A lifestyle expat travel blog about culture, history, Brexit, the Royal Family, travels around the world, Europe, and being British in Berlin!
Posted on March 23, 2020 by thebritishberliner
What this means is that we don’t yet have a total lockdown but social restrictions have been imposed.
Strict instructions now stipulate that people are banned of gatherings with more than two people at a time outside of workplaces, families, and people living in the same household, and that we MUST stay at home and can only venture out if absolutely necessary such as for work, health-related reasons or to go to the supermarket.
At a time like this, I am glad that we have a leader such as Angela Merkel.
A leader who is strong, efficient, straight to the point and tells it like it is.
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Get the latest information from the World Health Organization about coronavirus. WHO
Because we ARE officially in the midst of a global pandemic that the World Health Organization (WHO) has labelled as a “public health emergency of international concern” (PHEIC).
Everyone is most worried.
And we should be.
Movement of people across the planet has been grossly reduced or outright restricted.
And people are dying.
As a result, panic has struck in with people stockpiling food, looking for who is to blame by finger-pointing, reducing non-essential movement, locking down communities and closing borders.
But in some places, people have become so overwhelmed that they’ve decided to ignore all the warning signs, have Corona Parties, (auf Deutsch) – weil Sie feiern trotzdem draußen mit Partystimmung im Park und Verstöße in Kneipen – make merry, and carry on as if it’s Christmas!
I love you, but I’m looking at you Berlin!
And don’t think you can get away with it London, because you’re just as bad.
In fact, you’re worse!
Boris Johnson announced that cafes, bars, restaurants, gyms and leisure centres were to close and what did Londoners do?
Rush to the pub for a last hurrah!
I’m not here to tell you what rumour is right or wrong ‘cos I’m not the government and neither am I a doctor!
All I can advice you to do is NOT to go to your local doctor if you’re feeling ill, but to call or Email instead, listen to the instructions of your government as per where you should or shouldn’t go, take extra precautions with cleanliness and health, and use a bit of common sense!
If you live in America, please follow this link:
If you live in the UK, please follow this link:
If you live in Germany, please follow this link:
If you want to know what the World Health Organisation (WHO) is saying, please follow this link:
Like yourself, I’ve read so many articles about what to do and it can be scary with fake news, false rumours and even our own individual governments either wringing their hands in despair or giving out the wrong information all together!
And that’s saying something!
SO SHOULD YOU PANIC?
But my advice two weeks ago is still valid.
Contrary to what other travel bloggers are saying, my advice is not to travel.
Because as you might have already seen, there’s a legitimate and very huge risk that if you DO travel abroad or indeed anywhere at all at the moment, you might get stuck there, your destination might have a sudden increase in outbreak, you won’t be able to get home because flights or trains have cancelled, your friends or family might get infected, you are forced into quarantine for a certain unforeseeable amount of time, and the borders have closed!
In fact, even in your own country, cities and federal states, are closing their doors to anyone going in or out!
The simple fact is, whether you like it or not, individual nations are deciding on how best to limit the spread of the Coronavirus infection.
The COVID-19 isn’t a conspiracy theory, it isn’t the end of time, but given the closeness, speed, reliance and ease in which we connect via global trade or travel, is a real legitimate worry.
In fact, forget about a staycation as most regions around the world, are under some sort of lockdown and this isn’t the time to jump in your car / on your bike, and explore where you live.
It’s a time to go home and stay there.
It hurts me to say this but you must:
BUT WHAT CAN I DO?
You can do plenty.
See the list below:
I CAN’T BREATHE, I FEEL A SENSE OF PANIC!
I get it.
I totally understand.
You went to the supermarket the other day, and the shelves were empty.
There wasn’t any food.
Or toilet roll!
Of course, it’s dreadful to go to the mall to be confronted with signs of “we’re closed” or rows and rows of empty shelves.
It makes you fearful.
It makes you scared.
You look at yourself and begin to wonder if you did or didn’t do, something that contributed to the nightmare that we’re all in.
It makes you look at people and wonder if they, caused this pandemic.
And neither did they.
Don’t go there.
It’s only going to make you sick and even more fearful.
Think of happy things and breathe.
Supermarkets are aware of the issue and doing everything they can, to get on top of things.
And they will.
You might have to forgo your favourite brand of sushi, gourmet tomatoes or home-made bread.
But it’s alright.
You won’t die if you don’t have Marmite or Dijon mustard.
You’ll be alright to do without.
If you’re an expat, a traveller, a tourist stuck in a country not your own, or simply wish to talk to someone and you feel overwhelmed, panicky or frightened, write to me.
THINGS TO DO TO KEEP YOU CALM!
If you’re trying to get home, if you haven’t done so already, get travel insurance!
IS VICTORIA AT HOME?
I’ve cancelled or postponed my international travel for 2020!
And even though I like the sea.
These beautiful regions have been closed down, and tourists (local or international) are no longer allowed to visit.
Luckily, I work for an IT/Engineering company ‘cos the writing has been on the wall for a few weeks as my colleagues noticed my new rota of frenzied manic cleaning!
And even though I live in Berlin.
My company – H&D – An HCL Technologies Company – is actually in Lower Saxony, otherwise known as Niedersachsen!
My office was like a ghost town, but after having a meeting and a vote – it’s Germany after all – I collected my laptop, training material & most of the books & audio material I might need, and left!
Then I attempted to book a last minute train back to Berlin! Ha! That wasn’t easy as either there were no seats available or the prices suddenly shot through the roof!
In short, as of March 17th, I’m back in Berlin.
I’m a little anxious of course and our son understands but is disappointed, because not only was his school trip to Dublin (Ireland) cancelled but he’s going to be 18 this year (gulp), and there isn’t going to be merriment and a huge party!
Having said that my husband – The Music Producer is working online at home, my son – The Tall Young Gentleman is home-schooling, and I feel utterly safe.
And thankfully, I’m able to work remotely from home.
Once again if you can, please do stay at home, keep your distance from others, and flatten the curve!
Better to be safe than sorry.
If you want to keep up with reliable news as per what’s going on around the world, you can follow me here.
And book your luxury hotel for 2021 right here!
Don’t judge me!
This article is not sponsored, and all thoughts and opinions, are my very own!
A huge thanks goes to all the many doctors, nurses, volunteers and healthcare staff world-wide, who have and are still, putting their lives on the line in order to help others.
March is going to be something most of us have never ever seen in our lifetime before.
See you soon!
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Get the latest information from the World Health Organization about coronavirus. WHO
Watch this space!
Please note that The British Berliner is a participant in affiliate programmes designed to provide a means for sites to earn fees by advertising and linking to World Nomads Travel Insurance & Booking.com.
In short, there are two affiliate link companies connected to this post!
Every time one of these services is used, booked, and paid for via my link, I get a little percentage, but at no extra cost to yourself!
A win-win for all!
Note! I never travel without insurance as you never know what might happen.
I learnt my lesson in Spain. And obviously, in countries like Qatar, where technically the risk is higher, I can’t imagine going that far beyond WITHOUT INSURANCE. No siree! You can get yours here, at World Nomads!
So what are you waiting for?
Thanks a million!
See you in Berlin.
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Category: Coronavirus, COVID-19, COVID19, don't panic, EUROPE, EXPAT, fear, Flatten The Curve, GERMANY, Germany, global pandemic, how to feel safe, INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL, is it safe to travel to Europe?, is it safe to travel?, is it safe?, keep calm, lockdown, panic, safer at home, Security, shelter in place, Social Distancing, stay home, stay safe, stayhome, TRAVEL, travel abroad, world travelTags: CoronaVirus, COVID-19, COVID19, Don't panic, europe, Flatten the curve, Germany, global pandemic, health and safety, how to feel safe, keep calm, lockdown, panic, public health, Safety, Social Distancing, stay at home, stay home, travel, virus
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I'm a British girl from Manchester living in Berlin with my German husband and my half British – half German son. My blog is a lifestyle expat travel blog and puts a focus on my promotion of culture, history, travels around the world, Europe, Brexit, the Royal Family, British-German life and being British in Berlin - I am The British Berliner!
Very well said. Everyone needs to stay at home right now. I’ve been home for over a month here in Vietnam. I’ve not met with any friends. I go on nightly walks with my partner. And I got to the store, wearing a facemask because Vietnam requires us to wear masks in public. That’s it. We’re not on lockdown yet, but honestly I’m hoping it happens soon. All inbound flights are canceled starting tomorrow. The world needs to stay at home, please! I’m so glad your work is allowing you to stay home. All the love to companies that are taking this seriously. Glad you and your family are in a safe space. We’ll all get through this together. I’ve loved my online chats with all the bloggers and random internet people. Seriously, just messaging people helps me get through these very weird days. Anyway, thanks for writing this. Wishing you the best!! Stay in touch.
Thanks so much Justine!
Yep. The Coronavirus is real.
These are crazy times.
Obviously, we all heard about the Coronavirus in China, but it’s over THERE and not over HERE, so didn’t really register. I mean, we were still trying to help the guys in Hong Kong, to protest their freedom!
I think it really began to hit home when it arrived in Italy because most Europeans, and the world love & Tuscany (North Italy) is one of our favourite places to visit.
My family and I spent some of our summer holiday in Sardinia just last year, and I was going to go to Sicily and Venice this year! We usually don’t need much persuasion to visit Italy and Italy fell enormously quickly, which shocked and shook us all.
In fact, it shocked Europe so much that one by one, borders came up, which is mostly never done as we have free movement within the EU, and have done so since 1992! 🙁
Once again, thank you. Stay Safe & Stay in touch too. xx
Victoria, we are living in such incredible times. I am astounded at the speed of this epidemic, how it has taken over the whole world in just few weeks. When we started our travels in SE Asia 10 weeks ago, there was hardly anything on the news. Now we are all under strict government orders to STAY HOME!!! and rightly so, as we know how some badly affected countries have had to deal with an overwhelmed health service and many deaths. As you have pointed out…no need to panic. But just follow the government and the expert recommendations and stay calm. It is very important to filter out all the things that are being published by unqualified people and only follow health professionals guidelines and official websites. Stay safe 🙂
Thank you so much Gilda!
Me too. It’s incredible. Goodness knows the impact the coronavirus will have on us all, economically, financially and even on our way of life. Will we change or will it be business as usual?
Only time will tell.
The need to keep a level head and stay calm is exactly what I’m trying to convey.
p.s. You too. 🙂
Most importantly, to be careful of what one reads and to be strong enough to get the facts from a trusted source, then switch off!
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