So, we are a household in self-isolation. Hannah had a cough and high temperature last week and we were advised to self isolate her for seven days. Following that, the government advice changed to if any of your family displayed symptoms then the whole household had to go into self-isolation for two weeks. Yesterday Fionnuala was sent home from work with a cough and sore chest. So, here we are, day two of self-isolation.
Personally I feel fine, no symptoms, as is the case for Adam and Rebecca. Our Education Minister announced yesterday that the schools are to close from Friday for the foreseeable future. The general feeling is that they won’t open again before the new school year in September. I’ve also spoken to my boss and explained the situation. Thankfully I am allowed paid special leave during this period away from work.
We have been in touch, via telephone, with our local pharmacy and shop who are kindly making deliveries to our door as required. Mother’s Day cards have been ordered online and we are well stocked with food, drinks, medication, toilet roll and all other necessary supplies. Especially Diet Coke. We have satellite TV, wifi, books, board games, PlayStation and everything else we need to keep ourselves occupied.
Northern Ireland this morning had its first confirmed case for coronavirus, an elderly person with an underlying health condition. There have been 68 confirmed cases so far, but currently they are only carrying out tests on those admitted for hospital treatment. In the wider United Kingdom there have now been 2,626 confirmed cases. The belief is that, in reality, there are tens of thousands more.
I’ve been speaking to a work colleague in Belfast, who says the city is quiet. We don’t know if there will be a lockdown but a lot of bars, restaurants and cinemas are closed, due to lack of footfall. The Prime Minister is giving live, televised press conferences every evening where we are updated as to the rapidly evolving situation. I’ll keep updating you all as to events here as they continue to unfold. Stay safe, everyone. Treat the pandemic seriously. This isn’t a drill.