We would very much like to hear how you are faring during the worldwide pandemic.
Here in Bermuda we are slowly but surely getting back to what is being called the “New Normal” as we enter Phase 4 of our recovery on 1st July 2020. The attached chart shows some of the easing of restrictions such as reopening the airport for commercial flights, permitting gatherings up to a maximum of 50 persons, with nightclubs and bars reopening subject to public health guidelines. We will still have a curfew in effect from midnight to 5am daily but I think it’s fair to say we have weathered the initial storm very well in comparison with most other countries, and I believe all due credit has to be given to Premier Burt for his leadership during the crisis.
Bearing in mind that we have a population of some 62,000 we have so far had a total of 146 confirmed Covid-19 cases, with 9 deaths, 134 persons having recovered, and at latest report we have just 3 active cases and 1 person hospitalized. In recent weeks we have had only a few extra cases reported, hence we are now in a position to move forward with gradual re-opening.
However, it has to be said that our economy has been seriously damaged with hundreds of lay-offs; our two major hotels, the Hamilton Princess and Southampton Princess have announced they will be closed for a year, and this was followed by news this morning that Rosedon is closing until 2021. Just about all cruise ship visits are cancelled for this coming season. Bars and restaurants are struggling to survive as are many retail stores and businesses. It remains to be seen what our Government can do to stimulate the economy.
Judging from what we have heard from our former colleagues on Island, our ExPo members appear to have managed to stay safe and healthy, with just one of our members, Marj Amos, testing positive for Covid-19 after returning to the Island on a special flight from Florida where she had been vacationing,but fortunately she was asymptomatic and after 2 weeks of self isolation she tested negative and is now fully back to normal.
We would really like to hear from our members around the world about your experiences during these most difficult of times. How have you and your family fared during the crisis and what have you been doing, or not doing during the past 4 months? Please drop us a line via email or in the comments section below, as we would love to hear from you.
29th June 2020
We have received our first reply from Dave and Penny Long in Florida. Dave served here from 1964 - 1967 before he and his Bermudian wife, Penny, moved to Florida where Dave qualified as a pilot flying corporate jets before joining Continental Airlines as a senior pilot. You can read more about Dave and Penny in our Then and Now column at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/tan/17-dlong
"Roger has asked me and others to write something about how we are managing through this devastating pandemic: Well, as I now fit in the octogenerian age and Penny not far behind with a compromised immune system we decided to isolate ourselves as suggested by the President and his team led by the unflappable Dr Fauci, that being mid-March and we are pretty much staying in that same mode today! Most know the curve had flattened in the US and individual states were opening up, all was looking promising until Florida and others opened their bars and beaches urging masks and self distancing at which time all hell broke loose and our cases spiked as the suggestions were not upheld by the younger crowd and unfortunately the cases are still climbing.
We live in a gated community so it has not been as isolated as most areas restricted to home. A handful of years ago we scaled down our home and moved about 3/10 of a mile away and basically changed our view from our pool to the golfcourse.
Living close to the golf course!
Many stop by our lanai to visit, self distancing by remaining in their golfcart and we too go for an “airing out” driving around our community on our cart stopping to say hello as we pass familiar faces. We have been so fortunate to sit idly and watch a family of Sandhill Cranes from babies to trying to take flight; Blue birds and Cardinals nest; hummimgbirds flitting by; hawks catching their prey; many song birds outdoing each other and watching grass grow! My sock drawer is in order, numerous books read and more TV than we would like to admit to and too many naps, not to mention looking like rock stars with masses of unruly hair.
I have been doing our immediate shopping with marked out social distancing lines, one-way arrows, mask wearing employees and thankfully most shoppers.The employees are constantly cleaning giving a sense of security. In the beginning the shelves were almost bare except for Ex-Lax and Rice Cakes but fortunately soon began returning to normal, well almost! Penny never too sure what product I will walk in the door with!
I do not know how we would manage with out social media especially FaceTime. It has kept us in constant touch with our daughter, grandchildren, and Penny’s sister in England. We also have made many phonecalls to keep in touch with friends and of course emails, texts and messaging. Unfortunately our daughter being one of the frontline workers as Director of Nursing contacted Covid and was extremely ill with her symptoms lingering for a long time, it was so worrisome being so far away.
Like you, we will both be happy when we can feel free and move about like we were once used to. Until this time we wish you all a healthy and safe re-entry to the life we love and cherish.
29th June 2020
We have also heard from former P.C. Bill Cree who served here for 2 years in 1970-1971
Robert "Bob" Payne
We just received the following from Robert "Bob" Payne - 45 years ago I arrived as a new boy in Bermuda, and we all know how our lives were changed by the Bermuda experience. I have never forgotten those days. Pat and I were married at Stella Maris in St.George in 1972, so nearly 50 up. I served until 1975 and returned to UK where I served in Dorset Police and subsequently with Devon and Cornwall until retirement in 2002.....37 years in total.
As we enter the ‘ beginning of the end’ after 14 weeks in ‘ Lockdown’ ( we hope) that everyone in our great circle is fit and well, and for those who have been less fortunate, a swift return to rude health. The 14 weeks will be stained on our minds forever but, the consolation was the fantastic weather we experienced here in UK, a glorious Spring.
I will be talking to the two colleagues I keep in touch with , namely Ray Lloyd and LP Brown, that they might update you.