It’s been quite a week around here.
What with the Coronavirus arriving in Spain and all.
Humble public servant that I am, I’d like to make sure everyone is as informed as possible about the virus.
Of course, none of this is actual medical advice.
And by all means, you shouldn’t take health advice from bloggers. Take it from randos on a Facebook group, instead.
So without further ado…
Sunday: Coronavirus in Italy
Gone are the innocent days of around 3 weeks ago when people thought Coronavirus was something you’d get from drinking Corona, the Mexican beer.
Also gone, the days of the virus being some faraway thing, happening half a world away.
Apparently a bunch of cases of Coronavirus have been diagnosed in the north of Italy. That’s right around the corner, practically, from Barcelona.
The Italian government’s put whole villages on quarantine. El País publishes photos of empty supermarket shelves in Milan.
Time to start hoarding.
Monday: doomsday prepping begins
Nobody else in Lidl seems to be stocking up on canned tuna and beer this morning.
The rest of the customers are acting completely normally. There are the typical abuelas with their baskets, some construction workers getting something for lunch, neighborhood moms and dads.
Gente del barrio, just doing their thing.
Oh well. If the shit hits the fan, in the worst case, I won’t have to buy canned tuna again this year.
Tuesday: Coronavirus in Spain
First confirmed case in Catalonia.
That was quick. Still not too many cases overall, though… at least outside of Italy.
Are they even testing people, though?
Since the symptoms coronavirus are mostly just flu-like, I bet some people are slipping through – or just sleeping it off at home.
I guess I might as well start stockpiling bacon as well.
Wouldn’t want to be caught in a quarantine without bacon in the fridge.
Wonder how much wine I can fit in my cupboard, while we’re at it. I knew I should have gone for a bigger place, with a wine cellar and a panic room.
Can’t afford a whole bunker in New Zealand… yet.
Wednesday: getting financial affairs in order
I meet a guy who’s daytrading stocks on his phone while having tapas.
“Hang on,” he says. “I’ve got one percent battery, and I need to sell this stock right now.”
The guy in question was supposed to be at the Mobile World Congress here in Barcelona. But that was cancelled, after even the escort services decided it was too risky.
He came anyway, to check out neighborhoods for a potential move.
There are more confirmed cases today, both in Catalonia and Madrid. And the streets are quiet.
But that could just be because it’s Wednesday night.
Thursday: protect ya nose and mouth
I’m doing some home improvement, and I’m at the hardware store.
The owner is bragging: she says she’s the only one in the neighborhood who still has any face masks.
“How did you get face masks?” asks the old man who’s buying screws.
“Yo soy La Mari, ¡y claro! Tengo estos dones.”
The old man coughs.
“Cover your mouth when you cough… You could have the coronavirus!” she says.
I think she’s probably joking, but it’s hard to tell. She’s very emphatic.
He coughs again, covering his mouth this time. She hands him his change, touching the hand he’s just coughed into.
I go to get my two-meter length of dowel (don’t ask) and when I come back, some guiri guy is asking about masks.
Turns out La Mari has the masks for woodworking, not the sanitary masks.
The guy shakes his head, disappointed.
Friday: the saga continues
The Ministry of Health has raised the number of cases in Spain to 30, as of the time I’m writing this.
Oh, wait. Now it’s 31.
By the time I’ve had lunch, I guess that number could be bigger.
I still don’t see anyone actually wearing surgical masks. Maybe they’re just keeping them around, for later.
The government, apparently, is studying some more drastic measures. But who knows? And what are drastic measures, anyway?
I guess only time will tell.
Outside the bakery down the street, there’s a long line of people.
You can’t really hoard bread. Or can you?
I don’t think so. Maybe it’s just for Friday lunch.
Coronavirus in Spain: Don’t worry, be happy!
In conclusion, I’m not too worried.
Mainly, because I try not to worry about things that I have no control over.
I’ll keep y’all updated, though. For now, you can always check the up-to-the-minute news on El País, or here’s an article in English from The Local.
Further developments are certainly on the way. Until then, here’s a picture of an elephant…
Be safe, kids. And don’t listen to any wild rumors.
Things are (probably) going to be okay.
P.S. Because of all the excitement, this week has also been one of the worst ever for the stock market. Which, incidentally, is one of the topics of my previous article on the FIRE movement. I bet all the kids who bought Tesla stock two weeks ago aren’t excited to be down 25%, but hey. Them’s the breaks.
P.P.S. If you want some more info about viruses and Spain, check out my article about the ebola zombie apocalypse from a few years ago. Those were the days, huh? Or check out my March update about the Barcelona lockdown. Or my June update about the end of lockdown. In any case, be safe out there, kids.