TOGETHER ON OUR OWN
BELGIUM MARCH-AUGUST 2020
CORONA DIARY, LOCKDOWN 1.0
Belgium declared a lockdown-light for the entire country over the coronavirus crisis from Friday 13 march on, following the example of several European countries. The population is urged to stay at home; working from home becomes the new norm. People are only allowed to go out in an emergency or to pharmacies and doctors. All non-essential stores are closed while supermarkets, food stores, deliveries remain open following strict rules. Any gatherings and meetings are prohibited. Outdoor sports activities are allowed. Care should be taken to maintain 1,5m distance from other people. Public transport continues, guaranteeing social distancing. Only when restrictions become lenient wearing masks in crowded public places become obligated.
For us, at home this means a small adjustment. I live with 3 other adults on the outskirts of Ghent in an old mansion with a large walled garden. The outside world was already barely noticeable before. Because we are at home more often, we’ve grown closer together. The confinement cocoon at home contrasts sharply with the emptiness on the street. Posters, messages on windows, police and social control tell you to distance yourself. On the street, the isolation of society becomes even more apparent. An alternative to escape the prevailing fear; is found in food or sports, supermarkets and nature become entertainment parks.