Travelling During Pandemic

  1. Upon leaving Morocco on 3 July 2020, we have to drive to the Netherlands to get the annual vehicle inspection for Vangar, which is overdue since June.So we made our way from Spain to France, Switzerland, Germany, Netherlands.We chose this route we we can visit our lockdown friends in Switzerland. As we were driving in Spain, we noticed the difference from a year ago when we were here. People in shops, supermarket and shopping malls are wearing mask. Security guards watched us like hawks. They ensure we wear mask before we enter any building. We had to take temperature checks and we were given hand sanitizer gels before we enter anywhere. We are happy to oblige as it is for our own safety anyway. On one occasion we entered a mobile phone shop and the staff insisted that we wear mask before she would talk to us. On another occasion while we were in Granada, we bought an ice cream and the staff sprayed our money and then put our change of coins onto a tray, sprayed it, rolled it with a roller and pass the tray to us so we can collect the sanitised and dried coins. We were tickled by the whole episode and wished we had video it. Its a little scary and showed us the pandemic is not over yet. It also reminded us to be careful and avoid crowds. We drove to France and park in more secluded places so we can be the only moho around. We do not eat out and only go and out of supermarket to buy produce amd cook our 3 meals in VanGar. When we were at the supermarket, some has specific lanes to go on one direction. We avoided lanes that has people and kept our ears open and whenever we hear anyone coughing, we would walk far away from the person who coughs. Visiting our friends in Switzerland, we knew they were as cautious as us as they have a young child. We are also taking risks visiting them as we could have unknowingly pick up the virus from places we past, no matter how careful we are. Nevertheless, our desires to see each other somehow outweigh the requirements to be isolated. We humans are meant to live as a village and the need for human contact seems to be greater than living alone on an island. Luckily, all went well and both our friends and us had a memorable time in Switzerland. People in Switzerland are also more chill about the pandemic and most do not wear mask in public. They are also less peole in the streets. It is summer and we were told usually there would have been more people around. We pressed on with our journey via Germany. Vangar got worse in the Black Forest. On a normal hill side, it started to struggle to climb. Despite this we still got a speeding ticket for travelling at 47km in a 40km zone! Finally, on 20 July 2020, VanGar was sent to the garage for its annual inspection, APK. We packed our bags to go to a friend's place who has kindly agreed to house us while we wait for VanGar to be inspected. On route to our friend's place, we  visited Amsterdam. People in the Netherlands seem to be more relaxed and most chose not to wear mask unless they are entering shops. The streets are packed and people chill at cafes without mask. But the streets are marked with one direction for pedestrians. One side walk up the other side down. There are a lot of European around as people are travelling local instead if going abroad for their summer holidays. We were able to travel freely within the EU zone, including and up to Albania as EU has mostly opened. We do check on each country before we enter though. Hungary was closed on 1 Sep 2020 4 days after we left. We also noticed a lack of Chinese and Indian throughout our visits to all these countries. A lot of cafes were either closed or empty. We hope this pandemic is over soon and one can travel freely like before.  


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