and restored our faith in eating out – an absolutely beautiful setting on the beach (with no-one on it, of course), friendly staff (in masks, but managing a lot better than last week), great food, and the absolute pleasure of sitting and talking to other people for hours (5, actually!)! If it hadn’t been for the masks, the empty beach and a few little things (for example the now ever-present disinfectant for just about everything) it was just like old times.
In view of the very long lunch, by the time we got back it was already early evening and since we weren’t that bothered about dinner, we went out a bit earlier for our usual walk on the beach, bumping into (not literally, obviously – we now keep our 2 metre distance without even thinking about it or needing a stick!) quite a few people we knew, all making the most of the wonderful weather and enjoying the relatively quiet beach and walk, since it won’t be for much longer! Tomorrow, Monday, we go into ‘Phase 2’ of the easing out of lockdown, which means, most importantly for us, being able to swim in the pool, exercising whenever we want, the majority of shops and restaurants opening without restriction and, amazingly, the beaches being open! The excitement is almost too much!
Tempering that excitement, though, is some of the political and other jiggery pokery that is going on and that has prompted me to rant on Twitter quite a lot over the last couple of days. First, the news that a Belgian prince flew in a few days ago (presumably on his own plane, aka Djokovic) to go to some big party and without knowing (apparently) that he has the virus – the consequence of that being that most of the people at the party also caught it, and the figures for new infections in our area (which had been on 0), have therefore shot up… and the consequence of that being mass hysteria on both the Andalusian FB page and from some of the government (Sanchez is now talking about extending the state of alarm for yet another two weeks – for God’s sake!!!). (N.B. I thought it would be nice to include a photo of the Belgian prince here, but when I Googled him, the headline that came up was ‘Kinky Belgian prince attends illegal party in Spain – now that has piqued my interest – so no photo, but clearly I need to find out more!).
And then the news that the Czech Republic is planning to bring in some sort of ‘traffic light’ system, whereby people from countries that are ‘green’ will be able to come and go into the CR as they please, whilst amber will have some restrictions, and red may not be allowed in at all – and guess which ones are red – yes, amongst others outside of Europe, Spain and Italy. Which is completely ridiculous since according to the latest figures, these two countries have the fewest deaths and number of infections (despite the Belgian prince) of anyone. Added to that, I would suggest, it was all the horror of the early days in Italy and Spain that prompted countries like the CR to lock down early and thus avoid the same situation and then not needing to go into the same sort of hard lockdown as them – but that was then – now, as I keep on saying, people coming from Spain and Italy must be the least risk imaginable.
Whether all of the above means that we won’t, in the end, get back to the CR in the next few weeks, I don’t know… but what I do know is that whatever one country does to another is sure to be reciprocated, so if the CR blocks people arriving in from Spain (and Italy), I imagine that people from the CR will also be blocked from coming here… and that will mean, most annoyingly, a reduction in flights between the two countries. Since I can’t help thinking that none of this really has anything to do with the safety of people, but more to do with money, politics and power, it will be interesting to see how the CR (and other countries) plans to deal with the UK….. for sure, Spain and the CR will be wanting the tourists and investment that usually comes in from the UK…. but, on the other hand, England has nearly the highest death toll and infection rate in the world…. with not much chance of it improving (see the photo of one of the English beaches this last weekend and compare it to ours here!) so presumably it will have to be a ‘red light country. Hmmmm. We will be watching!
Ooof. Sorry. That was a long old rant – possibly because today, Sunday, it has been pouring with rain (quite incredibly) and that has reminded us just how difficult it was in the early days and what everyone had to go through to get to the stage that Spain is in now. But hopefully, by the time 15th June comes around (when, it is said, the whole of the EU is supposed to be open for each other (just not sure that those in the CR have read that….!)) it will all be resolved.
Actually, it has been quite nice not to be in the heat today – for the last morning, we were up early to run (when it was still sunny) but by the time we got back we could see that the weather wasn’t going to be good, and that prompted us to get on with a load of things that have been mounting up (and have been ignored in all the sunshine), including some real work as well as things around the house (since, still, no maid… !). But the sun will be back from tomorrow. As will I!