Locking down further

It was one of those moments yesterday, that I suspect we won’t forget in a long time. At 6pm I sat down with the children and watched Chancellor Angela Merkel announce the measures that will take effect tomorrow.

Previously the town of Oberursel had announced a series of its own measures, including shutting playgrounds and other outdoor facilities until further notice. The rubbish tip will remain closed. The swimming pool will remain closed. Bus services will be reduced. Bus drivers will no longer serve tickets.

Then came the 6pm press conference, and the national rules. Something almost unheard of in the Federal system in Germany of the past 70 years.

With the exception of supermarkets, weekly markets, delivery services, collection services, drinks shops, chemists, petrol stations, medical suppliers, banks, building societies, post offices, hair dressers, dry cleaners, launderetts, newspaper sellers, DIY stores, gardening stores, animal food stores and wholesalers, all shops are to close.

Bars, clubs, discos, pubs and similar establishments are to close, as are theatres, cinemas, exibitions, trade fairs, zoos and leisure parks. All public and private sports grounds are to close, as well as swimming pools, playgrounds, and fitness studios.

Restaurants are only allowed to open between 6am and 6pm. Tables should be set apart and the number of guests limited.

Hotel rooms are not to be used by tourists.

In addition to the information from the press conference, a number of borders with Germany were already being closed to everyone except goods traffic, people with cross-border jobs and returning German nationals.

Many of the islands in the North Sea and Baltic Sea are being cut off from the mainland, with no visitors allowed and only their residents being allowed to return. Tourists are being asked to leave.

Working from home is not really a problem. Co-ordinating it with two children doing their schoolwork from home is something new.

About Graham

Graham Tappenden is a British ex-pat who first came to Germany as a placement student in 1993, returning in 1995 to live there permanently. He has been writing for AllThingsGerman.net since 2006. When not writing blog posts or freelancing for the Oberurseler Woche and other publications he works as a self-employed IT consultant solving computer problems and designing websites. In 2016 he gained German citizenship.

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