I agree with much of the isolation, social distancing and lockdowns but I think some places and people have gone just a tad too far – slightly OTT. Understand, I am not whining and want them all to stay in place but some things I am concerned about. Let me explain: just before all the restrictive movement and other measures came into effect, Annabell was instructed by her doctor to take her blood pressure reading twice a day ( morning and evening) over ten days and record the results. At the end of the ten days, he wanted to see the results. Annabell had told him that I had a machine that recorded Blood Pressure and heart rate. So I did this for her over the ten days. We printed it off and Annabell wrote a short report. I was to take it to the surgery and hand it in . The envelops was clearly marked for the Dr.. I arrived at the clinic only to find a locked door and a notice that I was to go to a window outside in the carpark where I would be attended to. I did this and was confronted with a window about seven feet from the ground, fly screen covered and looking down on me. I have to admit that her “what can I do for you”had a tone of “what do you want? I explained that I had a letter from Annabell that needed to go to Dr….. Her comment was “I don’t think I can accept that” I looked at her and said “Fine”and turned to walk away — “oh I have hand sanitizer and gloves on now so I suppose I can accept it” I said nothing, handed it up and walked away. I’m not impressed., really I’m not. I fully understand the need for social distancing and the need to keep our front line workers safe, but I honestly felt that this was just Over the Top, to have people standing in the carpark taking up to a flymesh covered window. I drove along there the other day and there were still people standing at the window. Today (Thursday 23rd) we are in the throes of the full treatment – Thunder, Lightening and heavy rain – I wonder if there are people standing outside at the window this morning? Okay – Okay, my whinging is over!!
The investigation into the Ruby Princess continues. The figures from the Federal Government indicate that 10.47% of all Coronavirus cases in Australia are directly related to the Ruby Princess. In South Australia the figure is higher at 21% of all cases in the state. The ship has been ordered to leave Port Kembla this afternoon and to leave Australian Waters. The really sick have been removed to hospital. —- The Ruby Princess left Port Kembla and headed out of Australian waters on Thursday afternoon. I believe she is heading to Indonesia – not sure why.
Annabell is still well. I have been the one to go out and do any shopping or anything that needs to be done. I still take Benji out in the early morning and the only people I see at that time in the morning are a few people in
cars heading off to work. These days we don’t go out every morning. Oh I get up and ready to go out, but he is reluctant to go and I don’t intend to force him. Sometimes I just sit down beside him – he puts his head on my leg and I sit and scratch his ears for a while. If we don’t go out in the morning I generally take him for a drive in the afternoon and we have a walk around the Wetlands which is also quiet.
Tomorrow is ANZAC Day and I have set up the letterbox with poppies and candles. In the morning I will go out at 5:55 and light the candles so that we “light up the Dawn” at 6am, then quietly repeat the Ode and a minute’s silence. After that I’ll take Benji for a walk ( about 6:15) . On the subject of Benji – the Photograph theme for last week was the Letter R so I submitted a photograph of Rascally Rabbits. Don’t know what I am going to do this week as the theme is the letter B. Verra difficult. The rules are that it cannot be a photograph you already have.It has to be a new photograph taken after the Friday Theme release date. I have a week to come up with something.
Woo Hoo… It’s today!! Welcome to Today!
Here in South Australia the curve is starting to flatten and although this is happening it is still to early to let up on restrictions. The Ruby Princess still features in the infections and the 19 deaths thus far, with a further four in ICU. On the news the other night – Man walked into Drakes Supermarket and asked if he could return 138 packets of TP and 150 bottles of Hand sanitizer because the ebay site he was selling them on had been closed down. The group manager refused to offer him a refund told him in no uncertain terms what he could do with his products and told him that it was because of people like him there was a shortage in the first place. However, there is plenty of TP in the supermarket but I still see people doing the same thing – perhaps not to the same extent but quite similar. It’s there – buy one – don’t need it but buy it anyway. The G.M. of Drakes has issued a directive that no store is to refund or entertain in any way anyone who says that they have a bulk purchase of TP or Hand Sanitizer, or any other product that they would like to return for a refund. My suggestion that there will be a run on empty 40 gallon drums so certain people can burn all their hundreds of rolls of TP so people don’t find out they were hoarders, has definitely some merit . This particular guy had 20 people working with him buying as much as they could from the supermarket, then selling it online. Altogether he forked out $10,000 for his stuff and now he’s left with it. The police and government have been notified of people with many shopping bags going in and out of a property.. The Federal Police investigated and found a garage and a large shed full of Australian Products that were going to be shipped overseas. All of the product was seized and the gang will be charged. The Deputy Prime Minister has asked Australians to continue to report any such suspicious behavior in this regard. No, we are not turning into a Police State but generally people are fed up with these hoarders that have caused so much unnecessary shortages of essential products – even to the extent of stealing it from hospitals.
The funeral today went smoothly, which is about as much as you can really say about a funeral. A very shortened service with only 8 people in attendance, plus the funeral director and assistant make up the legally allowed ten persons. When all this is over and we can get back to what will be a changed normal, we will organise a Memorial Service for Fay. We have not heard from Sam since we returned Dougla last Friday. Went over to the shop this afternoon to get some things for Annabell. Some of it was for her BSL tests from the chemist. However, she did ask me to go to the supermarket and get something and I couldn’t remember if she said Sulfuric Acid or Citric Acid. In the end I got Citric Acid, which was probably just as well. When I was out I went to see the Vet. regarding Benji’s Parvovirus Booster. He is due first week in May, so we still have time. I was only joking about the acid just in case you took it seriously. It’s my warped sense of humour.
The Ruby Princess is still at Kembla and there is international concern regarding the ship. Thus far 35 people from the Ruby Princess have died – 19 of them here in Australia. A Criminal Investigation by the Australian Federal Police is currently underway. The ship is due to depart Kembla on Sunday but the general feeling is that she wont be going anywhere. There is 1000 people on board and at least 200 of them tested positive to the virus. The general consensus is that these days are the twilight of the cruise industry. I think it may survive but in a very much reduced format. There are court cases pending against a few of the cruise companies in Australia, the United States and in the U.K. – and these run into millions. It is now Sunday evening and the Ruby Princess is still at Port Kembla and is likely to remain there for another week, at least. However, there are police all over the dock area where she is so it is unlikely that she poses any future risk to Australia. When this is all over, I think the world relationship with China will be changed – and not for the better.
After a weekend that turned into seven weeks, Dougal will be going home on Friday – all being well! It’s been a long seven weeks not helped by the government instructions to stay at home. We have gone out for walks but in the early morning. It hasn’t been a burden, really, except for going out walking and the fact that he goes ballistic if he hears another dog bark – just about pulling my arm off. Also, in the morning Benji just stands still if I feed the Magpies whereas Dougal tries to have a go at them — no point in telling him that he would come off second best.
The cruise ship, Ruby Princess has been allowed to dock at Port Kembla. Kembla is an industrial port away well out of the way. The ship will be allowed to stay there for 10 days to refuel and restock
supplies, food and so forth for the 1050 crew remaining on board. Those who are sick will be treated, and it is believed that about one fifth of the crew are showing symptoms of coronavirus. At the end of the ten days the ship will be ordered to leave and as far as we know she has been allowed to dock on that understanding. The Home Port is Bermuda but it is unlikely that there will be a welcome mat waiting for it there. In Australia there is a Criminal Investigation into the decision to allow it to dock and disembark 2700 people into the general population in Sydney. At least 600 of the present cases in Australia, along with 12 deaths have been linked to the Ruby Princess. There a lot of people in and around Port Kembla who are very unhappy with the present decision to allow the ship to not only dock there, but remain there for 10 days.
Western Australia has closed its borders. I found it interesting that the W.A. State Government were comparing the closure of their borders in less time than it took the UK to activate Brexit. On the subject of the UK, I watched the Queen’s Address and I noted that the Prime Minister ( Boris Johnson) has been moved to hospital. Actually to update that, the latest news this morning ( Thursday ) is that he has been moved out of the ICU, which sounds good and quite encouraging. Here in South Australia the spread of the virus is slowing down, which is s good sign. It does not mean that we have beaten the thing – far from it. The general prognosis from our medical people is that the virus is going to be in the population for a long time and the only way we can actually defeat it is to develop a vaccine. I genuinely believe that when this is over we really should give serious thought to our trade and financial relations and arrangements with China and the Chinese Communist Party, who control every aspect of life in China and however you look at it, no matter who you think you are dealing with, the CCP is controlling the play.
One of our ladies died on Saturday (4th) and we are trying to organise a funeral on Wednesday 15th. But we don’t know what is happening. It was a sudden, unexpected death so there may be an inquest. Her son has managed to get out of Western Australia and the idea is to stream the service to WA. Having said that we have no idea how or when Kenneth (son) is going to get back home with the WA Borders now closed. He will have to go into two weeks quarantine before he will be allowed to go back home. The funeral will be Wednesday 15th – private funeral with only 8 invited people
The number of new cases in Australia is declining- which is good. Our growth factor regarding the spread and new cases is 0.85 and provided it stay below 1.0 we are getting on top of the crisis. The growth factor for the UK, for example is 1.05 with the USA being 0.99 These figures are as 8th April. On the subject of April, I celebrated my Birthday sitting right here – no outing – no visitors. Andrew was still in Roxby Downs and I did get a phone call from John. Andrew did phone last night when he got home. I got a card from Annabell, which was lovely.It was my only card. Today is Friday and I took Dougal back home just after lunch. He was pleased to see his people as much as his people were pleased to see him. – Sam was looking and sounding well. I don’t think this can happen again. If things are back to what passes for normal and I head off to a Church Conference, Annabell is not able to look after two dogs on her own.
This is a photograph I took when I was out with the dogs last night. I took it as my phone was on its last gasp because I forgot to charge it after my facetime call with my son and grandson. I thought it was a very odd looking sky. Generally I would have waited until I had cleared the houses but I didn’t think my phone would go the distance. (it didn’t)
Yesterday I attended church – well sort of – I attended the Moderator’s Service on line. He also found it odd because although he had conducted a service in a church with several hundred members and a church with only 20 members, it was the first time he had ever conducted a service in an empty church.
I sometimes think about life some years hence when we might be sitting around a table having a meal and a drink and the conversation turns to “The Great Toilet Paper Crisis of 2020″and I will be forced to drink more to cover my embarrassment at not being able to join in the conversation because I never bought 100+ toilet rolls a week. However, I console myself by thinking that some of these people will buy empty 40 gallon drums and light fires so they can quietly burn all these hundreds of toilet rolls so no one will ever know how stupid they were. LOL I sleep well at night. Dougal is still here and we had a call from Adelaide this afternoon to say that they will be home next Thursday and will come and collect Dougal on Friday. I went over to the supermarket for dog food and since that was all I had, I was asked at the checkout if I had missed the toilet rolls. I said no, I didn’t want any. I got some very strange looks.
Apart from the smaller shops, most of which are closed anyway, actual cash money it no longer acceptable and paying by card is the accepted way these days. The Pay Wave on my card is not working since so I have been using my credit card. I am due for a new card next month so I can wait for that rather than order a new card now and have to pay for it. I can still use the card in the normal way since only the pay wave function is not working. However, Annabell raised a point with me in discussion – can these stores legally refuse to accept cash as payment for goods? i.e. can they refuse to accept legal tender? Interesting, my answer was no, I don’t think they can, but I really don’t know. —- I do now– and according to a Reserve Bank Statement on this very issue – a refusal to accept Australian Banknotes and coin in payment for goods is not unlawful. A business can request that payment can only be made by using a card.
I put the clock thing in to amuse: the clocks actually go back this weekend and I think going back about four years would be good.
The Cruise Ships off the coast of New South Wales, have been refused permission to dock. They are believed to be a hotbed of the virus. There is one off the coast of Western Australia again with foreign crew and
foreign nationals. It has been instructed to leave Australian waters but refuses to do so. The ships are registered in the West Indies so they have been instructed to go home. – they refuse to leave. Navy ships are on standby, although just what they can do is anyone’s guess. But on the news this morning there is a new virus case in South Australia – again from the Ruby Princess. Nearly half of the deaths in South Australia are linked to the Ruby Princess and the idiotic decision to allow 2700 people to disembark from the ship in Sydney and disperse to their homes without any checks, is at the root cause of this. There are a number of cruise ships (8) off the Australian Coast several inside Australian waters that have been ordered to leave. They have refused to do so and right at the moment there is really not a lot we can do about it. The spectacle of Naval Warships forcing a cruise ship out of Australian waters, does not bear thinking about. Judging by what I am reading in the news I have concerns that the European Union will survive this crisis with a number of the Eastern European countries,using the crisis to gain control of power and on the path to becoming right wing dictatorships. That’s a worry.