When Can We Return to Traveling??
Sand, CEO, Madrid, Spain
03 May 2020
One of the biggest questions on our minds (as travelers) is when will we be able to return…to traveling? Unfortunately there is no clear answer at this point in time. There is some positive news coming from a handful of countries ie, Italy, Germany, Croatia… but there is the overriding questions of; Can I leave my country? Do I need to self quarantine when I arrive? How safe will it be?
Here in Spain, one of the hardest hit by this pandemic, things have slowly improved. The government has received much criticism for their handling of the virus, and it’s hard to argue. Spain’s elder population has taken a massive loss from COVID-19 and a large majority of deaths have been from residents of nursing homes that are a mix of privately and publicly run operations.
COVID-19 hasn’t stopped neighbors in Chamberi from spreading some joy with decorations and music nightly
On a day that reached almost 80 degrees, at 8pm the temp was slowly dropping and the city invited us out to bask in it’s glory. Madrid is back…maybe not the same Madrid as we once knew it, but the signs were promising. A mix of people wearing masks, social distancing mostly honored and just a hint of activity around the COUNTLESS number of bars and restaurants. Madrid residents are ready and willing to come back, but the government isn’t quite ready for us.
“A street normally bustling with automobiles, was commandeered by bicyclists who were free to pick any lane and ride freely for miles ”
I preferred the morning walk to the evening (aka Paseo meaning “evening stroll” in Spain) but that’s mostly because I like to avoid crowds. Each walk was noticeably different in terms of partakers. Morning was owned by the athletes; the runners and bicyclists of the city. Trapped inside with nowhere to stretch their legs other than up and down some stairwells. These people took the the streets with open arms. Paseo Castellano, a street normally bustling with automobiles, was commandeered by bicyclists who were free to pick any lane and ride freely for miles.
Morning stroll in Chamberi
The evening paseo was for everyone else. Saturday night and the sun still in the sky, we took the the streets with wonder and yearning for what happens next. When can we finally get our fill of tapas? When will we be able to bump elbows with the bar crowd and order up dos canas or tinto de verano (skip the sangria next time you visit). And most importantly, when can we get to the beach?!
The answer, is all in good time. We’ve made it this far, and we’ve lost too many. Our healthcare workers and essential workers are the most amazing and BRAVE humans we could have asked for. Not only will they deserve to be recognized on a national and world level daily, they deserve a proper and long paid vacation when this is all over with. We must do right by them and I hope our governments add this recognition as top priority. THANK YOU TO ALL THOSE WHO ARE FIGHTING AND PROTECTING US FROM THIS VIRUS.
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