Only Takes One

In New Zealand it only takes ONE case of Covid-19 in the community (as opposed to a quarantine facility) to send us all straight into Level 4 Lockdown. All cases bar one that’ve turned up in quarantine since June have been the Delta variant so today’s Covid case is being treated as though it’s Delta. So from midnight tonight we’re all at Level 4 which is our highest level. For most of us this is provisionally for 3 days but 7 days for Auckland and Coromandel.

The case is a 58yo unvaccinated man from Devonport in Auckland who’d travelled to Coromandel with his fully vaccinated wife. They’d visited a number of hospitality venues including a particular bar for two evenings where there were approx 70-80 people in the bar both evenings. He’d been careful to scan-in to places he visited so that’s a big help.

Alert Level 4 means we stay home and that includes children, so no school. No cafes or takeaways. If you’re curious about the restrictions here’s the official outline: Alert Level 4 | Unite against Covid-19

NZers are very aware of the Delta variant getting the upper hand in NSW, Australia despite them having the best contact tracing in Australasia. I’d expect the majority of our population will be supportive of going “hard and fast” to try and stamp it out. The worry right now is that there’s no obvious connection between the infected man and our quarantine facilities so where did he pick it up?

PS. this man’s apparently done all the right things and there’s no inference of blame in any way. In NZ bookings for vaccines in his (and my) age group have only opened very recently e.g. I’ve only had my first shot. It’s taken a long time for NZ to get the Pfizer vaccine deliveries.


Black Gully Reserve, Tapanui, West Otago, New Zealand. 23 May 2021.

Text and photo by Liz; Exploring Colour (2021)

21 thoughts on “Only Takes One

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  1. So sorry to learn you guys have to endure a lockdown, but all Kiwis should take pride in the way their country has dealt with the pandemic. You guys have done a phenomenal job, and here in the UK (another island nation, where it should be possible to keep the virus at bay!) we look on in awe at what you’ve achieved.

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    1. Oh thanks Mr Platypus! I gotta admit we do take pride in how we’ve pulled together to face the challenge, I mean there’s idiots overseas who arrogantly assert we’re ‘sheeple’, under the Nazi jackboot, and all sorts of crazy nonsense. Not that we care about their opinion, we’ve seen what happened in NSW and don’t want the same thing here. I believe the NZ count has already gone up to 10 in the community and we expect it’ll go much higher yet before we hopefully turn it around. You take care too Mr P.

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      1. “Idiots overseas” sums it up nicely. Yesterday our government reported 26,852 new cases and 170 deaths here, yet most people are acting like it’s all over, like the virus has been defeated and we’ve won. Life’s nearly back to how it used be, but not of course for the 131,149 people who’ve already died from Covid in the UK. You can’t begin to imagine how much I wish I was in NZ right now!

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        1. That’s horrific and I heartily wish you were here too! I’m so sad for all this suffering, frustrated that a good deal of it could’ve been avoided. As it is, you’ll need to stay very vigilent. Best wishes Mr P.

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  2. 600,000+ dead here and still many will not cooperate. Hurrah for New Zealanders. I am sure there are a few grumbling but the commitment is remarkable. Hope it is nipped in the bud and things open up again quickly, Liz. Take care.

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    1. As of last night, the comments I saw on twitter were overwhelmingly positive and supportive of taking a ‘hard and fast’ approach. No doubt whiners will surface and tbh some folks are terribly inconvenienced by this (I read a tweet where the person was supposed to move house on Fri and now that can’t happen) so I have genuine compassion for situations like that at very short notice. While people sympathised with this person, they also reinforced that the lockdown is necessary.

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        1. There’s a reason though for “seems to do things more efficiently” in this instance. We’ve very close links with Australia and everyone here is well aware of what happened in NSW, Australia because they didn’t treat their first cases with alacrity. Our PM therefore knew she’d have wide support for locking down like she did – which was draconian even by our standards. I’m sad for NSW but thankful their experience guided our response to Delta. Cooperation is a big thing! As an aside I think Delta may be 3x more infectious than the first Covid (rather than the 2x I said to you initiallly). Anyway, take care and stay safe.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. I hope that your lockdown only needs to last a little while before things can go back to normal. I’m impressed by your government’s sensible response – surely the best way to keep the upper hand with Covid. It is worrying if there’s no obvious answer to how the man picked it up though…hope they find the source.

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    1. Yes I hope they find the source. There’s now four more cases, all linked to the first case. This is a wakeup call for NZ! ~not surprising to us though, we knew it was only a matter of time 😦

      Liked by 1 person

        1. They’ve done the genomic sequencing and it’s the same strain as in NSW, Australia. At least we know what we’re dealing with and that the initial caution is totally warranted. We’re up to 10 people now and the numbers will keep on rising as more people show symptoms. So we just hunker down now until it hopefully peters out 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Bravo, Liz, for NZ’s response to contain the virus. You know that’s not what we are doing here with dire consequences. I was pleased to read this morning that many local school districts are defying our governor and mandating masks, although it is likely too late.
    I hope your three days pass without incident and you’re back to going about your business.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s good to hear of school districts that are willing to defy the nay-sayers and put human health first. Kudos to them. Woken up to hear we now have 4 more Covid cases, all are linked to the first case.

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