New York City

Things are changing so quickly! 2 days ago we were coming home in 10 days, today, we are coming tomorrow! After advisories yesterday from NZ government saying for “All Kiwis – please fly home” we came to an agonising decision to leave our house/pet sit and change our flights to this Friday, a week early. 10 days is a long time in this rapidly changing environment.  New York are threatening a “shelter in place” order, San Francisco has already implemented this. If this comes in then there will be no public transport. It is so hard to imagine a city as big and vibrant as New York coming to a grinding halt.

This morning we wake up to the news that NZ has completely closed her borders to everyone except for citizens. First time in history this has happened. So now we just hope that our flight which is still a day and a half away, will still fly. The good thing is is that we booked with Air New Zealand, of all the airlines, this should be the one which will still get through. What times we are in! You could never imagine this could be a thing, but it is. We have booked a separate ticket to LA from New York, We have given ourselves an extra 7 hours for the connection and hope this is going to be enough.

So now not only are the cafes and restaurants closed but the shopping malls and many shops. Our lovely friends in Thure keep on smiling, though we know it must be hitting them so hard. These ladies are the life blood of that community, how will they survive this? All the small businesses out there who don’t have multi million dollar back up, where will this leave them. So many people are going to be out of work, it will take time, when this is all over, for small businesses to recover. It really is a nightmare of the biggest proportions. We made great friends with 2 café owners in Leros, both of them, along with the rest of the island, have had to close their doors also. I don’t think there is 1 person in this whole world who is not being touched by this virus in some way or another. They might not be getting sick, in fact, very few will, but they will be totally knocked to the ground with it.

We have met a wonderful lady here in Breezy Point, Diane. She has offered to take us to the airport in the morning, and take over feeding the lovely Mac and Jack. We feel so blessed and humbled to have met so many amazing people during our travels. I have said this many times during these wee stories, that it is the people that make the place, it is the people that we meet that endears us most to a country/town/city and I cannot express enough of the love and friendship we have received, its hard to find the words. Thank you. Thank you for being part of our life, which is so much richer for your presence in it xx

We arrive back in NZ on Sunday morning 0700. My wonderful daughter Tayla will be there to pick us up and take us to our isolation spot. It is a relief to be going home!

Keep safe everyone – wash your hands!
And keep smiling, it will all be OK!