Getting Better

A very eventful month of May is gone. As the northern hemisphere gets closer to summer, let’s have a look at what is going on in different parts of the world.

On the 8th of May installment of these chronicles, I explained how France authorities were planning country re-opening. The process relies on a map, where each region is given a color: green, orange or red. The status of each region is periodically re-assessed taking into account three indicators.
France is officially entering phase-2 on the second of June and the maps have been updated.

Overall, the situation continues improving: only the Ile de France region is now labeled orange zone in the metropolitan France territory.

Italy is also going through a steady progress path. I noticed that the 7-days simple moving average of the number of new cases, which is today around five hundred units, has halved in the last two weeks. The same thing happened in the previous two weeks. Different regions are experiencing different trends: the situation is still critical in Lombardia and serious in Piemonte, Liguria and Emilia Romagna. Others are headed for full recovery: in six out of twenty-one Italian regions, no new case was recorded yesterday. While more and more business re-opens, the next milestone is set to the third of June, when European Union citizens will be allowed to enter Italy with no need for quarantine.

In my home, we are used to the new routines and one major highlight is that I will enter my reduced working time agreement next week. As the country is still closed there is not much that I can do, so I will try to keep some of these off days for future use.
Although some business will reopen on the second of June, I and my girlfriend will continue working from home and there is nothing new in view for us for at least two weeks.
We completed our first cycle of foreign language study: my girlfriend is learning French and I am going for German. We are now starting the second cycle, obviously online.
Today I successfully completed my fitness challenge: for the whole month of May I did one hundred push-ups and two minutes of plank every day. I am also running regularly, in a cautious way in order to prevent knee injuries.
My girlfriend runs with me sometime, or she does Yoga at home. She also got very passionate about kitchenware shopping lately. She is now very excited because of her recent purchase of a cast-iron skillet 😉
On my side, I would like to buy a new digital SLR camera.

Some countries are looking at restoring air traffic connecting with this part of the world. There was news recently about possible scheduled flights from and to China and Korea. The airport should be open for transit passengers somewhere in June.

As I reported on the 14th of May installment of these chronicles, South Korea is the cautionary tale that reminds us that it is not yet time to be complacent. The country reported last Thursday its biggest jump in coronavirus cases in more than 50 days. The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 67 of the 79 new cases were from the Seoul metropolitan area, where about half of South Korea’s 51 million people live. Following an emergency meeting, the government decided to shut public facilities such as parks, museums and state-run theatres in the metropolitan area over the next two weeks to slow the spread of the virus. Officials also advised private tutorial schools and computer gaming lounges in the area to close during the period or otherwise enforce anti-virus measures.


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