Covid-19 and me part VII

The Vietnam government has just extended the social distancing order for Khanh Hoa province for another week, and maybe more.

Which means that school’s still out , as it has been since February 2.

Now, the earliest that schools will return here in Nha Trang is April 22, and likely later.

My Vietnamese friend ‘Henry’ and I are a little puzzled as to why Khanh Hoa has been put in the ‘high risk’ basket. There’ve been no new cases here since the province was declared virus-free after our one case was cured on February 26.

There are noises from the peanut gallery about school re-opening here in May, but these are coming from chrystal-ball gazing. For now, no-one knows.

Flights leaving Vietnam are few and far between, and a recently-announced NZ Govt.-organised flight from HaNoi to NZ would be nigh impossible to get to. Travel restrictions.

My Visa here is paid until June 1, so for now at least, I’m staying put, and working online.

Business as usual

At the risk of sounding complacent, it is pretty much business as usual here in Nha Trang.

Most mornings, I go to the seaside for a morning walk, along with an estimated 500 – 1000 like-minded people. All at once, at any one time between around 5.30 and 7.00 a.m.

The northern Nha Trang seaside is a stretch of about 5km of beachfront, with a 3 or 4 -metre wide paved walking path alongside. And, ideal swimming along most of its length.

So it’s not just me running amok amid chaos, it’s a good slice of Nha Trang. So, about that, and as of the time of writing;

  • Khanh Hoa’s one and only case of the virus recovered, and the province was declared virus-free on February 26.
  • Total number of cases per million population throughout Vietnam – 2.
  • Total cases / million of population in New Zealand – 107.

Vietnam’s testing and isolation seems to have started much earlier, which might account for some of the difference. Either way, it is one of the safer places in the world to be right now.

In other news, and answering a family member’s questions;

  • Getting warmer?

    Yes, it’s … toasty. Usually above 25 deg C for morning walks. Toughest is early afternoons, before the wind gets up, a time many Vietnamese will take refuge in a nap

  • Online students

    Yes, still teaching Japanese adults mainly, although the number of bookings has slowed. I’m not sure whether that’s down to their purse-strings tightening, or my popularity fading a little after an initial honeymoon period.

  • Supermarkets

    .. are open as usual. The larger ones will do customers the service of pointing a device at their foreheads on entering. Taking temperature as a shortcut to virus status.

  • Plane ticket refunds

    I have a one-year credit for the Air New Zealand ticket from Sydney to Auckland. The ticket from Da Nang to Sydney I made the mistake of booking via an agency rather than directly with the airline. That’s proving difficult to recoup. I can re-book for a later date, but that’s not ideal because I don’t yet know when the ( current non-existent ) school term will end.

  • Apartments

    I’m considering a ‘kind’ ( their visitor numbers have obviously plummeted ) offer to return to Moonstone apartments for a rate reduced to just below what I’m now paying at Vinh Quang in the North. Vinh Quang is ideally placed for closeness to the beach, but the dog- and traffic ( horns ) noise is really starting to bug me. I almost started to lose my rag yesterday at a local who was spectacularly … unhelpful. So, maybe time to deal with the stress before it gets too much worse. Moonstone has a better kitchen, it has a couch, and it has less noise from bike horns. It also has a worse dog problem, and is 15 minutes or so further from the beach. Still, it’s something I’m thinking on, I’d love to be free of the bike-horn noise which is like water torture – it’s constant – drip, drip, drip….