Coronavirus Covid-19 stops play
Aren’t we living in interesting times? If you’d asked anyone a month ago if they thought we would see a virtual global lock down, how many would have said yes? And now it’s happening. As you know, we’re in a small boat yard at Sipiada on Evia island, Greece. As Europe is currently the epicentre of the virus, the Greek government has been proactive in trying to contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus. As well as banning gatherings of more than ten people and closing all museums, including the Acropolis until the end of March, schools and universities, restaurants, bars, clubs, theatres, playgrounds, and gyms are also closed.
Livaditis boatyard is quite isolated anyway, so we haven’t had much of a change in our lifestyle. The small supermarket where we shop in Limni is still open with most items available. The only items we couldn’t get were bread and I also noticed cleaning products were in short supply. But there are still lots of toilet rolls! Obviously the Greeks are better informed than the Brits and the Aussies because they know the coronavirus only causes diarrhoea in 3% of cases. People are very orderly too and apart from the shop keepers and a couple of customers wearing masks, you really wouldn’t know there was an issue. Thankfully too, the post office is still open, so I was able to mail a pendant to a US customer the other day.
There is one issue that definitely affects us though, and that is the latest governmental order made on the 19th March 2020, that disembarkation from any private vessels, regardless of the country of origin, is prohibited for one month in all Greek ports and moorings. This also applies to cruise ships and tourism boats.
We aren’t ready to return A B Sea to the water yet, but we were hoping to head to Turkey in the first two weeks of April. That will now have to be put back. We will spend our time living on the boat on the hard. We’ve decided to do this rather than re-enter the water because (a) we’d be subject to Greek cruising tax by merely being in the sea and (b) we couldn’t dock anywhere anyway.
My hope springs eternal though
When we turned up to do some work on A B Sea two days ago, there, growing in the rocky ground by the keel, was a solitary, deep red poppy. It is the only one I’ve seen in the boat yard. In fact, it’s the only one I’ve seen since I’ve been here. As I’ve come to associate poppies with Turkey as there was an abundance of these vibrant red beauties there, I am taking this single flower growing at the ‘foot’ of A B Sea, to be a positive sign that we will get to Turkey someday soon. In terms of actually when that will be, once we know, you’ll know.
For Baz and me, life goes on pretty much the same as before. As I said, the boat yard is fairly isolated with only a handful of people working here and just two couples who are working on their boats. One positive is that the weather is warming up and the sea is literally just over the road from the boat yard, so if we get stuck here for any length of time, we have a great beach with a lovely view and crystal blue waters within a few paces of where we live.
In my down time this week, I made a couple of rock pools using local shells and colourful beach pebbles. I think I’ll make a few more, so those of you wanting to be out sailing can have one of these on your desk, table or kitchen top
to give you a sense of being by the sea.