Life in Lock Down: Day 3




Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations


March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago.

Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, pat and fed my companion animal. Finished off Day 2 blogpost in time to watch Newshub Nation. Listened to Dr Sandhya Ramanathan describe the extraordinary lengths to carefully decontaminate before and after leaving her hospital,  followed by further decon-protocols at her home.

It made the precautions we are taking for our clients seem so utterly amateurish. But considering my employers (a nationwide NGO) have no Pandemic Policy in place that I’m aware off, we’ve used our initiative and common sense.

Political commentators Neale Jones and Matthew Hooton were both singing from the same “song sheet”. There’s nothing quite like an amoral, apolitical, non-sentient deadly virus to focus the mind.

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As I begin this blogpost, it was raining  heavily. Normally not a weather situation I’d be happy with, but today and for the next three weeks, it is a blessing from Nature. It may help keep people off the streets, parks, beaches, etc, and (except for short walks in their immediate area) stay at home;



I won’t be driving around today to observe what others are doing. Which restricts my reporting, but if I’m to follow my own demands of others – I stay home. Aside from short walks along my own road, observing strict two metre rule, staying home means staying home.

Which made some of the emails/txts read out by Kim Hill all that much difficult to stomach. Idiots were justifying why the rules did not apply to them and why, as surfers and mountain bikers, they were more expert at judging risk than all the medical professions in the world.

As at today, the number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand has jumped by eightythree cases and now stands at 451.

But these thrill seeking morons on surf boards and mountain bikes seem to think they are bullet proof? Or virus proof?

I can only surmise these surfers and bikers have had a few to many knocks to their soft skulls.

Spent the day…

Breakfast (coffee, toast with tomato and toast with fresh, ripe fig).

Shower. Coffee.

Watched “Newshub Nation“. Sent “tweet” to “Nation” producers; “Anyone else thanking the gods that production of masks is a local NZ industry and not “exported” to overseas manufacturers… like China?


Brunch. Coffee.


Finish Day 2 of “Living under the Lock Down“.



Watched Seth Myers on Youtube calling out Trump for his lack of action on the virus epidemic hitting the US. Evidently, Trump’s approval ratings now stands at 49 to 60%, of  Americans saying he’s doing a “good job“. Wait till the body count starts to mount up, and footage of body bags fills the evening television news. Footage like that killed public support for American involvement in the Vietnam War.



Listened to Ministry of Health press conference. Covid19 cases now up to 451. Two are in ICU. John Ombler, the All of Government Controller, was blunt when he called out spectacularly moronic behaviour from some people;

“I have heard today that some people were playing touch rugby and frisbee in parks, that’s just stupid. People need to stop doing that sort of thing. COVID can transfer on a frisbee from one person to another. With touch rugby, it is quite obvious. Please, don’t do it. Don’t be stupid.”


Email to my organisation regarding possible ‘re-jigging’ of our rosters and number of clients we attend to. (The fewer clients, the smaller our ‘bubble’.)


Afternoon tea

Twitter. A bit of laundry washing.

4.30PM: Did I just see what I think I saw out my window? Guy drives up in white canopied hilux ute. Ute has a company logo on the side relating to an early childhood company;



Guy goes inside a house, by himself. Comes out about ten minutes later with two children (around 8 to 10 years old?). Woman comes with them. Was she providing a child care service? Were they a separated couple? Whichever the case, it appears that two children are moving between two adults, as well as both having adult-to-adult contact.

I sincerely hope they constitute one “bubble”. What is the likelihood?




Late afternoon tea

Watched 6PM TV1 News. Shouted myself to a bowl of (sugar free) chocolate ice cream.

7PM: Went for walk around my block. Weather was autumnal, overcast, chilly, but had stopped raining. Must have seen five other human beings in my walk. One followed the two metre distance perfectly, giving me a wide circle; gave him a wave, cheery smile, and a big “Thank You!”

I usually pick up plastic detritus along the way; bottles, tops, coffee cup lids, straws, lollypop sticks, etc. Tonight I touched nothing. Not worth the risk.

The Kiwirail Park’n’Ride carpark was utterly empty. Not even one vehicle;



Came home, put on Julee Cruise CD for some soft-but-dark background music. When the world feels like it’s falling apart (due in no short part to the human tendency for self-destructive dumbness), you want an appropriate soundtrack. Either Ms Cruise or Smashing Pumpkins’ “The Beginning Is The End Is The Beginning“.

9PM(ish): Phoned my partner. We don’t live together and because I work in the community, with a larger-than-desirable-“bubble”, we have decided to isolate from each other. She has her “bubble”, I have mine. If I catch covid19 – which is more likely than her getting it – I won’t be able to infect her. So for one month, we chat over the phone but nothing more.

I work in the community and am at higher risk than most othersWe are foregoing contact to mitigate risk to her.  All these things, I do because it is necessary.

So people will excuse me and understand why when I see others casually disregarding keeping to a “bubble”; not observing the two-metre protocol;  enjoying themselves with frisbees, surfing, boating, and other thoughtless behaviour… I am more than a wee bit miffed. Their’s is the sharp end of self-entitlement.

Watched some America news channel news clips on You Tube. The slow disintergration of the United States is like a driving past a vast car pile-up on the motor-way; grimly fascinating. You don’t want to watch the carnage… but you can’t help yourself, wondering what is next.

With my companion cat on my lap, time for a brief check on Twitter. Received lovely compliment re Day 2 of my Lock Down diary. Sent back reply.

And then… This;



Simon Bridges just can’t f*****g help himself, can he?!?

I responded;

Come on,Mr Bridges,really?!There are umpteen sources of news. Closing nonessential ones -even if distasteful- may save lives If you have concerns,do what adults do: talk to each other. Its what youre paid to do Ive stopped using the nationalnotfittogovern. You stop politicking

Time for bed.  Maybe read another chapter of SS-GB, an alternative Earth history novel by Len Deighton. Then lights out and see what tomorrow brings. TVNZ’s Q+A is on at 9AM, then…?


For those people who do not understand the manner in which contagion spreads, Dr Siouxsie Wiles, microbiologist sums it up in simple terms;

“Because people can spread the virus for a few days before they have any symptoms, each person who contracts the virus can unwittingly pass it on to several of their whānau, friends and colleagues. Then each one of them can unwittingly pass it on to several of their whānau, friends and colleagues. This means that if, left unchecked, the number of cases grows exponentially. This is what we are seeing in so many countries overseas. Spinoff cartoonist Toby Morris’s illustration of that concept has circled the globe in recent days.” – Siouxsie Wiles, 26 March 2020

And for those simple souls who still don’t get it, illustrator Toby Morris has drawn a pretty picture with crayons;






Newshub Nation:  I don’t want to be a hero, I want to live

Twitter: JackyNinjaKitty – “Stay at Home” – 28 March 2020

RNZ: Coronavirus – 83 new cases in New Zealand, two patients in intensive care

NPR:  Trump’s Approval Hits New High, But A Rally-Around-The-Flag Effect Is Small

US History:  The Vietnam War

Mediaworks/Newshub:  Coronavirus – Infected being abused online, Kiwis ignoring rules by playing sport

Twitter: Simon Bridges – closure community papers – 28 March 2020

The Spinoff:  Siouxsie Wiles & Toby Morris – You’re waking up in lockdown New Zealand. Here’s how it works

Previous related blogposts

The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus

Life in Lock Down: Day 1

Life in Lock Down: Day 2





Acknowledgement: Slane


This blogpost will be re-published on “Frankly Speaking“. Reader’s comments may be left here (The Daily Blog) or there (Frankly Speaking).



= fs =



  1. Simple, if they go swimming , kyaking . hunting or what ever and get into trouble, don,t go save them.

    • Easy to say, easy for some to ignore others in danger but most will try to help.

      Where do you draw the line and if it is ignored, then lock down is lost and the virus will proliferate.

      Those with juvenile minds need strong guidance, from the Police, and courts where necessary.
      Perhaps a few examples need to be made as a reference point for the foolish and irresponsible

      Others should not be penalised for the deliberate transgressions of numbskulls.

  2. Walk, walk, walk, (just stay away from other people when you do it!)

    It’s not just the coronavirus killing people, it is obesity and 1 in 3 adults in NZ are obese!

    Scary stuff from NHS in the UK…

    Covid-19 patients in UK intensive care have 50% survival rate

    “The report also found that though the majority of those who have died from coronavirus across the UK were over 70, nine of the 79 who died in intensive care were aged between 16 and 49, as were 28 of the 86 who survived.

    The audit suggested that men are at much higher risk from the virus – seven in ten of all ICU patients were male, while 30% of men in critical care were under 60, compared to just 15% of women. Excess weight also appears to be a significant risk factor; over 70% of patients were overweight, obese or clinically obese on the body mass index scale.”

  3. Cheers Frank. Always interesting to hear how others are spending their lockdown.

    Husband and myself living on the outskirts of beautiful Cromwell, pottering about the garden, reading, clearing out accumulated rubbish, playing cards, doing puzzles and of course our daily (albeit shortened local) early morning walk before breakfast. Oh and did I say reading? Not many people out and about and those who are, are always polite, smiling, saying good morning/morena, respecting the two metre distance, as we do as well.

    However down here in this spectacular part of NZ, living with the magnificent mountains and lake on our doorstep, it’s very hard to imagine our world is extremely sick at the present time.

    Kia kaha. Stay safe, take good care and keep well all TDB contributors and readers.

    • Thank you, Mary. All the best to you and your family and friends as well.

      As at 1pm, we have had New Zealand’s first death and the covid19 toll has reached 514.

      If this does not focus the minds of some people not to treat the lock down as an impromptu “holiday”, I don’t know what will.

      Again, stay safe.

  4. Can others confirm my understanding of the following two situations. Both of which has me differing with my friends.
    1) One friend regular visiting family member (neither in need of care) because ‘neither of us’ has the virus and I can’t stay alone for 4 weeks. …….I disagreed this was following the guide lines.
    2) Friends drives to supermarket, ride bike to a friends house (about 7 kms away), but stays at least two metres away when socialising. Then cycle to my place, en-route back to supermarket, and collect ‘my garden produce’ from the gate where I put it. I stayed 10 metres away when we chatted. …….I again suggested this wasn’t following the rules.
    Am I wrong?

    • Kevin, my understanding is that scenario 1 is dangerous and the “friend regular visiting family member” has compromised their “bubble”.

      Jonathan Smith puts it far more succinctly here:

      With Scenario number 2, my understanding is that as long as produce is washed; the two metre distance is observed, it’s (relatively) safe. The supermarket thing is different. The few visits the better. And maintain that 2 metre gap – which is extraordinarily more difficult than I imagined.

      Oh, and I would wipe all packaged items with a cloth soaked in disinfectant. You don’t know who else has handled that can of peaches you bought and the virus can survive up to three days on hard surfaces (2 days on cardboard).

  5. I will go to my (written off as COVID 19) death with my last words being “sorry can’t buy into this scam”.

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