Good morning folks
I trust this finds you fit, well, safe and sane!
I will keep this blog short and sweet, things are changing at such a ridiculous pace that I cannot keep up myself.
(In my history of hastily thrown together blogs, this is the hastiest by far. Apologies for slenderness of offerings).
A lot can happen in a week, even when you’re cooped up in your flat full-time, with a once-a-week escape outing to Metro.
The Government finally decided to get tough.
We still haven’t “spiked” here yet, even after 152 days in lockdown. AQP never actually left lockdown, Lima had its rules relaxed which seems to have caused higher numbers (surprise, surprise). That is why Lima lost its “free” Sundays, at least until the end of August, but will people just bring Sunday forward to Saturday?
The problem here is that if there are not crazily strict rules with steep fines, people just do what they blooming well like.
400 Police Officers have died, 24,000 are infected. Along with the doctors, medical workers and council workers, these are the front line. A bloody hard job in a bloody difficult time, I take my hat off to them, I really do.
20,000 Soldiers and Police were out on the streets of Lima alone this Sunday. With fines of up to s/6400 (£1367) on offer for being caught driving, one would think that the streets would have been empty, but dozens of punters have been caught out (literally) including 90 partygoers at a big Booze-up in SJL!
The Interior MInister was quoted as saying “I urge all our compatriots to comply with what is established, it’s not difficult to do so, it’s not difficult to wear a face mask, it’s not difficult to maintain social distancing, nor to wash our hands. Those are the three things we must do to protect ourselves, not just us, but our families too,”
How much does one believe the figures and which figures? Peru is currently in 6th spot Worldwide for number of cases and 9th with death toll. 26,000 deaths and 536,000 cases are reported so far. Not good.
Bloomin’ ‘eck! I never knew things would get so complicated so quickly…
In our 3-step plan, the house emptying is going slowly, but as of this coming Saturday we will be rid of all the big stuff (fridge,, sofa, washing machine, table, chairs, beds) and therefore have a bit more space to spread out all the stuff we have no space in our bags, looking ruefully at all the gear we will have to leave behind. A new minimalist life beckons! Our final week here will be interesting.
It is a case of sorting out the only-essential/irreplaceable stuff and taking about a quarter of it. The rest will be given away.
A phone call out of the blue midweek advised us to get out of AQP and up to Lima as quick as possible.
The “Salvoconducto” is a sacred document allowing land transport. There are no flights/buses now, so we have hired a taxi for the going rate of $800, (not bad considering it is 800 miles and to be honest I would pay with both kidneys right now!)
So, we are now due to leave la Ciudad Blanca on the 29th of this month. There is one rather significant condition to the Salvoconducto however…
We all need to have a Covid-19 Rapid Test and all need to test negative. If any of us do test positive (even if it is asymptomatic) we are quite literally screwed! There is no plan B, no escape route and no contingency. It would mean that we would be in an empty house with a very short lease and me with no job. I don’t want to think about this possibility…
We can only be guaranteed a Salvoconducto until the end of August, in September it might not be possible.
If we all pass-the-test, we will travel up to Lima and then hopefully catch out recently-booked flight with Air Europa as far as Madrid. This is the 5th attempt at buying a flight out of here.
KLM have scrapped all flight throughout September, so there are no other routes. I haven’t booked a connecting flight from Madrid to Blighty yet, just in case this first leg doesn’t happen.
In short, we are keeping everything crossed! (Any/all of the above could change before the next blog!)
Apologies, not had time to wipe my nose, nor scratch my backside (or is it vice-versa) this week. If/when we get to Lima perhaps we will get one done. Sorry :-/
The Nipper has enforced a new Bow rule on Sundays. As strict as el Presidente Vizcarra she is!
Feliz Dia de Arequipa!
August the 15th is el dia de Arequipa, this year the city celebrated 180 years of independence, but in a rather subdued manner. The Peruvian flags were taken down very soon after Fiestas Patrias and were all replaced with the AQP flag.
There is normally a race from the Plaza de Armas up to the summit of El Misti, but it didn’t happen this year. It is a one-way/uphill only race with big prize money, but cloaked in controversy when one runner allegedly took a taxi and/or bus part way last year! I would have fancied a crack at it under normal circumstances, but 5mths training on a flat roof would not have helped me much.
Would you like a refund Sir?
Said no airline, ever, at least not recently.
I understand that there are quite a few folk after their money back right now, and that companies cannot just give it all back right now. If I did get all the bra$$ back that I am currently owed by BA, KLM and LATAM, we could charter a private jet back!
BA were great the first time they cancelled our flights and did the refund in 24hrs, the second time took a week and the most recent timescale quoted for our third cancellation was 30-90 days.
KLM offer a 15% bonus if you request a credit note, or a 60-90 day refund (via a ridiculously over-complicated online refund system). Will be waiting a while for that then.
LATAM have taken 4 calls (and about 3hrs of being put on hold) up to now, returning precisely diddly-squat of our fares.
The first time I was promised a credit note (that never happened), the second time I was sent credit notes that were invalid, the 3rd time I was promised a refund which is still in process in cloud-cuckoo land and the most recent time I was sent credit notes, that are (wait for it) invalid! Joy…
I have lost any chance of getting my paws on my pension, but remain hopeful about my CTS!
One sliver of good news this week is that my CDE (Resident Visa) has finally been renewed after a tense 4 week wait.
No records broken, a watch that is going honey-nut-loops and knees that are gradually imploding.
The views are pretty good though 🙂
All about the Bass.
Plugging away, still struggling to learn how to read music and one finger has constant pins and needles, but Mr. Yousician keeps saying “Great keep playing like this and you’ll soon be rocking the stage!”
Not sure I quite believe him nor trust his enthusiasm, but it gives me 20mins to not think about all the other BS happening outside each day!
B&B of the week…
Manx brothers finest!
I am not a FB person these days, but if you were thinking about venturing outdoors and maybe visiting a restaurant, here are a few tips on how to behave and what to say!
(I am not normally such a serious, stroppy customer but this was about the 57th take after battling against the neighbour’s racket for a 2 minute window of P&Q…)
Britanico – In a restaurant video 🙂 (No FB account needed to watch video).
That’s all for now folks. Short one this week, hopefully a bit more beef next time.
Stay safe and stay sane!
Johnny and the girls