by Peter Spencer
As you all know the world is changing around us very quickly. Macron spoke just a few days ago and, because of the need to control the spread of the virus, spoke again last night introducing further guidance and restrictions.
As a lot of you, like me, have lived here a long time and have not become “completely” fluent in the patois, Rosy thought she’d paraphrase what was said last night and get it out to you guys and gals.
This is in no particular order or priority just a “dump” of the key points
If you plan to venture out, you will need a piece of paper in your hand to explain to “les flics” what you’re up to. This attestation can be handwritten or you can use the online form. It needs to say what you’re up (shopping, walking the dog, going to a doctor, chemist or hospital etc.) Failure to have this could lead to a fine of between €38 to €135€
As you will have seen Spain closed its borders last night and, in essence, all borders across Europe are now under strict controls whilst still allowing free movement for business and logistics.
The attestation is attached. You’ll need to have a copy for every journey out.
It would appear the medical experts are saying DON’T take anti- inflammatory drugs such as Nurofen, Advil or Ibuprofen but rather Paracetamol or Doliprane. If in doubt check with your doctor. As ever regular hand washing
Don’t panic and don’t stock up. It would appear shops are being cleared as if a plague of locusts has landed yet suppliers and the government says this is totally unnecessary as the logistical chain will be kept going and products will arrive to restock the shelves. Having said that supermarkets will introduce some changes that you’ll need to be aware of.
For instance Picard, the frozen food shop, are asking you to bring your own bags (or hand carts) as they will not be letting people use the carts and trolleys in the shop. Keep a meter from other shoppers when in queues. We believe they will require the use of plastic rather than the folding stuff to reduce the possible “transmission” of the virus. Remember they will deliver.
Some shops may well introduce a one out one in policy to avoid overcrowding the shop. In addition, assistants won’t pack your bag (I’m not sure if they do now anyway). For other outlets it might be worth “googling” to if they have pushed out something similar to Picard.
Also consider shopping online.
Take gloves and gels when out shopping as it’s all but impossible to avoid touching metal, and other adhesive surfaces not least at petrol stations (which will remain open).
Food shops for us and pets are staying open. Nearly everything else is not. Not least “brico” shops which is a bit of a bugger if you wanted to catch up on some painting and decorating.
Stay at home / garden. At present these restrictions are with us for 2 weeks minimum but I would envisage that could stretch to a month or so. The government is trying to “flatten” the curve of virus infections to reduce the pressure on the medical community (what bloody heroes and heroines they are).
Running a business
This is less clear. As it happens, we had a bloke from Castorama start with us yesterday to do a shower and WC but he wasn’t sure whether he would return today(17th). As I write, he’s just rung to say he’s coming until midday when he’ll get further guidance. Watching French TV this morning it would appear artisans will be allowed to carry on so long as they, and their clients, are happy and that there are no more than 5 people ( in total) in the house.
The government and banks are planning to introduce financial assistance to businesses unable to trade and/or having cash flow problems so watch this space.
Pete and Rosy