I love post-apo games, even some movies are ok, but I have never thought I will live in one! That’s how it currently feels in the world with the Covid-19 panic. A nearly empty street, most businesses closed, no street food, not many people on the streets but those who are there all wear masks!!! Just a few days ago life was going as normal here. Yes, some people wore masks, but it’s quite normal in Asia anyway, but shops and restaurants were open as usual. We all heard about the virus spreading fast but since there were no many confirmed cases in Vietnam we didn’t see much panic like in Europe and the USA.
And then from one day to another everything changed. Nobody expected it. We certainly didn’t. In fact, we felt pretty safe and lucky to be here. We thought the Vietnamese government was well prepared for this. From the first moment when we came to Vietnam and were asked to fill up the health declaration form right at the airport. We also like the idea of a security guard in shopping malls asking people to wear a mask and spraying hands with hand sanitiser before entering the shop. When we came here the total confirmed cases in Vietnam was only 64 and no deaths.
Then from one day to the other things started to change. First, all the restaurants got closed. There was some official document from business owners, but also to ensure that it is followed police were walking down the streets and asking to close the premises. All street food was still working though, so for some reason, it was only for “proper” restaurants and bars. At the same time, we noticed that some tourist attractions started to close as well. But not all. That went on for a few days.
Next thing was a bit strange in our opinion. Our Airbnb host sent us a message that homeowners and hotels are not allowed to take any new tenants until 15 April. He even sent me an official document.
At the same time, all non-essential businesses had to close so at this point street food disappeared too. The only things allowed were pharmacies, medical facilities and food providers. We have seen and could understand closing all the shops and stuff, but why would they block people who are already here to move to another apartment? We understand that they want to reduce people moving and going out in general, but since borders are already closed and no new tourists are coming to Vietnam what is the reason to block them from changing the address?
Anyway, our host offered to extend our stay in his apartment if we needed to. Obviously, for him it’s even better because he won’t get other tenants on our place anyway. It wasn’t not so good for us though because we have already found a slightly better place to stay in. The place we were in was not bad at all. It was actually really nice, but it was a studio and we decided we need a separate bedroom because we often sleep at different times and in the studio we simply disturb each-other with small noises like boiling kettle for example. Anyway, we found it strange that they would block something like that…
Another new thing we noticed were very early each morning there were loud announcements from a car driving around on the streets. We have no idea what it said, but it sure woke us up.
At this point, everyone is required to wear masks and those who don’t are fined. Streets are nearly completely empty even at peak times. All tourist attractions are closed now. At least the shops are full of everything you may need. Unlike in western countries, people here don’t stock up with everything they can. Definitely not with toilet paper – that’s just dumb even for us. I’ve read in the local news that the government ensures that there will not be food shortage and there is no point in panic buying… and people don’t! Can you believe that?!
So how our life changed during Post Apo world?
It didn’t. Not much anyway. We still work 5 days a week. Still go for shopping on weekends and order food delivery on weekdays. We can’t visit tourist attractions as we’d normally do on weekends though, so we stay home even more… playing post apo games. After all, we need to be prepared for everything, right?
Local people look at us a bit suspicious now. It’s a common knowledge that those who travel spread the virus the most. We actually don’t mind that. Before, we were often stopped by locals and asked to buy something… now nobody bothers us. Kinda paradise! Plus when it’s all over we will be able to take some amazing pictures of those tourist attractions without huge crowds that normally are there! Always look at the bright side of life!