Stupidity and compassion in the time of Corona

I have no idea what day it is .. is it Day 9 since the first presidential covid-19 announcement or is it -3 days to lockdown? It’s Tuesday, that much I know.

554 affected people, as per test results and official numbers, 4 recovered and 2 critical, still no deaths. Our stats actually look better than one might expect, despite the rise, and some say we might never reach the horrors experienced by Italy and now Spain. I suspect this nightmare has not yet reached the poor who have no way of self-isolating and/or difficulty keeping good hygiene. That is when the poo will hit the fan and that is why government has reacted so fast and efficiently.

A brief foray to the grocery store today – oh my god, designer masks, helmets,  welding masks. At one point I became emotional, thank goodness I wasn’t shopping alone and my friend calmed me down. I think what freaks me out is that we are living something that fiction has shown me time and again in ‘doomsday and disaster’ type of films and series that I must confess to enjoy. Is this happening for real???

I spent the rest of the day catching up on bookkeeping and preparing my accounts for the auditors – I will need their advice and assistance for whatever relief the state is preparing for small businesses. God help us when you consider that these funds are going to be administered by goons put in position years ago by one of the most corrupt presidents/regimes we have ever known. They’ve already managed to confuse the hell out of us with their websites and lack of details. It’s all very well that we have a fabulous president at the moment, but he is surrounded by fools and thieves!

I was horrified to receive an email from a country lodge enticing people to take advantage of special rates. They are going against government advice to NOT go into the countryside so as to not spread the virus, exposing their staff, and they are profiting from the virus. Bastards. They are in Malmesbury and their name is Fynbos Estate – let’s put their name where it belongs, in the trash.

Oh and if you are thinking of leaving the city for the countryside or for Easter – tough shit, these are not normal times, you are stuck in the cities with the rest of us. The point of a lockdown is to contain this virus, not spread it like dooses all over the country. In case it’s not obvious, the countryside is not crawling with big hospitals that would be able to deal with this as well as the cities. Watch this and see how the mayors of Italy are losing their shit with the people who are in effect killing others.

I am so touched at the reaching out from various people. I’ve had quite a few clients contacting me to check if I am all right, to ask how I am handling the obvious negative effect on tourism, to just touch base, to send greetings, to show humanity and empathy. I am also touched by the people who know that I have a lung disease and who have touched base on that particular aspect – they will all be remembered for their compassion and ability to think beyond how this is affecting them.

If not for this virus, today I should have been touring the West Coast with clients. We had planned a visit to an animal reserve and then birding in the West Coast National Park. It’s one of my favourite places and only a short distance from Cape Town.  A couple of pics below. I can’t seem to find photos that do not show the reserve in its renowned flower season. That will come in spring, in September – now there is something to look forward to!

bokkies and flowers


langebaan lagoon flowers

About Francoise Armour

I run a small touring company (Tours du Cap) at the bottom of Africa, to show visitors the beauty and vibrant culture of the country I have lived in since my parents brought me here from France as a child. I enjoy taking photos and wish I had learnt to do it properly. I enjoy writing but don't do enough of it. I enjoy walking in the mountains that surround me and I marvel over the views and the flowers and the amazing rock formations. I have a small, cute, clever, black dog of indeterminable breed, named Vida, who reminds me regularly that walking and getting out is not only for when tourists want it.

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A note to all accidental visitors:

I am not a photographer and do not claim to have any particular skills whatsoever in that department. I have enormous respect for those who can see the potential in a scene and can create a great photo. Good photography is an art, in my opinion.

I am just a happy snapper, I have no special lenses or accessories, my camera is very simple and it's usually best to leave the setting on auto.

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