Grendelstaat? that is the one possible translation of lockdown in Afrikaans (inperking is another), while kwarantyn is the Afrikaans word for quarantine. Yep, it is day 94787 and we have been at a state of inperking just over a month. What do the stats say? there are 2 832 454 cases worldwide with 197 342 deaths. The USA still leads the charts: 925 758 cases with 52 217 deaths and I am afraid that the death toll for the USA is going to keep on rising for a number of reasons; denial being one of the biggest. The UK has 143 464 cases and 19 506 deaths so far.

Since my last diatribe there have been many developments. One of the bigger issues we still sit with is that the PPE that is crucial to the safety of workers on the ground is still insufficient and fingers are being pointed at everybody. The fact is that we are woefully and inadequately prepared for this pandemic, and had it been an Ebola type situation we would be in serious brown smelly stuff. Even the army is shocked at how bad the situation is. The papers are still giving way too much airtime to vapid celebs and their ilk, and of course the adverts for overpriced designer crap continues. Outside the weather is glorious although the mornings have been cold. At work we all received a letter from the site director explaining were we sat and thanking us for our work. Our small department is flooded with work for the next 3 weeks and we are going to be very busy for quite some time.  Kudos to the company where I work for helping to keep our workplace safe. The number of businesses that will not be re-opening once normality returns is rising steadily, and shopping patterns may never return to normal (or what appears to be normal). The effect of the corona virus on the UK economy is going to be with us for a long time. 

An interesting article appeared online regarding the number of corona virus cases in the Cheltenham area following the Cheltenham Festival from March 10-13. There was a distinct spike in the number of infections in the areas around the racecourse; many of my co-workers live in and around Cheltenham but I do not know if any were infected. The map also showed that there were no infections in the GL20 postal code region.  This can change at any minute. 

The other effect that will be felt is that people with life threatening diseases or illnesses are not going to see their doctors and their treatment has been cancelled to concentrate on the pandemic. I know that trying to get an appointment locally is difficult during normal times, it is probably impossible now and I sincerely hope that I do not have to see a doctor because if it is something dangerous I will die in my bed. 

Back in South Africa I watched the President address the nation and once again he was a picture of calm re-assurance in-spite of his fumbling with a face mask at the end of the address. The numbers for South Africa are: 4220 cases and 79 deaths and there may be a slight lifting of the lockdown as of next month. One of the most visible casualties of the pandemic is SAA. It is now in a terminal spiral and may end up not emerging on the other side. The airline has been like a large hole that money was poured into. Money that would have better been used on the poor and homeless.  South Africa has a number of these huge holes and they go through tax money like crazy. Unfortunately South Africa has many social problems and many communities are borderline cases that live from hand to mouth and the line between food riots and normality is very fine. As usual though people have been busted with their hands in the till (or food parcels) and I hope that they do get the punishment they deserve.       

Unfortunately once again the sabres are being rattled between the USA and Iran. As if we don’t have enough problems in the world as it is.  

That’s a wrap for today. I will add in anything as I remember it. Keep safe.

DRW © 2020. Created 25/04/2020.

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