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The mood has completely changed – Corona Update March 13

While people and daily life still seemed very normal at the beginning of this week, this has now changed, almost overnight.

Yesterday, everything started changing throughout the day. The Coronavirus Infection rate was rising at an unbelievable speed, and it’s still accelerating.

While we only had about 5 cases about two weeks ago, there were a 100 cases on March 8. Two and a half days later we reached 200. Yesterday in the morning, we had about 300, by the evening we had 361. This morning, we had over 400 and by now, 3pm on March 13, the case count has already reached 504.

The separate case counts for each of Austria’s states is as follows:

Lower Austria (63), Vienna (82), Styria, which is our state (52), Tyrol (167), Upper Austria (84), Salzburg (23 – davon 3 Personen nicht in Salzburg aufhältig), Burgenland (7), Vorarlberg (22) und Carinthia (4).

Yesterday, Styria had 28 and the day before that 18, and the day before that around 11.

While more new measures were planned by our government yesterday, rumours started spreading.

It started yesterday morning. Rumours that were saying that absolutely everything, including supermarkets, pharmacies and all government offices (including social welfare, national health, health department etc) will close down next week. I knew right away it wasn’t true and I tried my best to keep telling people it’s not true.

The government was simply working out the next important steps to help contain the outbreak, and the first couple of these measures were presented in a press conference yesterday in the afternoon. In that press conference, the government also said that more measures are being planned and to be announced the next day (today). At the same time, they were also stressing that these rumours floating around are false.

Supermarkets, pharmacies, banks, government offices, post/mail and basically everything that is important for the country, daily life, the infrastructure and it’s people will remain open no matter what. They said that potential closures and restrictions will only be implemented on branches and services that people can easily live without for a few weeks. They also again begged people to stay home as much as possible if they can in their free time or if they’re retired or at home for other reasons anyway. For other companies, they said that companies should try to have as many people as possible work from their home.

The point is basically to try to stop as much unnecessary movement of people as possible for a while.

Yesterday, a pharmacy in the city was already limiting the amount of people who were able to enter at the same time. Only 3 people were allowed in the pharmacy at once.

Today, that same pharmacy was serving people only through the hatch in the door.

Then this morning, more rumours were spreading which caused widespread panic buying

Early this morning, some more rumours were floating around and spreading like wildfire. Some rumours were still the same and others were new. Today the rumours said that absolutely all stores, pharmacies, gas stations and banks will close down by midday today and that a curfew will be implemented for the nighttime starting Monday.

These rumours, paired with the shocking rise in coronavirus infections over the last 24 hours, caused people to actually panic today.

People started panic buying in such numbers, that there were massively long lines in front of the supermarkets. It kept getting progressively worse all day. The shelves are now empty pretty much. Even shortly after the supermarkets had opened for the day, shelves were emptied within a short time. Some stores were hit worse than others, depending on their location.

Long lines of people waiting to get into one of the larger grocery stores in a mall not far away from us. It was like that at most supermarkets. (Source: KronenZeitung krone.at/2116507)

I heard from my friend, who lives just a block away from us, that she saw people ripping food out of each others hands at the store. Then we heard that one Aldi (called Hofer in Austria), located in a rather bad area, had been pretty much wrecked by people ripping open packages and simply being rowdy and selfish.

Mostly it was long long lines in front of grocery stores. People were running into banks and building lines in front of ATMs. In turn, many ATMs were out of order by the early afternoon.

What also did not help was that nothing was being done about people taking way too much at once for themselves in the grocery stores (for example one person/family buying up all the milk).

The media and government kept repeating on TV, radio and on the internet, that the supermarkets will not close and that the supply of goods will keep going. Yet, people were panic buying all day.

My Dad said that all of the bread was gone within a short time after the stores opened in the morning. I hope the panic buying will calm down again over the course of next week, when people see that the supermarkets will not close down and that they also continue to be restocked regularly. , starting yesterday morning and still, new false rumours are spreading. There were rumours that everything will be closed down, and a curfew will be implemented. None of it is true though.

The actual new measures that were announced by the government today

  • All schools, including high schools, elementary schools and kindergartens, as well as universities and any education facilities will close by Wednesday. Universities and higher education will be closed on Monday already. But students can stay home already if they can.
  • Restaurants, pubs, cafés etc, have to close by 3pm in the afternoon. So nightclubs and anything else that would be open all night, will stay closed completely. They want to avoid all those many people coming together every night, especially during the weekends, while going out.
  • All sports events are cancelled
  • Some areas in Tyrol, which is especially badly hit by the outbreak in Austria, will be put under quarantine.
  • Supermarkets, banks, pet supply stores, pharmacies, tobacconists, public transport, post and mail services and other essential parts of society, like all facilities and companies that are important for all the infrastructure in Austria (including Telephone and Internet), will not be closed at any point
  • Public transport: Trams and Busses will automatically open the doors for entry and exit at every stop, so people won’t have to use the buttons to open them. Only the trams and busses will be used that have a separate cabin for the drivers to protect them
  • People are asked to stay home, unless it is absolutely necessary and can’t be avoided. People should gather with friends and family for now and instead use other means (internet, phone) to stay in contact.

Some news regarding my medication supply

I had put in a request to get my pain medication supply home with me for the next 3 1/2 weeks, so that I would not have to go out anymore at all within that time, to protect Ralph more.

Though I got a call this morning from my doctors office, informing me that the health department has said, that nobody is getting their medicine home for a longer period of time, even if they have plenty of their time allowance left, which I did. No exceptions. I’m sure the reason for that is that this measure stops people from moving and leaving the city and their areas. Since everyone is tied to their medicine, by having to go to the pharmacy all the time, nobody can leave, which stops even more movement from and to different places.

On the other hand, I also got some reassuring news. Apparently, my pharmacy will not close down, even if it gets worse. The way it will work is that all customers are basically outside the pharmacy, while the staff is behind the door, which has a little hatch, through which everyone is being served. Those hatches exist for the night shifts, where people are being served through those hatches as well.

Either way, the government does not seem to implement things in a chaotic manner. Therefore, no matter what, if the health department has to think of something else to make sure that all patients continue to receive their medications, then they most likely will. Everything now is being implemented as things are happening. I’m feeling better regarding that and not as worried as I had been before.

Our plan for the next month (or beyond if it’s neccessary)

Ralph and I will stay home for the next weeks, or for how long it’s going to be necessary. Our supplies last for about two months, including the supplies for the cats. But we are still able to order things online as well for now, which I am doing too.

That means I will only go out to the pharmacy, on my bicycle, on a street where I don’t really come across many people and where I am not close to other people anyway. Also, the pharmacy is only 4 minutes from us if I use my bicycle. Additionally, the pharmacy itself is quite spacey and you don’t really come too close to people in there, especially now, as people are avoiding the pharmacies as much as possible, which is good for me.

The risk is still not extremely high that I could catch the virus while in the pharmacy, or outside of it. I also try to keep as much distance between me and anyone, and I keep disinfecting my hands constantly. When I get home, I take off my shoes outside the apartment and then I walk straight in to wash myself, before I put my clothes away and wash myself again.

No matter how crazy this might sound, I rather do everything I possibly can to lower the risk to Ralph and myself.

It’s now eerily quiet and empty in the streets

I was out at about 4pm, which is normally very busy on Friday. But even the busiest street was very empty. Hardly any cars. Hardly any people. And now at night, nobody is out. It’s totally quiet and empty in the street as far as I can see.

One supermarket I passed by was dark for some reason. Looked like they had to close down for some reason. I also saw people with loads of boxes of groceries, and big bags full of the same, entering their apartment buildings, or carrying the shopping home. I also saw long lines in front of Tobacconists in the city centre. Our area wasn’t like that thankfully.

It was already very weird and quiet everywhere. Even our building is quiet. Normally you would hear people getting ready to go out on a Friday night, but there is no one going now. There is no music being heard from anywhere, no friends coming over. People are just in their homes, possibly a bit in a state of shock.

I would not be surprised if some rather bad people will try to use the emptiness of city streets for bad things. We are thankfully in a safe area anyway, but I still closed down the shutters in front of our street facing window. I’m always rather safe.

There will be more restrictions coming, but I prefer that to not doing anything. The more people are stopped from moving, the faster the numbers will stop climbing, while the number of people who have recovered, will increase. Everyone who can needs to stay where they are, all over Europe. Just for a while, so that this nightmare can come to an end sooner, rather than later.

Lets please get through this ok and then celebrate once it’s over.

Be careful and keep in touch. I’ll keep you all updated anyway. Ralph, the cats and I are still perfectly fine ❤ I’m now off to bed, as it’s way past midnight and I’m tired.

Love from us and the cats to all of you!

Good night from Sonic and Lisa in our fluffy comfy bed
Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Bathroom and wet walls update – August 11, 2019

Finally getting back to my blog! I always miss it so much. But I’m horribly unable to post as long as I’m feeling anxious. The bathroom problem kept my anxiety high for no real reason, but my anxiety is always over the top for every little worry. I wish I could get rid of it. Though most of the time I’m fine, so I’m actually lucky.

Anyway, I seem to be in a much better headspace today, thanks to my awesome Ralph, who constantly reminds me that there is nothing to worry about at all.

The Bathroom and the wet walls
Last time I left off shortly before somebody was coming by to look for the source of the humidity in the walls of the hallway/stairwell. Back then, we had no idea what to expect and we thought in the worst case we could have a total construction site in our bathroom.

Thankfully that’s not the case. The contractor from a company specialising in finding leaks in buildings and fixing it came by on July 22. He measured the humidity, measured the position of the wet spots in the stairwell and measured the position of the taps in the bathroom and some other things. It seems the humidity comes from the shower tap, and it’s not a broken water pipe. There are apparently two things wrong.

One is the plate that should protect the area behind it and the inside of the wall from shower water:

ShowerTap
The plate behind this tap is not sealed off properly, so shower water gets behind it and into the wall. It’s by now bent and a bit messed up after it had been taken off and put back on many times when it was checked out, which happened on multiple occasions.

So this plate was not sealed off properly and every time we had a shower, water would get behind it and into the wall. In addition, the tap itself drips slightly when the water is turned on. So both things together caused humidity to collect and cause the wet stains in the hallway/stairwell outside.

Though, there have been stains like that already before that have been here since before we even moved in. So what happened was probably that the stains were caused by the woman who lived in our apartment before us already. But after she moved out, the apartment was empty for quite a while and so the stains dried and so nobody worried about it (knowing the building will be renovated in the near future).

Therefore when we moved in, those already existing stains became wet again slowly over time. So, of course, no one noticed, since you would have to look closely to notice that the stains are humid. It probably was the people from the company that cleans the building that called the building management about the humidity in the stains.

That means that the tap has to be changed to a new one and the new plate needs to be properly sealed. Since it was not our fault that is was like that and because there was nothing you would have noticed from inside our apartment, I felt that we should not really have to pay for the changing of the tap. Which is why I contacted the building management about it.

Shortly afterwards, somebody from our landlord called us because he wanted to have a look at the problem himself and talk to us. He came round and wasn’t really worried about it. I just showed him where it was and what had to be done. He said that they will sort it out. He also told me that the stains all over in the stairwell have been there for years.

Then on Friday afternoon, I got a call from the landlord’s insurance company about it. He asked me about it all again and he also needs to come by and have a look at it, which will be on Tuesday morning. Of course, that caused me anxiety to spike again…

I just want it to be over with and fixed, so I don’t have to worry about it anymore.

Back when the contractor came on July 22, the cats really had a difficult and confusing morning…
Since I had no idea what to expect and because I took a possible construction site with multiple workmen into consideration, I moved all the cat’s stuff into the bed and living room and the hallway in between. Then I closed the door, so they could not get into the rest of the apartment (hallway, kitchen, bathroom, toilet…)

Needless to say… they weren’t exactly happy. They were totally confused as to what’s going on.

Whats_going_on_20190722_01
Sonic: “What’s going on Mum?”

Yes, Sonic was totally confused as to why his toilet is over there all of a sudden. Also, the water fountain had moved a bit and the cat food has moved from it’s the normal spot to the right of the cat fountain. In addition, Murli’s big bed moved from the kitchen to this little table in the corner.

Whats_going_on_20190722_02
Stuff is all in the wrong place

Murli’s toilet moved into the bedroom… (Samantha goes on both toilet btw, it’s only Murli and Sonic that keep to their fav ones.)

Whats_going_on_20190722_04

While the door to the rest of the apartment was still open, Murli walked around and was really confused as to why her toilet was gone after having a look inside. The slightly open door you see is the door to our toilet. The human toilet, which is where her toilet usually is.

Whats_going_on_20190722_03
Murli in the hallway

Also, my bicycle, which is normally in our rather wide hallway, was now on the balcony.

Whats_going_on_20190722_06

So after finishing off with moving everything, I closed the door to keep the cats in the bedroom and living room area. There was lots of meowing and scratching at the door from Murli. Sonic and Samantha just sat in front of it quietly for a while. All of them looked thoroughly confused.

But thankfully it did not take long at all. So I was able to put everything back to normal soon later again.

The contractor will come to measure the humidity in the walls again a while later after the tap in our shower has been replaced with a new one and the plate sealed. If the humidity decreases after that, then it will be clear that it was just the shower tap causing the wet walls.

We’ve got household insurance now!
I finally got us household insurance, and I found a really great one too by comparing all household insurances and insurance companies. I should have done that a long time ago really. This insurance protects us really well. If I had gotten it much sooner, it would have covered anything we might have to pay to get the tap changed. We might not have to pay anything, it all depends on what the landlord’s insurance company will do after the appointment on Tuesday morning. Still, I feel much better just having it now. It’s not even expensive at all, which is awesome.

I’m working on a second post right now, because it would have been way too much to put everything in one single post.

Hope you all had a nice weekend and have a wonderful remaining Sunday!

Everything · Murli the cat · Places · Ralph and I · The Cats

September 12, 2017 – Finally! The last few days before we’re together in Austria!

Wow! It’s been over a month now since I came back from Spain and since I last wrote an update. As you probably already read on my dear Ralph’s post, things have been stressful and worrying for a while, as we were looking for a removal company and as we tried to figure out a way to bring the cats to Austria. It was especially stressful for Ralph. I worried a lot myself, which is why I did not post on my blog like I had wanted to. I usually can’t do things I enjoy doing when I’m anxious or worried for some reason. My mind was all with Ralph and the cats, Murli’s new siblings, Sonic and Samantha.

Basically, from the first day of me being back in Austria, Ralph and I started to organise and arrange everything necessary for the big move… and it just never stopped. At first things were not easy, as we tried to sort out a transport for the cats and Ralph’s belongings to Austria. But either the companies we contacted did not reply at all, or they were simply outrageously expensive. One removal company we had first wanted to use, only does moves to the UK and from the UK. The same thing was true for the animal courier company we wanted to use at first. We wrote to a couple of others, and either we got no reply (despite multiple tries from both of us), or they also only served moves from and to the UK, or they were outrageously expensive as well.

So this is how things went…

The first change we decided on, was that we’ll get our new apartment together, as we want the contract to be in both our names, and we both need to be here for that. It’s going to be quick with the new apartment, once Ralph is here with the cats. I already have an apartment in mind for us that we might take. But we’ll decide about that together.

So for the time until we have our apartment, I have found us a B&B that allows guests to bring their pets. It’s not far from the city centre, and everything we need is close by. My kitty girl Murli will be staying with my Dad until we have the apartment, as Sonic and Samantha will have been through enough stress by the time they’re in Graz, and it would not be a good time to introduce Murli to them on top of everything else. The cats already know each other smells, as I sent Ralph toys I made, which I filled with Murli’s fur. And I have Samantha and Sonic’s fur for Murli. She always starts purring and rubs her head into the little toy that I filled with Sonic and Samantha’s fur.

Another change was the transport of the cats themselves. Since we had no luck with the animal courier companies, we thought about having them transported by themselves via an Airline. But, turns out it’s actually much easier, at least nowadays, to fly together with your cats. Not all airlines want to transport animals in the hold and only allow one cat and carrier per person in the cabin. The carrier would be put underneath the seat in front of you. Since Ralph flies alone and has two cats, we had to see which Airline would transport pets in the hold. Thankfully, one of the Airlines that flies from Malaga to Vienna, does what we need.

Shortly before, Ralph had finally found a removals company that will transport everything to Austria for a reasonable price. And then, once we had a date for the removals truck to arrive at Ralph’s home in Spain, he was able to book his flight and then also book the cats onto his flight! That big worry was finally over with! We finally had transport for the apartment contents and a flight for Ralph and the cats.

Meanwhile, I found us a storage place in Graz, that is really nice, flexible, and they were very kind and helpful, with the price being totally fine. So it’s no problem to have Ralph’s belongings transported to Graz and directly put into the storage place I rented.

The last important step for the cats has been done yesterday in the afternoon, as Sonic and Samantha got their health certificates and all important stamps and stickers in their cute little blue passports. So everything is set for Ralph and the kitties to fly! Yay!

After a month with emotional up and downs, during which we didn’t know when exactly we would see each other again, we finally had a countdown to a certain date:

The plane will land shortly before midnight on Friday the 15th in Vienna. Because of that, I had booked us a hotel room near the airport, where we and the cats can relax and get a good nights sleep. Then towards noon on Saturday, we’ll get on the train to Graz. If I had not booked a hotel room, we would have had to hang around the airport all night, to take the first train to Graz. Which would have been no fun at all and especially not fair on the cats.

Ralph will leave for the airport in Malaga at about the same time as I will leave here to take the bus to Vienna Friday afternoon. I’ll arrive at the airport in Vienna at 7:10pm, where I will buy a couple of things for us in the grocery store there and then check into the Hotel. I’ll be at the hotel when Ralph will still be at the airport. Then I’ll follow his flight to Austria on flightradar24.com just like he did with my flight to Spain. Then, about half an hour or so before the plane will be due to land, I’ll be at the airport.

It will be one of the most relieving and happy moments ever to see Ralph and the cats again! Finally in Austria, to start our life together. I’ll be celebrating that day every year, that’s for sure. And I’ll be taking pictures of Ralph and the cats at Vienna airport too, so I can share it with you all☺

Oh I will be so very glad when Ralph and the cats have safely arrived in Vienna. Yay! Just a few more days now…

I’ll post a short update from the hotel room in Vienna when Ralph, the cats and i are finally reunited.

Lots of love from Murli and I and thank you all so much for your love and kindness❤

Everything · Pictures · Social media · The Cats

June 27, 2017 Blog, keeping up and health news

Good evening from Murli and I in Austria!

Wow… the time just really flew since my last post. Finally, I think I can use my eyes normally again and do everything normally. Like keeping up with you sweet friends!

I thought about a lot of things, and the way I just can’t seem to keep up with all of my accounts. I keep feeling bad and guilty for not being able to get to all of your wonderful blogs and posts, and take way too long to get back to comments at times. Therefore,  I decided that I will concentrate just on Murli’s and my blog here. My google+ and Facebook will be updated normally, because every post I publish here, is automatically posted to my Facebook for the furends I have on there, and my Facebook is just a private thing anyway and it’s not difficult to keep up with there. The google+ I update manually. I have met so many absolutely wonderful friends through all of these accounts. I just can’t seem to keep up with my Twitter anymore especially and even have difficulties to keep up on my instagram, which is sad as I have found so many wonderful cats and catfriends on there as well.

What I will do is publish a picture to instagram with a link, every time I post a new blog post here. I will also put a link with an explanation onto my Twitter profile, and probably link to this post. So that everyone wondering what’s up with me and Murli, can just come here and read about it.

I just really love love love WordPress and my blog and reading all of your wonderful blog posts. Murlis and my life really needs this outlet here, as well as the communication with all of you sweeties. I just want to be there for every one of you properly. I know many of you have so many things going on in their lives and I want to be there and offer the support of my and Murlis friendship.

As for the eyestrain I had going on…. It started after the frightening situation I wrote about in my previous post. At around that time, I typed and read a lot of text on my computer, for at least two days without proper breaks. In addition I was sleep deprived for days on end on top of it all. Then one day I noticed that I felt increasing pain behind my eyes and in the area of the brows. I never get normal headaches really, just migraines. In short, it turned out to be Eyestrain. Therefore I reduced my writing and reading on the computer.

On to a wonderful thing that is happening! As most of you will know, I have almost daily migraines normally and have had them since childhood. I just really have many triggers that cause an attack. But it’s been an amazing month! Suddenly I don’t have that many migraines anymore. Basically, I have almost none. The only one I got were caused by physical exhaustion last week on Wednesday or so. But I’ve been going weeks now without migraines for the most part. It seems to improve more and more. Usually I would have had migraines from the Foehn wind that has been going on for most days again recently, but I didn’t get them, not even one! So amazing!

I had severe and very frequent migraines ever since my early childhood. It was pretty much always the same for most of my life. But I suddenly feel better than I had felt for a long long time. Not just because the migraines have been less recently, but I feel really great generally. Much more energy, and a lot more relaxed and comfortable.

Many of the usual triggers that will usually cause migraines, aren’t causing trouble now. As if the Foehn wind doesn’t have any effect on it suddenly. Triggers like sudden pressure changes before a severe storm haven’t caused problems either. There are many more triggers that cause migraines for me, normally. I am just thankful, very thankful for every day I can live life normally.

Murli and I are doing great and we will be back to post normally again and with the change of me concentrating on our blog, we’ll be much more responsive.

I hope you are all doing fine? Murli and I send out lots of love to you all, and we say thank you for everyone’s constant patience, kindness and understanding. Have a lovely day sweet furends!

June 18 2017 7:28am