The Covid 19 edition. 2020 the year that wasn’t
Living through Lockdown and whatever else came next.
March 25th – October 8th 2020
|Foggy Covid morning|
It’s just over a year now since Covid 19 engulfed planet earth and consequently reshaped our lives and the way that everyone has lived since Adam was a boy.
As you all know we are still in New Zealand and to be honest we can’t think of a better country to be in to sit out this pandemic.
Backtracking just a little I'll fill in the gaps of how NZ has got to where we are today.
NZ’s first case reared it’s ugly head on February 28th. As of January 29th 2021 this island nation has recorded 2,305 cases with 1950 confirmed cases and 355 probable ones.
|RV's lined up at ASB stadium to be used as self isolation units for NZ returnees|
To date 26 people have died from the virus. The pandemic here peaked in early April with 89 new cases per day and a total of 929 active cases.
On March 19th the entire New Zealand border was closed with the exception of returning citizens and residents.
|Birthday boy Liam|
A four level alert system was introduced on March 21st to manage the outbreak in New Zealand. Two days later the nation was put on notice that we were now entering Alert Level 3 and that within 48hrs would move to Alert Level 4.
This announcement sparked mass panic buying in the supermarkets as every man and his dog raced against time to stock up for the foreseeable future. Roads were clogged and carparks overflowed.
Within a day the shelves were pretty much stripped bare. There were no paper products left at all nor disinfectants, hand wash, sanitizers or face masks. Stables such as rice, pasta and canned goods as well as meats, vegetables and long life products were no where to be seen except in overflowing shopping trolleys stuck in snaking checkout queues. It was madness.
And as the clock struck 11:59 pm on March 24th 2020 New Zealand plunged down the rabbit hole head first into a nationwide lockdown.
There were no cars on the normally busy roads, except of course for essential workers, no planes or helicopters zoomed across our Whangarei skies and no chatter from early morning walkers as they strolled past the marina.
Well there actually were no walkers to hear.
The sound of happy kids squealing in the playground just meters from our marina berth was also silent.
The playground along with many other public spaces had been roped off with “Danger” red tape.
Overnight the New Zealand we knew had changed. We were now in our own little world, our bubble along with the occupants of thirteen boats who also shared our dock. Our dock is gated and only assessable to those who have a key. Believe me it was kept it kept firmly shut to the outside world during Level 4.
The day before lockdown commenced our marina appointed Liam, Dave from Rewa and Eric from Scoots as the interim managers. Liam would be in charge of everyday maintenance, Dave looked after money laundering from the communal bathrooms and laundry facilities while Eric was the receiver of mail and parcel deliveries as well as all things electric in nature.
As you would already know online purchases soared during lockdown and here in the marina was no different. So Eric was a very busy guy. It was quite a responsibility on the three boy’s collective shoulders given the size of the Town Basin Marina. It was also quite the honour for the three of them to be chosen as part of the “Trusted Trio”.
|Tuesday "Happy Hour "|
We socially distanced but still managed to have fun. The usual “Happy Hour” on Tuesday evenings had a different take.
We all either sat on the bows or stern of our boats chatting to our bubble buddies next-door rather than the usual get togethers on communal area at the end of the dock fondly know as the Barge Inn.
Boat projects flourished as chores that had been on the list for eternity finally made the “might as well do it now” list. Potted gardening became a big thing. Our normally bare dock sprung to life with veggie gardens and potted colour. At least once a week our sails were unfurled to dry out from passing rain showers. The last thing we wanted were moldy sails.
The interest in musical instruments increased two fold with many finding talents they never knew they had.
As birthdays and anniversary's rocked around our now extended family all celebrated, socially distanced of course.
Baking became the new norm with enticing smells wafting through the air. And as the internet providers advertised endless data plans at very competitive rates streaming became a big part of everyone’s life here in New Zealand.
During level 4 exercise was allowed but only in your local neighbourhood. So the majority of our dock took up walking “The Loop”, a pathway which follows the banks of the Heatea river and covers roughly 6 klm, at least once and sometimes twice a day.
Lockdown birthdays on our dock. Above Eric From "Scoots" and below Lisa from 'Argo"
The message from our government was to stay safe and be kind.
|There's a bear in there.....|
The nation was encouraged to put toy bears in front windows to make both children and the grown ups smile as they walked for their daily exercise.
Bears were to be seen not only in household front windows but on hedges, attached to letterboxes, in shop fronts and pretty much everywhere.
The "Be Kind" message really took off and was advertised across all media platforms ..and it worked a treat.
Both Easter and Anzac Day came and went but even so the Easter Bunny left baskets of goodies for each boat on our dock.
The note inside our basket read ...
Good Morning and Happy Easter!
The Easter Bunny and team would like to assure you that they are Covid aware and appropriate measures were employed during the preparation of your basket. Assembly took place with the utmost care, in a sanitary burrow, far below ground. All bunnies involved used appropriate PPE ( Personal Protective Equipment)
So please enjoy these goodies knowing they were prepared with your health and safety foremost in mind.
Your ever caring, Easter Bunny.
|Anzac Day toast with Bernice & Grant on Sea Flair|
As there were no traditional services for Anzac Day the nation was asked to stand, candles in hand, at the end of their driveways as the dawn broke. For us that meant standing on our deck.
Later in the morning Liam related to our non Kiwi / Aussie dock family the meaning and the importance of the day and played the last post over the loud speaker.
And of course this was followed by a thimble of rum for any fellow dockers who wished to imbibe.
On April 27th the nation moved to Alert Level three where we stayed for two weeks. Many rejoiced as fast food outlets like McDonalds and KFC reopened. The queue of cars at the drive throughs had to be seen to be believed.
|At Last ..on the golf course again|
On June 8th the Ministry of Health announced that there are no active cases of Covid 19 in the country and at 11.59 pm the country moved to Alert Level 1.
Restrictions on work, school, sports, domestic travel and gatherings size were lifted, however the borders remain closed.
|This photo is of all our "Bubble Buddies" on our dock during lockdown. We had shirts made up to mark the one period of time in 2020 that we will never forget.|
Then finally on October 8th Auckland joined the rest of the country at Alert level 1 . And that pretty much sums up the how, the when and the why New Zealand crushed the virus so well. The whole nation has their collective fingers crossed that it stays that way for a very long time.
Follow us on our tracker at :