Our story about what it’s like living in Italy amid Shelter in Place (aka lockdown) & quarantine conditions, due to the COVID-19 coronavirus.
We are Rick & Andrea, 2 Canadians currently living in Italy amid this quarantine and lockdown condition and tell you all about what it’s like for us.
Background on the Covid-19 Coronavirus Emergency in Italy
On March 7, 2020, the Italian PM issued a lockdown decree, essentially forcing 16+ Million citizens into a forced quarantine AKA Shelter in Place. Then, on March 10, 2020, the PM extended the lockdown to everyone in the country and created further restrictions on movement. Notably, Italy has become the first country in the world to introduce full lockdown and quarantine conditions.
Our story talks about what it’s like living quarantined or locked-down due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus. Indeed, some folks call it Shelter in Place. Hopefully, you will find this story valuable and share it throughout social media. We promise to try and not make it too gloomy. Also, we will be sure to point out the surprises as well.
Indeed, this is our live developing story, so be sure to check back often for updates! And of course, please feel free to share this on social media, and please, do leave comments below!
Frequently Asked Questions / FAQ
1. Is Lockdown the best answer to fighting covid19?
Answer: We believe so. The more we stay inside, the more, we believe, we will stop the spread of the covid19 coronavirus. Hopefully, a cure will come out sooner than later. And then, we can look forward to a vaccine to prevent this from popping up again in the future.
2. If you are quarantined can covid19 enter your house via airflow?
Answer: As far as we know, the Covid-19 Coronavirus does not enter your house through airflow. But, I am not an epidemiologist. Best to get these answers from the WHO or CDC. Indeed, the CDC wrote a good article about it here.
3. What is happening to Italy’s economy due to coronavirus
Answer: The lockdown has pretty halted much of Italy’s economy, for now. The key is that we must stay inside for the covid-19 coronavirus to run its course here in Italy before life gets back to normal. And the more we comply, the faster life will get back to normal.
4. Whats quarantine like in Italy?
Answer: The first few days, being under lockdown quarantine in Italy was difficult. But, over time, we got used to living shelter in place and are happy to share what it’s like doing so. We hope you’ll like our developing journal, day by day.
5. What has the Italian government done for COVID 19?
Answer: We feel the government of Italy is doing as best of a job they can to fight the COVID-19 coronavirus. For example, the government is enlisting help from a team of experts, namely physicians from all over the world.
6. What is open in Italy during quarantine?
Answer: Not a whole lot. Food & tobacco stores, pharmacies, and self serve gas stations come to mind.
7. Is Italy still on lockdown due to COVID 19
Answer: Italy began its lockdown on March 8, 2020 and as of April 9, 2020 it is still locked down.
8. Are we allowed to buy garden plants in Italy during COVID 19
Answer: Today is April 9, 2020. Garden plants will be hard to find. The major food store, Esselunga in our town sells Garden Plants, but the stock is very limited.
9. How long will Italy be quarantined
Answer: As of April 9, 2020, we are expecting some relaxing of the rules on Monday. Having said that, we don’t expect life to get back to normal for another month or so.
10. How long is Italy on shelter in due to COVID 19
Answer: Italy has a shelter in place order due to COVID 19 since March 8, 2020. Indeed, this means quarantine and lockdown for everyone in Italy until further notice.
11. Is italy still under quarantine april 2020?
Answer: I’m afraid so, Italy is indeed still under quarantine in April 2020. If everything goes well, we expect Italy will release the shelter in place, lockdown and quarantine measure on May 3, 2020. We will be discussing the reopening in our new series, Reopening Italy.
Final Entry: Sunday May 3, 2020 – End of Phase 1 Quarantine in Italy
Friends, today is our final entry in the Locked Down in Italy series. With 57 Entries and even more videos, the time has finally come to enter into phase two. Tomorrow, we are excited to be starting a new series entitled “Reopening Italy”. Indeed, that sounds a lot more uplifting than being locked away in your home due to the COVID-19 coronavirus, whether you’re reading this from Italy or anywhere else in the world.
On an aside note, I was listing to radio from all over the world while sitting out in the sun. I was blown away by the fact every radio station spoke about the same thing: The reopening of their country. Certainly, this will be a topic spoken about for the next few months. Hopefully, things go in the right direction. We’ve come a long way since the days of Rick eating Gelato, way back in early March. Now it’s time that life slowly comes back to normal. We sincerely thank you all for reading about what it’s like living shelter in place, here in Italy, for us, these past few months.
Saturday, May 2, 2020 – Just a few more days before liberation
Today, we changed it up a little. We decided to talk a little about what authentic Italian food is. And, in the end, a little about the COVID-19 coronavirus. And after 2 complete failures recording, #3 was the charm. Yes folks, new technology always comes with a learning curve. Best to learn, then test, rather than going right out into production.
Friday, May 1 2020
The future of travel after COVID-19 will never be the same. In this video, we discuss where we think we’ll be traveling over the next few months. Spoiler alert: it’s not that bad!
Thursday, April 30 2020
Wednesday, April 29, 2020 – Day 53 Under Lockdown in Italy
In today’s video, we chose to change things up a little and spoke about ourselves, and our story. We hope you like it.
Tuesday, April 28, 2020
Not much new today. Just working away. May 4 is coming soon and residents here in Italy are looking forward to being able to go outdoors again. Indeed, Day 58 will be a nice day. It will also mark the final daily entry in the “Living in Italy under Lockdown and Quarantine”. Our focus will shift back to creating content about travel, and look forward to creating more movies!
Monday, April 27, 2020
Phase 2 – Reopening Italy as reported by the BBC
On Sunday April 25, Italy’s Prime Minster Mr Conte explained how Italy would begin its “Phase Two” of the lockdown: The reopening of Italy.
The “Phase 2” new rules include:
- Residents will be allowed to travel within their own regions – but not to other regions
- Funerals can start again, but only with up to 15 people in attendance, and ideally to be carried on out outdoors
- Residents can play sports, not only in the vicinity of their homes but in wider areas (Social distancing applies)
- Bars and restaurants will reopen, but only for take-out. Note: Restaurants can already do delivery. Regardless, the food must be eaten either at home or somewhere else, like a workplace
- Beauty salons, spas, hairdressers, barbers, bars and restaurants are expected to resume service from June 1, 2020
- All remaining retail shops, museums, and libraries to be opened on May 18.
This is what we know so far. The next few weeks will be interesting.
Sunday, April 26, 2020 – Day 50 Living Under Lockdown and Quarantine in Italy
Sunday funday, eh? Indeed, the sun is shining and life is good here in Italy. We are all looking forward to May 4, 2020 when we can go for a walk again. We didn’t hear much yesterday, but, it could be that we didn’t listen to the news, ha ha!
A couple nice charts for you today. Active cases (commonly referred to the “curve”) and New Cases. As you can see, we’re definitely going in the right direction.
COVID-19 Coronavirus Curve as of April 26, 2020
And these are the daily new cases (Also important)
As you can see, we’re going in the right direction.
Saturday, April 25, 2020 – Liberation Day in Italy
Today is officially the 8th week that Andrea and I have been living under lockdown and quarantine conditions here in Italy. It’s been a long time, but, there’s only a little more than a week left to go. Indeed, May 4, 2020 for me will be remembered as my own liberation day. The Italian government, on May 4, 2020 is expected to move in to it’s Phase 2 of lockdown. Indeed, its expected that it will be significantly relaxed. Liberties will be returned, at least a little.
Some of the highlights (Expected, but not yet approved)
First, on April 27, 2020 – Most industries can reopen
Second, on May 4, 2020 – People can move around
Third, on May 11, 2020 – Some stores reopen (i.e. small shops, clothing etc)
And finally, May 18, 2020 – Reopening of restaurants and coffee bars.
Since the begging, this has been a fluid situation. So, it remains to be seen what actually ends up happening. Indeed, I won’t be writing about it until week 9. Until then, please enjoy our latest video!
April 24, 2020 – End of week 7, living under lockdown and Quarantine in Italy
Today marks the end of week 7 living in Italy amid lockdown and quarantine regulations. Thankfully, the curve of the active cases is in decline. The means, for the last few days, there are fewer active COVID-19 coronavirus cases here in Italy. Also encouraging is that only 4% of tests are getting a positive result. Putting it into perspective, two months ago, 50 out of 100 people tested were positive. Today, it’s only 4 out of 100. Lockdown is certainly helping people here in Italy. Additionally, businesses are starting to open again. For example, today, Andrea went to buy some plants for our garden. Having said that, we’re still not allowed to go for walks, to visit anyone but the doctor. There are very strict regulations against it. Certainly, we are looking forward to the restrictions being eased, likely on schedule May 3.
April 23, 2020 – Will the COVID-19 Pandemic Cause another 2008 Style Recession?
Certainly, another 2008 style recession was not something I was expecting to be writing about. But, where are we? The entire world (or nearly) is locked down, at home. Many are furloughed and others collecting some form of assistance. And you would be right to at least be concerned. These are our thoughts on it.
April 22, 2020 – Day 46: The Curve has Flattened
Great news. Two days in a row, we have a flattened curve. This is great news regarding the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. Hopefully, things will continue in the same direction.
April 21, 2020 – Day 45 Living Shelter at Home in Italy due to COVID-19
The curve has flattened! Indeed, for the first time since the lockdown began, the number of net new cases actually diminished from one day to the other. In other words, fewer people are sick with COVID-19 coronavirus today then there were yesterday. To be sure, it couldn’t have been done without everyone just staying home. On a positive note, we are hearing much about the same from our friends in New York, and even as far away as Malaysia. This is very good news.
Thinking of Malaysia, today, we decided to talk a little about our trip to Asia. Sure, it was a couple years ago, but nonetheless, it’s a vivid memory that we’d love to revisit once this lockdown and quarantine is over and done with in Italy. Speaking of which, there’s still no updates regarding the “final day” of lockdown. My feeling is that so far, nothing will change.
April 20, 2020
Today, we decided to look at how businesses are changing. For example, Andrea isn’t playing Bridge the same was as he used to. Restaurants are innovating, and even funeral services are changing. It’s really an interesting time. Here in Italy, it was considered a hobby if one worked from home. Now, working from home is smart! For me, I’ve worked from home most of my adult life, so it’s business as usual. I guess things happen a little slower in Italy. Better late than never, right?
April 19, 2020 – Day 43 Living Shelter in Place here in Italy due to COVID-19
Forty-three days have passed by quickly. For sure, when you have the stuff to do, a COVID-19 Coronavirus staycation isn’t all that bad. Today is a typical Sunday for us. We are busy working away, producing videos, staying in touch with new friends, and old. Also, not to forget lots of families. In the week ahead, we are expecting announcements about how the reopening of Italy will happen. Indeed, businesses are desperate to get going again. For sure, I don’t blame them. I have a feeling the people who are under lockdown in places like New York and San Francisco can’t wait to get back to work either. San Francisco became the first US city with a shelter in place order. New York went into lockdown due to COVID-19 on March 22, 2020 – or 12 days after Italy.
April 18, 2020 – Beginning of Week 7
Today is Saturday, April 18, 2020 – Officially day 42 being locked down and quarantined here in Italy. Yikes! Time passes quickly when you have something to do. We keep saying, to make this “staycation” more comfortable, you need to have something to do. For example, learn something new, work on something (like youtube videos). Whatever it is, you just have to keep busy!
Today, I’ve been working on our race to 1000 Youtube subscribers! At this time, we’re at 158 – so we have 842 to go. With your help, we can knock it out of the park. So with that, go ahead and watch our video, and if you like it, please subscribe!
April 17, 2020 – Getting Tested in Italy for COVID-19 Coronavirus
So this morning, Andrea and I woke up bright and early. Finally, private testing in our town (And I believe, the country) has begun. I’ve heard the raw cost of the test is 25 € or about USD$28 / CAD$40. Our test cost 64€. But, we were confirmed to be the first in our city to have been given the test! You might curious about the test. Indeed, the COVID-19 Coronavirus test we got is supposed to tell us if we HAVE the virus, OR if we HAD the virus in the past. For me, I’m more interested in knowing if I had the virus in the past. Why? Because I believe that if I have the antibodies, then I’ll have immunity and will be granted leniency for moving around… at least I’ll be the first of the bunch. Admittedly, freedom is incredibly important to be.
Otherwise, the end of week 6 is near. Andrea and I are looking forward to spending a good portion of time in the garden, getting some sun, and producing more videos. Speaking of which, we emailed you all yesterday, asking for your help and subscribing to our youtube channel. And many of you responded. Thanks!!! It really means the world to us.
April 16, 2020
Today is Day 40, being locked down and Quarantined here in Italy. Fun fact, the word quarantine comes from the Italian word “quarantena”. The historical use of the word dates back to the 14th century, when the Venetians required ships to be anchored at sea for 40 days before docking. These efforts were done to prevent the spread of the plague.
In today’s video, we discuss the future of travel, and some of our favourite tips from the 110 Travel tips article. Let us know what you think!
April 15, 2020
Good Morning folks! First, a little good news. Yesterday had the fewest new COVID-19 cases in Italy, in over a month, since March 13, 2020. Indeed, this is very good news. Admittedly, I think it’s the direction the government wants to see in order to open businesses once again. Sure, some businesses have already begun to open, but very slowly. And, any business that is customer-facing must adhere to strict social distancing standards.
The COVID-19 Coronavirus Test
Interestingly, today is the first day that anyone in Italy can get a COVID-19 test. Here, it costs 60 euros and our appointment is set for Friday morning. Now, you might be wondering why we’d want to get a COVID-19 coronavirus test in Italy. Well, it’s simple. First, the test tells you if you have it. Second, the test also tells you if you had it in the past. I’m more interested in knowing if I had it, in the past.
I believe that the government will be allowing more freedom to those who have already had the virus, before the others. And, if you’ve been following our story, you’ll know that we believe there’s a high probability that we were already infected, despite having little to no symptoms. My thought is that should the Italian government require that folks have some form of certification that they were positive, and now cured, in order to go out, then I might as well get it ASAP. Because as soon as the Italian government asks for this, there will be a rush of 60M people who will all want the test at the same time. It can’t hurt to be head of the curve 🙂
Cruise Ship News
It’s looking more and more like the cruise ship season of 2020 will have been cut in half, if not more. Sure, ships have been largely “in place” since the beginning of March, however, cruise companies are canceling many cruises through the end of July. Indeed, this is a sad situation for the travel industry as there are many, many other industries who rely on the ships. Let’s hope for the best.
April 14, 2020
Today, we take a look at the current COVID-19 coronavirus situation here in Italy. To be sure, it’s not terrible. But, there are still concerns that the virus is taking longer to go away than expected.
Otherwise, it’s a pretty usual day. Not much to report, other than we’re working to improve our website where ever possible. We hope you like it!
April 13, 2020
Good Morning Everyone, its Easter Monday and Day 37, living Shelter in Place here in Italy due to the nasty COVID-19 Coronavirus. The weekend flew by faster than a speeding bullet. As we’ve been saying all along, if you are locked down and quarantined in your country, Andrea and I think its best to fill your day with projects about 1-2 hours long. Preplan them. Here is our video of the day.
As for us, we will be spending this week working on our website. In particular, we are looking at streamlining its look, making it simpler and faster. If there is something you like/don’t like about it, do let us know. Stay safe, and stay HOME everyone!
April 12, 2020
Happy Easter everyone! We certainly hope the easter bunny kicks the coronvirus’ butt! Ha!
Weekend Hair Cuts
Yesterday was an interesting day. We both got hair cuts (Yes, Andrea’s looks a lot better). One thing we’ve learned being locked down and quarantined here in Italy is that life goes on. And when we need to learn something, its important that we do so without fear. Sure, we might make mistakes, but, one never learns without making mistakes along the way!
Andrea Makes Tiramisu – As Promised
As promised, Andrea made (authentic) Tiramisu and we put together another Quarantine Cooking video for you all. You’re welcome to watch it here. Indeed, it was fun to make!
Jeremy M. Frank
On a more fun note, our friend Jeremy M. Frank reached out to us about playing a little part for our morning videos. Jeremy is the vocal coach and assistant conductor with the LA Opera. We interviewed him, and then Jeremy played for us! Unfortunately, Skype didn’t do a great job of recording our interview, so don’t pay attention to the right side of the interview. At least, however, it recorded Jeremy well. Note to self: If we want to interview someone else in the future, definitely use something else!
April 11, 2020
Welcome to week 6. We hope you’re liking this series about what it’s like living shelter in place, amid lockdown and quarantine directives. Fun times. It looks like this shelter in place measure will be extended through May. Unfortunately, the number of covid-19 coronavirus cases here in Italy just isn’t coming down as fast as the government would want. On a brighter note, one of our closest friends (a family doctor) has said that things are looking better in her practice. So we shall see.
In other news, Andrea and I both got haircuts today. His looks great, I think. Unfortunately, my own seems a little short around the ears. To be sure, this is my own fault. 3mm cut works great for Andrea, but not so much for me. 6mm for future reference!
Also, in the afternoon, Andrea put together his Italian Tiramisu recipe for Quarantine cooking. Indeed, it’s an authentic recipe. We will have it tonight for dinner, and will link to the video in tomorrow’s entry.
April 10, 2020
Good morning everyone! I hope you all liked yesterday’s video. Today’s is certainly fun as well. Indeed, we are making the most of it, and happy to share what it’s like living shelter in place, under lockdown and quarantine here in Modena, Italy.
It seems the government will be extending our lockdown until May 4, 2020. Unfortunately, we’ve had a setback. Just like the tide, there’s going to be ebbs and flows. And right now, our new cases is not going in the right direction. More on that as soon as I have a word.
In today’s video, we talk about where we live. Specifically, in Modena. We talk about Ferrari, food, etc. It was a lot of fun!
April 9, 2020 – Day 33 What It’s Like Living in Italy under Lockdown and Quarantine
We felt like having a little fun today. Indeed, today we are thinking of the cruise ship deck parties! Think of it, hundreds of slightly inebriated folks in the Mediterranean singing and dancing with not a worry in the world.
Holland America & Crystal are doing cooking demonstrations:
Also, Carnival (while already published) has a fun video of being on a cruise:
Sure, it’s not the same. But, its the best it’s going to get, for now. Indeed, cruise ships will be running again soon. And when they do, and when we’re allowed out again, we’ll be sailing in no time!
Our photo contest is still on please submit your best travel photos at: [email protected]
April 8, 2020 – Day 32 Under Lockdown in Italy
You might be wondering why today’s entry is called “The birds and the bees”. Well, it all has to do with my mother. If you’re just tuning in, I’ve been ranting about the birds and wasps who decided to take over our patio furniture. Indeed, its been a little bit of a war and I know it makes for interesting drama. Yesterday, I was face timing with her, and she asked about the birds and the bees. You’ll have to watch the video below to hear what happened 🙂
Otherwise, it’s business as usual here. I haven’t said that in a while. We published our “110 Travel Tips After the Coronavirus” and so far, it’s been a hit. If you like it, let me know in a comment below.
April 7, 2020
Feeling Optimistic RE: COVID-19 Coronavirus in Italy
Good Morning Friends. Today is Day 31 of our “what it’s like” living in Italy, under lockdown and quarantine series. Optimism is certainly in the air today. As you can see in the graphic below, the daily new cases here in Italy have reduced greatly. Perhaps it’s because of less testing, but also, ICU beds are freeing up, and 1000’s are cured every day. Interestingly, the local government here in Italy will be testing everyone in the country to see who has immunity (antibodies) and who doesn’t. This will be good information once the vaccine is ready.
On a Lighter Note
We’ve had lots of folks suggest different deserts to make on future videos. Perhaps the “Quarantine Cooking” channel will take off. So far, in the pipeline, our favorite requests are: Tiramisu, Canoli, and Amatriciana sauce. These are all easy to make and we’ll be happy to record them.
Furthermore, look out for more information about “how we do it”, particularly from the financial side. Indeed, we get asked a lot, how is it that we travel so much. Our motto here is “Live the Travel Addicts Life”, and we’ll certainly be working on it in the future.
We love your comments. Thanks so much! Feel free to keep them coming.
April 6, 2020
Day 30, What It’s Like Living In Italy, Shelter In Place
Today is day 30 of the lockdown in Italy due to the Covid-19 coronavirus. Last night it seemed some good news came out. Admittedly, it seems that we reached a turning point. For example, the number of deaths have dramatically decreased, the number of people in ICU decreased. Moreover, and what is most important, the percentage of people that are tested positive has declined by almost half. In fact, at the peak, almost 50% of people that were tested turned out positive while now, less than 13% of people tested, are actually positive. This is great news!
Lasana Making Day
Yesterday we cooked assembled our lasagna and we uploaded the video of the all process. The Lasagna turned out fantastic and it was today’s lunch.
We received some comments on YouTube asking to make more cooking videos, so we are thinking about making a tiramisu next time. What do you think? Does it sound like a video you would be interested in? Let us know in the comment below.
Today’s Video: Turning Point
April 5, 2020
Day 29, What it’s like living In Italy under lockdown, Shelter In Place
Here we are. Day 29 of our what it’s like, living in Italy series. Yesterday was packed full of activities, and the sun was shining. Even so, we stayed in most of the day working on projects. We got our Bolognese Sauce completed, and today, we’ll be working on the Lasanga. The Bolognese video has been uploaded to youtube and you can check it out here:
In Other News
Thanks to Joan and Deb for continuing to watch us on the screen! And to everyone else for that matter!
Also, New COVID-19 Coronavirus Cases went up a little here in Italy but, for the first time, ICU patients declined! This is good news!
Last, a local radio station here in Italy polled its audience and asked: “What’s the biggest thing you miss, living shelter in place, under lockdown and quarantine?” We would have answered our friends & family. But, what they said will surprise you! Check out our daily video for the answer!
April 4, 2020
Hello Friends! Welcome to week 5 of our what it’s like, Living In Italy, under lockdown and quarantine. Indeed, our story is getting lots of attention. From the start, Andrea and I wanted to use this as a way to document what it’s like for us here in Italy, living shelter in place.
Admittedly, if you’ve followed us from the beginning, when I was eating that wonderful gelator back on March 9, you’ll see that while there have been some big changes, life is what you make of it. For example, folks often acknowledge that we seem to be in good spirits. Certainly, it’s not by accident! Our day is planned out with activities, from morning until evening. This way, the day passes by super fast.
Quarantine Cocktails Hour
Yesterday, we hosted Quarantine Cocktails hour. It was fun chatting with the Travel Addicts who have been watching us for some time. And, who doesn’t like a glass of wine?
Glimmer Of Hope
Regarding new cases, it seems they are continuing to improve, however, not at the clip we’d like. As you can see, in terms of “flattening the curve”, we appear to have passed that point and are in decline. However, until the new cases get down into the double digits, I think we’ll be making more and more of these entries. Admittedly, my guess at this point is that we’ll be doing this until around May 4th, 2020. That’s my date. We will see. And, I promise, I won’t edit the date.
And Here is our Video Of the Day! We had a little fun with it. If you liked it, please leave a comment!
April 3, 2020 – Day 27 living In Italy Under Lockdown
Good Morning Friends. Wow, I have to say that time is passing by quickly and we’re thrilled to be able to share what it’s like for us living shelter in place, here in Italy. Indeed, this is Day 27 of living shelter in place, locked down and quarantined in Italy due to the rechid Covid-19 Coronavirus. To be sure, our day is fully planned out from start to finish. Admittedly, Andrea and I were just saying that we haven’t worked so much in more than 10 years! So, maybe this quarantine and lockdown experience isn’t so bad after all. Naturally, however, we are incredibly sympathetic to those who have temporarily lost their jobs. Surely, they will come back after this emergency is over and done with.
New Idea to Fill Your Day
While I was poking around on Linked in yesterday, I found that lots of schools are offering free classes online. This made me think, what if I googled “Free University Classes Online”. Go ahead and try. You’ll be surprised. Even Harvard University is offering courses online, free!
To be sure, I think learning something while sheltering is a great way to fill up some time in the day.
New Method For Publishing Our Living Lockdown and Quarantined in Italy Series
Moving forward, we are changing the way the videos will be displayed on our site. This is because we have little control over how youtube publishes the feature image. We hope you prefer this way. Feel free to click the photo to launch the video!
April 2, 2020
Good afternoon everyone. Apologies for the late entry as we’ve been literally swamped with support for our new article, “100 Travel Tips after the Coronavirus”. No lie, I probably had 250 real emails in just 24 hours. That’s a good thing! Indeed, it keeps us busy. If you have a great travel tip to add, email me. I’ll get it included and will publish your name, photo, social media and website links. Who doesn’t like free publicity?
I hope you will join us for Quarantine Cocktail hour tomorrow, at 10 am PDT or 1 pm EDT on Zoom. The Meeting room ID is: 721 899 2542
In other news, Rogers Media has reached out to us for an in-depth podcast interview that will be played across Canada on their radio stations. Apparently, we are newsworthy enough as 2 Canadians currently living in Italy, living shelter in place under lockdown and quarantine orders.
Plans For The Weekend
Watch out for Quarantine Cooking with Rick and Andrea, this weekend on our website. We will be making lasagna from scratch. To be sure, we’ll be putting the entire recipe together in an easy to understand video. Also, we will be including all the how-to’s for making our Bolognese sauce and Bechamel and will record the assembly as well.
In today’s video, we talk about the latest updates, how we spent our day yesterday, and touch on healthy eating. Also, we made some improvements to it. Can you spot the differences? If so, let us know below.
April 1, 2020 – Day 25 Under Lockdown in Italy
If someone would tell me that for a period of 4-8 weeks, I would have to live shelter in place, under lockdown and quarantine measures, Italy or elsewhere, I would have said you were crazy. Indeed, today is April fools. But, there’s nothing foolish going on. Well, nothing other than our funny t-shirts perhaps. So here’s our continuing story about what it’s like living shelter in place, in Italy, under lockdown and quarantine.
Todays New COVID-19 Coronavirus Graph for Italy Appears Promising
As you can see, it appears we are going in the right direction. Indeed, lockdown started on March 9, 2020. And, if you watch our videos from Day 1, you’ll see that we all (as a society) wasted about a week, learning how to live locked down and quarantined. So, I’d say if you add 7 days for learning, and another 14 days for the incubation period and that brings us to March 30. And, if you look at the chart, March 30 was gamechanger. As you can see, the numbers don’t lie. Indeed, the quarantine and lockdown measures due to the covid-19 coronavirus appear to work here in Italy.
A Light At The End Of The Tunnel
The government of Italy, today, announced that on April 14, things will start coming back to normal. The draconian lockdown and quarantine decree will be eased. We have no idea when. But in effect, now we have another 14 or so, more days. If things continue as they have, the new cases should continue to drop significantly. Then, we can start thinking of traveling beyond our backyard, once again.
In Other News
You may have noticed we have a new domain name. Indeed, the old one was okay, but, the “life” seems to Jive better with our motto “Live The Travel Addicts Life”. We hope you like it. In the meantime, here is our latest video.
March 31, 2020 – Day 24 In Italy Living Shelter In Place
Good morning friends! Today is Day 24 living Shelter in place in Italy. Actually, time is passing by nice and quick these days. Also, it seems that living shelter in place, under lockdown and quarantine orders here in Italy. We got some good news! Net new cases of Covid-19 Coronavirus in Italy have drastically reduced for the first time since the lockdown and quarantine order was given. Certainly, We look forward to some relaxed measures around Easter.
In today’s video, we outline the most important things we think will help you get through a long term quarantine or lockdown in your home. In particular, come up with a number of projects you might like to accomplish. Indeed, fit them into a daily plan, and stick to it like a routine. To be sure, each of the projects should take 1-2 hours each.
Our Daily Schedule / Plan
- Learn something new, or take an online course that will last 4-6 weeks
- Pick a project around the house to work on (cleaning the closet, floor, & fridge and freezer etc)
- Do a financial checkup. Eg. Track all your expenses for the last month
- Learn to cook healthier, and eat healthier
- Call/message someone you haven’t spoken too in a long while
- Perform a little physical activity that you can manage
- Write a story
- Plan activities (like Date night, formal night, dance-off etc)
- And finally, find something new to watch.
You get the idea. If each of these took 1 hour of your time, then add in meals, your day will pass by quickly.
If you’re currently living at home, what are you doing to pass the time?
March 30, 2020 – Day 23 Living under Quarantine in Italy
Here we are, another Monday. This is the 6th week since the Covid-19 coronavirus emergency hammered Italy. Also, we are right into week 4 now of living shelter in place, under lockdown and quarantine orders, here in Modena Italy.
A New Week, And A New Name
Over the weekend, we realized that Travel Addicts as a group has a narrow focus on sharing travel related stories and photos. Since everyone is locked away in there home, and considering there’s a global recession coming (if we’re not already in it), our thought is to expand the reach a little. As a result, we changed our name to “Travel Addicts Life”, a blog for people who want to live the life of a Travel Addict. While sharing stories and photos about travel will continue to be a primary focus, we will look in the coming weeks to expand. For example, we’ve already started working on Quarantine Cooking, a segment devoted to healthy and inexpensive cooking at home.
Later on, we will touch a little on articles related to home finance. Specifically, we’ll look at ways you can save money at home and build a monthly budget surplus. Also, we’ll look at ways you can save money traveling, so that you can either travel more. Indeed, the Covid-19 coronavirus has made us all change a little, and not just in Italy. We hope you will embrace this little change as well.
March 29, 2020 – Sunday Funday
Learning A New Language While Living Shelter In Place
In Italy, the most common phrases being said today is “Andrà Tutto Bene”, meaning, “Everything Will be ok”. Indeed, learning a new language while living shelter in place, under quarantine and lockdown orders here in Italy, is a great way to pass the time.
Do you have any phrases you’d like to share with us in your own language? If so, please feel free to send them our way and we’ll include them in a later story.
Hanlé from South Africa sent this beautiful clip to us, giving us a few words in Afrikaans. Thanks, Hanlé!
A Little Walk Around Our Building
This morning was another nice day here in northern Italy. So, we used the time to video another episode of Quarantine Cooking (We made Croque Monsieur) and go for a walk around the building. A few days ago, we showed you the inside of our home. Now, we give you a little tour of our complex, but from outside. Indeed, we are quite fortunate to be able to walk around. Not everyone has this same luxury at the moment.
March 28, 2020 – Day 21 of Lockdown in Italy
Start of Week 4 – Living Shelter in Place under Quarantine and Lockdown Orders in Italy
So today is day 21. A full 3 weeks have now passed us here in Italy, since the quarantine and lockdown orders were announced March 7, 2020. Indeed, the experience thus far has been both difficult and emotional, but, we continue to make the best of the situation. Also, we know that we have it much better than others. For example, in our complex, we can walk around the parking lot and the building. Today, for example, we walked around our parking lot once again. Yet, friends up the street do not have such luxury. I’ll never look at our parking lot the same away again!
Quarantine Cocktails – Video Hour!
Yesterday was the first time we hosted the quarantine cocktail hour on Zoom. Indeed, it was a lot of fun! New friends from both California and Italy joined, along with some others back in British Columbia. Admittedly, we spoke a lot about the virus, and how it was affecting each other. But also, I think we are starting something good.
To be sure, we will be continuing Quarantine Cocktails. See you next Friday, April 3, 2020, at 7 PM Italy time, 10 AM PDT or 1 PM EDT. To join, just click here: https://us04web.zoom.us/j/7218992542 or if you already use Zoom, join the meeting ID: 721 899 2542.
Today, we felt like cooking something that reminded us of Canada. So, we made Saturday brunch. Andrea cooked the bacon, I cooked the eggs, and we shared the whole experience on video. We hope you like it! Please feel free to send us photos of what you’ve been making at home!
March 27, 2020 – Day 20 in Italy Under Lockdown
Folks, the end of week three living shelter in place, under quarantine and locked down orders here in Italy, is about to arrive. Indeed, I think we are about at the halfway point of this absolutely horrible experience, but, we’re keeping positive, as best as we possibly can. As an example, yesterday, Andrea and I hosted a formal night. For sure, we went all out, and put on our suits, and drank some wine. But, we realized that while we were recording for you all, you couldn’t join us.
So, we’ve come up with the answer!
Quarantine Video Conference Friday (Today)
Come join us On Our Travel Addicts Video Conference today!
Meeting Time: Mar 27, 2020 06:00 PM Italy Time / 10AM Pacific (Vancouver/Seattle/LA) or 1PM Eastern (Toronto/New York)
Join Zoom Meeting: https://us04web.zoom.us/j/7218992542
Meeting ID: 721 899 2542
We hope to see you there!
March 26, 2020
Formal Night Fun Night, Quarantine Style
This morning, Andrea and I were supposed to be picking outfits for our cruise that was supposed to happen this weekend. To be sure, living in shelter in place, under lockdown & quarantine orders have put a little damper in our plan. So, when life gives you lemons, we make lemonade!
So this morning, instead of packing our formal wear, we decided to host our very own formal night, quarantine style. For example, we got out our best suits, favorite bowties, and recorded our video at 10 AM! Indeed, it was 6 PM somewhere.
Then, we proceeded to do a walk-through of our home as some of you wanted to see what our home looks like, here in Italy.
Also, we wanted to take a moment to thank you, our readers, and viewers. We’ve made a lot of new friends as a result of this project. Also, when this is all over, we’ll get back to our normal lives, but perhaps with different habits.
March 25, 2020 – Day 18 in Under Lockdown in Italy
Is Shelter In Place and Locked Down Working in Italy?
Hi Everyone! First, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you so much for continuing to read our story. Indeed, being locked down and quarantined here in Italy due to the Covid-19 coronavirus is a trend that is extending throughout the world. While it is spreading significant short term economic challenges, in the end, good things will come of it.
Today is lockdown Day 18 for us here in Italy. Indeed, we’ve had 3 straight days of new case declines. I think this shelter in place order is working, on a national scale. Also, considering it takes 3-6 weeks for folks who are hospitalized to recover, we expect that the recovery numbers will begin to improve over the coming days.
Speaking of which, it’s interesting Canada and the US have not started a national shelter in place order, yet. For others, such as those in India, you are on day 1.
Regardless of where you are in your quarantine process, we recommend using the time to improve our lives. For example, you can call a friend or family member that you haven’t spoken to in a while. To be sure, they will be happy to hear from you as they likely have similar concerns.
Shelter In Place and Become a Better You
Alternatively, consider bettering yourself. For example, I’ve been on a so-called diet since we returned from Antarctica, Jan 24. And now, after just two quick months, I’m down nearly 6kg or 13lbs. Incredible! Admittedly, while I could have done a better job, but, I plan to continue this as long as I can. My weight is not just about wearing smaller clothes, but, anyone who knows me knows that I suffer from a really nasty left knee. Any extra weight on it causes my knee to hurt. Actually, a few years ago, I wasn’t able to walk up one step – it was that bad. So, if the Covid-19 Coronavirus helps my knee out in some small way, I welcome it, albeit grudgingly – thanks Italy!
What are you doing to make yourself a better person? Comment below!
We are looking forward to tomorrow’s video. To be sure, we’re going to do something fun and we hope you get to see it.
Today’s video is currently uploading. I will put it here once its finished.
March 24, 2020 – Thinks Are Looking Up!
Good news! After 17 days of being living under a shelter in place order, or locked down and quarantined here in Italy, we had 2 days of declining new cases of the Covid-19 Coronavirus. While we don’t want to celebrate just yet, we couldn’t help feel a little sigh of relief. And, some say “not a second without a third”, so we are optimistic.
In other news, Andrea and I went for our walk today in the empty parking lot. Admittedly, we could only do 3,000 steps as the Siberian front was as cold as ever. While we didn’t want to go inside, it was the better of the two options. If I’m bored later, perhaps I’ll take out my jacket used for Antarctica. Gosh, when I said that Charlotte Bay felt like another world, I would have ever guessed how correct I was at the time. Sadly, that trip feels like an eternity ago. But yes, this too shall pass.
On the bureaucracy front, and in true Italian fashion, we are now on our 3rd version of the declaration form (aka. affidavit). Now, we must declare specifically where we are coming from, and where we are going. I suppose there were many cases of folks skirting the system. Indeed, being locked down and living shelter in place is unnatural to humans.
March 23, 2020 – Shelter In Place
Brrrrrrr. What happened to the weather? I stepped outside and it felt like January! To be sure, we have a “Siberian front” that is blowing freezing cold through our area. Indeed, it’s not making this shelter in place or lockdown any easier here in Italy. Oh well, I guess I’ll spend a little more time working on the story.
As you can see, our parking lot is rather full. Actually, it looks like an average Sunday morning. I guess many people are working from home today.
Getting a Head Start On The Week While Living Shelter In Place In Italy
Andrea was busy doing housework this morning. Indeed, Sunday Funday got spent mostly in front of the TV. I watched romcoms while Andrea watched a 4 hour Youtube series on aliens and ufo’s, haha! Also, I got some food prep completed for this coming week.
Also, Andrea and I are making the best of our time living under a shelter in place order, quarantined and locked down here in Italy amid the Covid-19 pandemic. For example, we are eating very healthily. Indeed, we are cooking all our own foods and sticking to our diet. We feel that we have an opportunity to improve our health, so, we’re taking advantage of it.
In this morning’s video, we try and have a little fun given the current situation. To be sure, it’s not the end of the world. We will get through this folks!
March 22, 2020
Good Morning folks. Its Sunday morning, and while the sun isn’t shining, we still have our health. Indeed, we have passed 14 days without any symptoms – yay!
Yesterday was a fun day. We spent most of it working on this site and on social media. Also, we got to go for a walk around our building. We walked 5 or 6 laps or 4500 steps. Actually, it gets a little monotonous, but, it could be worse, a lot worse. Then, in the evening, we visited with Andrea’s parents. Indeed, they are very happy when we visit. Finally, Andrea’s parents are accepting the fact that we will no longer be able to visit. At least, certainly not every day.
New Update: Locked Down & Shelter In Place In Italy
In more somber news, new Covid-19 cases continue to rise. Admittedly, local experts have repeated that they expect this week to be the worst, before getting better. It wasn’t long ago that I was excited to see what looked like a stabilizing caseload.
Also, in our video, we stated the government here in Italy has extended our Shelter In Place directive, until April 15, 2020. This is currently incorrect. Seems we got some wrong information. Currently, lockdown is set to end April 3- for now.
Having said that, April 15 would make sense to us. Indeed, this is immediately after the Easter holiday. To be sure, Easter is a really big holiday here in Italy. Actually, its probably the 2nd biggest holiday, after Christmas. So, it kind of makes sense to me that the government doesn’t want families to be getting together and traveling, yet.
We shall see.
How did you all enjoy the Google Arts & Culture site? Go ahead and comment below and let us know where you’d love to visit next, once we’re all able to travel again!
Andrea and I are certainly looking forward to being able to travel again. For example, it would be great to visit Naples, one again.
March 21, 2020 – Week Two Finished
Good morning friends! First, I have to say, I’m a little lazy today. Indeed, showering can wait a little while. I mean, we’re here showing you what it’s like living shelter in place under lockdown. And, with little activity, who cares right? It doesn’t get any more real! Second, we wanted to thank everyone for the kind words and keep up with our videos.
Beware of Fake News
Yes, folks, even I got the wool pulled over my eyes. For example, yesterday, I posted about how nature is already changing. And, I happily displayed a tweet (shown below) about dolphins returning to Venice. To be sure, the dolphin video was filmed in Southern Sardinia, where dolphins are known to swim. Also, what about the swans in Burano? Totally normal. And the crystal clear waters of Venice? Well, they are clear because the boats are not shifting the sand around.
With that, please remember. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is. Do your homework. Get your news from reliable sources (WHO, CDC, your local Government etc). So, if you see something on twitter or facebook that looks amazing, try and confirm it elsewhere.
Keeping Busy During the Covid-19 Lockdown
We went out on social media and asked what you all will be doing locked down this weekend. We got lots of fun answers. Someone even said they expect a baby boom in 9 months’ time. Indeed, Andrea thinks there may be a divorce backlog as well.
Lately, Andrea and I have been experimenting with new recipes. Andrea’s favorite new recipe thus far was his baked macaroni. And mine? Making Gnocco Fritto of course!
Visit a Virtual Museum
In case you run out of ideas, why not check out Google’s Arts & Culture project? Here, you can visit some of the neatest places on earth, from your phone, tablet, or computer. Indeed, this can be a fun distraction if you run out of other things to do.
March 20, 2020 – Day 13
Good morning! The sun is shining, and the radio is still playing our favorite music. Also, we just recorded our latest video. Thank you so much to everyone who has reached out. Indeed, this experience is teaching us that we are all one big family.
Further, it has dawned on us that perhaps this experience is sort of like mother nature’s way of pressing the reset button on the earth. Also, I decided to go out and see if anyone has reported it. Low and behold, there are many articles about the earth having less pollution, in particular in China and Italy due to the new shelter in place (aka lockdown or quarantine) measures due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus. For example, the BBC has reported exactly this.
Plan B: Covid-19 Coronavirus Shelter In Place (Lockdown) Orders In Italy
On March 19, 2020, the Italian government released its latest statistics on the caseload. As I’ve said many times, the most important figure to me, and at this time, is the number of new Covid-19 cases in Italy. Sure, if there were a cure (And there’s lots of testing going on), new cases would be irrelevant, but, until that time comes, I believe we must focus on daily new cases. Sadly, we had 4480 new cases on March 19, up from 2648 the day before. Indeed, this represents a near 70% increase in the daily new cases, after the 5 previous days in the 2400-2900 a day range.
As a result, we understand that stricter measures are likely on the way. To be sure, we need a plan B. The one that would hurt the most is if we were no longer able to visit with Andrea’s parents. As a result, if this new measure comes down, we are ready to move in with them. To be sure, it won’t be easy. But, this will be a temporary sacrifice we’ll have to make, and we will do so happily, even if it means having to give up a little privacy.
March 19, 2020 – Day 12 in Under Lockdown in Italy
Good afternoon everyone. Apologies for the late entry. Indeed, we went to buy some food at the store. We thought that we would beat the line by going early. Unfortunately, we were wrong, as you can see. At last, everyone was standing about 2 meters apart. Surely, that was a good thing.
Unfortunately, at that time, we learned about the latest new shelter in place restriction: only one person can shop at the same time. This time, however, they let me through anyway. The next time, however, I’ll stay home. Also, I should note that we also ordered Andrea’s mum to stay home while we pick up her order. This, my friends, is no easy task. But, this time at least, we won.
Today’s Food Preparations
After we got home, I started preparing lunch, and Saturday’s dinner (Yes, two days in advance). For lunch, I prepared a beautiful fresh herb salad, with balsamic vinegar. As a side, I soft boiled a couple of eggs and warmed up some pork steak. And for dessert, we each had an Orange. For those who calorie count, it was about a 600 kcal lunch. Here’s a picture of the aftermath. Too bad I didn’t get a shot of today’s lunch.
If you’re wondering why we are eating little, it’s just because we gained a little weight last year. As a result, we started our diet once we got home from Antarctica. Indeed, this diet is wonderful. As of today, I’ve lost 5kg, or just over 10lbs. Yay me! Of course, I wouldn’t wish this experience on anyone.
Saturday Nights Dinner
I did, however, get a shot of Saturday night’s dinner: Braised pork roast. I prepared it by adding some amazing olive oil, rosemary from our garden, local garlic, and salt. Then, I put everything in a vacuum bag, and vacuum packed it. Admittedly, I really like to marinate food in this way, as it becomes super flavorful, even after the cooking process. In case you are wondering, the roast is about 1.5kg (uncooked), and I’ll cook it low and slow to around 62C / 145F (Internal temp).
After lunch, I relaxed for a little while and watched some Discovery channel. Indeed, these days, I’ve been watching a lot more TV than I’m used too. But hey, if it’s for the greater good, why not right?
Afternoon Physical Activity After Further Shelter In Place Restrictions
After that, Andrea and I walked around our complex. Since we cannot walk in the park, or pretty much anywhere outside our property, we figured we’d just walk around our complex. And, we weren’t the only ones. Also, we shot some footage of our walk which we will update later. Actually, it kind of felt like walking the deck of a cruise ship. We did 6 laps, which was about 6000 steps. Tomorrow, we will do more.
Fun Distractions During this Covid-19 Coronavirus Emergency – Italy Style!
Tomorrow, we have something fun to look forward too. 3 other groups of friends, and us, will do a Whatsapp video group call. We tried it out yesterday, and it worked like a charm. So, on Friday night, we will get our tripod out, and a bottle of bubbles. For sure, we will open our favorite wine, Rose de Noir. Unfortunately, we are on our last bottle. If anyone wants to send us some, we could perhaps do the same video chat together, with a glass of wine.
Day 12 Video, Quarantined in Italy: New Restrictions
Today’s video was easy to do. We had lots of questions from everyone which made it fun.
I think the most important take away from today is to support your local business during this difficult time. For example, earlier in this experience, we were visiting our local market to buy fresh fruit and vegetables. Unfortunately, now that’s closed – only the large food stores remain. But, we can still order in from restaurants. For example, last week, we ordered pizza from a local, mom and pop shop. It was delicious!
Tomorrow’s video will look at the Covid-19 Coronavirus statistics, after 13 days of lockdown here in Italy. To be sure, there are definitely some pain points still, but there is also much positivity. If you have any questions, please contact us, and we might answer you in our next video!
March 18, 2020 – Day 11 in Under Lockdown in Italy
Good morning everyone! The sun is shining, the radio is still playing music, and life continues. This morning, we recorded our longest video to date. Indeed, the daily videos are becoming easier to complete. Also, this social experiment we started a week and a half ago is one of the highlights of our day. And happily, we seem to be making some waves with this story.
In other news, on our way to Andrea’s parents yesterday, we witnessed something truly odd. The local park was completely empty. Indeed, the Covid-19 Coronavirus emergency is a strange time here in Italy. Sadly, I think it’s a sign that will propagate throughout the world.
Common Questions We’ve Been Getting
Some folks have been asking us:
- What do Italians wish they should have done?
- What is it like living in Italy under quarantine due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus?
- When are we going to be locked inside?
- What is Shelter In Place?
First, on the video, I said there’s really nothing I wish we should have done. Whether we are in Italy or Canada, it doesn’t really matter. This “shelter in place” or “lockdown” is the recommended method to keep this virus at bay.
One Last Party
After thinking about it further, perhaps one last party with all our friends would have been nice. Also, on the evening that the lockdown was announced here in Modena, Andrea and I were out for dinner with some of our closest friends. Not because we knew it was coming, but, it just happened that we were all out together. Perhaps it was luck. But, I wish that we had taken a photo of that evening. Actually, I do have a photo… not of us, but of the chef at the restaurant, and what we ate!
Second, we might be in Italy, but, we are not under Quarantine. To be sure, it’s more like lockdown, or otherwise known as Shelter In Place outside Italy. Indeed, some people are in self-quarantine as they have tested positive. But, those who test positive and are in self-quarantine have no symptoms. Indeed, those without symptoms make up the largest group of “positive” cases.
Third, I really don’t have an answer. I’d say that if you’re living in a big city, the chances are high that at some point soon, you too will face some form of “shelter in place” as it’s called in the US. Indeed, as of today, San Francisco, New York, and Nevada have all enacted some forms of Shelter In Place.
What Is Shelter In Place? Just Stay Home
Shelter in Place is essentially a carbon copy of everything we’ve been writing about. You’ll likely expect to be at home for long periods of time. If you can work from home, all the better. The authorities will request some form of a declaration or affidavit that explains why you are leaving.
Notice the lack of people walking in the streets? Normally, it would be full around this time at noon. This is an immediate sign of Shelter In Place or lockdown as its called here in Italy. To be sure, there’s nothing to be afraid of. It’s just that people are staying indoors.
In yesterday’s video, we thanked all the doctors for their work. Our friend Susie (From Seattle) reminded me that her son is a Police officer and that they too as first responders are having a difficult time. Indeed, all first responders need to be thanked. So, if you know a police officer, firefighter, paramedic or any other first responder, please, call them and thank them for their work.
Top 10 Things to Do if you Are Issued a Shelter In Place or Lockdown Order
- Call someone you haven’t talked to in a while…..high school or college friend you used to be close with. We all have them……….what a great opportunity to reconnect. Feel free to call me!
- Work out like crazy. Face it, we all had a New Year’s resolution to work out and lose weight. You just picked up a whole lot of free time.
- While you’re at it since restaurants will be closed, start working on your diet. Its working for us! We are down 4kg (9 lbs) so far this year!
- Learn something new. For example, Andrea is learning Spanish on Duolingo. Also, I’m still working on my Italian, and I’m up to a 455-day streak! And we together, are learning how to make videos. How are we doing?
- Watch a new movie every day. How cool is that? Watch a “Best Picture” every night.
For the rest of our top 10, watch today’s video, then feel free to comment below!
March 17, 2020 – Day 10, Living Locked Down and Quarantined in Italy
Yesterday was a stressful day for us. Surely, anyone who knows me, knows that I’m generally a happy person. When someone asks, “how are you doing,” I always respond, “Great!” or “Perfect!”. To be sure, shelter in place, or living under lockdown and quarantine here in Modena, Italy, has tested my limits. Don’t worry. I’m still OK.
But yesterday, I was told I could no longer go for walks in the park. That sort of freaked me out. Thanks for Molly from Rome, however, she corrected me by saying that we could still walk or jog on the street. Surely, I verified the accuracy. Thanks, Molly 🙏
What About the Children In Italy?
One thing we don’t talk much about is how the children are coping. Or worse, what are we doing to keep the children busy. While Andrea and I don’t have kids, I do know that when they aren’t working with classwork on their tablets, some are creating art projects. For example, one popular project is to hang painted white sheets out the windows, complete with rainbows, saying “Andrà Tutto Bene.” To be sure, it means “Everything will be ok.” And it will.
Perspectives On Shelter In Place From Italy
When I woke up this morning, I read that San Francisco and 6 Surrounding counties are going to start to go into what they call, “Shelter in place.” Others call it a near-lockdown. Indeed, this is a message we’ve been saying all long. Get ready for it, shelter in place, or lockdown and quarantine measures are coming, but don’t panic. For example, you can read from other folks (like us) who talk about what it’s like living here in Italy these days.
To be sure, it’s not the end of the world. The key is to prepare for it mentally and physically. For the next three weeks, think about social distancing. Admittedly, it’s for everyone’s best interest. And, it seems to be working. This is a screenshot from today’s new cases report. As you can see, it looks like the new cases are starting to fall, for now. I hope the trend continues.
Todays Video, Day 10: Everything Will be OK
In today’s video, we read some of the comments we’ve received over the past 24 hrs. We’ve received tons of positive messages all over social media. Admittedly, I’ve also had some beratement on social media. I get it. You have no idea what it’s like for us. But, you just lack my perspective!
We are journaling our story to explain what it’s like living in shelter and place, or quarantined and locked down, here in Italy due to the Covid-19 coronavirus. And, as difficult as it is, I want you all to get a little glimpse into the challenges folks like us are facing because there’s a chance it’ll happen to you. Thank you much for continuing to follow us, we love you all!
March 16, 2020
Folks, this is week two, and it’s getting difficult to stay positive. I’m sad because I see that both Canada and the United States are slowly showing the same signs are we did just a few short weeks ago. For example, bars, schools, & public gatherings are starting to be closed or forbidden. Further, some states are asking folks over 65 years of age to stay home. We’ve been suggesting everyone just to stay home since the beginning of this. Thankfully, some Canadian media is following our story with the hope that we can help prepare folks for the immediate future.
Covid-19 Coronavirus is Serious In Italy, and the World
Friends, this is serious stuff. Sure, the Covid-19 coronavirus presents a little like the flu, perhaps significantly worse for some (i.e., older folks, and those with underlying health conditions like hypertension and diabetes). But, the real problem is the hospitals. Slowly, the ICUs are filling up fast. On a positive note, new cases in Italy seem to be peaking. Further, all non-essential surgical units are getting converted for ICU beds. Also, private hospitals in our area are pitching in and helping out, on the public system (I.e., no patient has to pay for any of their health services).
Get Ready for the Covid-19 Coronavirus Where You Live
Get ready, and start thinking “Social Distancing.” If the United States and Canada follow what is happening here in Europe, expect:
- Stay at least 1 Meter From Everyone
- Avoid congregating in groups
- Stop going to shopping centers
- If you have to buy food, send one person
- Stop going to parties, dinners, etc. with friends.
These are some of the measures you might be facing.
Further Shelter In Place (Lockdown) Measures
In sad news, as of midnight tonight, our local parks will close for the time being. Indeed, this will severely impact our ability for physical activity. Let that sink in a moment. After tonight, as I understand it, we will not be able to do any physical activity outside our home.
Additionally, if you haven’t done so already, pick up a couple of refills of any medication you might need. Further, pick up some non-perishable food items (pasta, canned goods, etc.). You don’t need to hoard. Just be sensible about it. And no, wholesale amounts of toilet paper is not required.
What If You’re Already Traveling
Both the Canadian and US governments have advised against international travel. Further, the Covid-19 Coronavirus emergency got classified as a Pandemic – just look what’s happening in China and Italy!
Canada Says: Avoid non-essential travel outside of Canada until further notice.
If you are already vacationing somewhere, this should be a wakeup call. It’s time to come home. First, because commercially available flights are less and less available. Second, your travel insurance likely won’t cover pandemic / Covid-19 coronavirus issues.
March 15, 2020
Fun Activities We Do Under Lockdown and Quarantine in Italy
Today is day 8, under virtual house arrest. Indeed, shelter in place is making itself known. We took the opportunity and ramped up productivity. In today’s video, you’ll see some of the fun things we’ve been doing to keep ourselves busy during this lockdown here in Italy. Indeed, it was a lot of fun to put together on such a rainy day. Typically wet weather isn’t news; however, in this case, a rainy day means we stay inside. Yep, while a little rain in Vancouver never bothered us, it’s sort of fallen a little out of style. As a result, we didn’t go for any walks in the park. Today, however, we hope it will be different.
CTV News Vancouver Interview
CTV News in Vancouver called for an interview (Click the image below to watch it). To be honest, I’m both a little surprised and flattered about the number of interview requests we’ve been getting. Indeed, our message about what it’s like to be living in Italy under quarantine and lockdown due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus is getting out.
March 14, 2020 – Day 7: Under Quarantine and Lockdown here in Italy due to Covid-19 Coronavirus
Good morning! Thank heavens, its Saturday. To be honest, it’s felt like a month has gone by since we were locked down here in Modena, Italy. First, the stock markets have gone haywire this week. Indeed, it’s a cause for concern from retirees. Then, we worried about Andrea’s parents, worrying about us. To be sure, this whole Covid-19 Coronavirus disaster has created more worry and fear here in Italy than anything. I can’t wait for it to be over.
Later in the morning, Andrea and I started making tonight’s dinner. Well, I grated the cheese. We are also working on a fun video tomorrow about what you can do if you are living shelter in place, locked down or quarantined at home. For sure, all those days sailing in inside cabins on cruise ships have well prepared us for this exercise.
Later, I will be doing some much-needed housework, and some other fun stuff, all while recording it on video for tomorrow’s special. We can’t wait to show it to you!
What if You are Concerned About The Covid-19 Coronavirus?
Last, if you or someone you know wants to chat with us, feel free to contact us or send us a message. We know this is a difficult time, perhaps you might be worried about Covid-19 Coronavirus, or getting locked down. Either way, we are happy to chat about it, we have tons of time! Naturally, if you have a medical-related question, call your doctor. Or, if your city/town/province/state has a Covid-19 hotline, they might be of assistance as well.
(Friday) March 13, 2020
This morning, we visited the market to pick up some fresh fruit.
As you can see, it was a bit of a sad ghost down. Interesting how it’s also Friday the 13th. On any other day, you’d think its a prank. But, here in Italy, many are following the rules and staying home during this Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic. On that note, some are asking us why we are still leaving our homes. First, we’re allowed to buy food. Second, we can go for a walk. Third, we are allowed to help out Andrea’s parents. Indeed, we are outside far less than usual. It’s a little like house arrest. But, we’ll get through it.
After the market, and on the way home, we went to the pharmacy to pick up some supplies. Interestingly, today, we all had to sanitize our hands and wear gloves. As I said before, it sort of feels like the twilight zone. But, if it helps prevent the spread of Covid-19 Coronavirus here in Italy, I don’t mind doing my part. All in all, we were out about 15 mins today.
BBC Called for A Possible Interview!
After lunch, we had a call from the BBC. To be sure, Covid-19 Coronavirus is big news in the UK right now, just as it is everywhere in the world. Unfortunately, not everyone appears to be preparing as best as they could. And, it seems the UK is interested in what it’s like living in Italy under quarantine and lockdown due to the Covid-19 coronavirus.
Today, and for the next video in our series, we put together a video entitled “Get Ready.” In this video, we discuss the things you might want to do beforehand, to get prepared, in case your town or city gets locked down or quarantined.
March 12, 2020
Those who know me know that I am an eternal optimist on a bad day. Further, a realist on a real day. These days, it’s tough for me to keep positive. One thing that’s kept us going is the incredible outpour from people all over the world. Indeed, it’s in times like this when we know who are real friends are. You all know who you are. So, for everyone who has been thinking of us lately, *BIG VIRTUAL KISSES HUGS* – but from one meter apart, for now…
An Overall Sadness in Italy, over the Lockdown, Quarantine due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus
Now, on to new business. Yesterday, Italy declared all stores to close, with some exceptions: Pharmacies, Tobacco Shops (Who should close anyway), and Food Stores. To be sure, it wasn’t much of a surprise as we had received emails from some stores that they were closing for the time being.
Indeed, many people have been choosing to stay inside – as they should. Further, we have a lot of older folks here in Italy, and they are the most vulnerable to the Covid-19 Coronavirus. Especially those with underlying health conditions. While there are some who, like us, continue to take walks in the park, I don’t know how long it will last. Also, this poses a problem for us, as we continue to visit with Andrea’s parents. Rest assured, we stay far away from others, wash our hands often, and take all steps necessary to avoid close contact with the public.
Economic Issues Here in Italy
Indeed, we worry about these small shops. As for the factories, they remain open, for now. Elsewhere, in North America, we are starting to see the same signs that we saw here just a few short weeks ago. Crowd activities, group sports, etc. are slowly getting canceled. Flights to Europe from the US are now getting canceled as well. To be sure, these are the things China had to do to get a grip.
What Should you Do: Our Advice
Don’t panic. Don’t be afraid. Be prepared, because the Covid-19 Coronavirus in North America is just a few weeks, perhaps a little more or less, just behind us here in Italy. Stay away from crowds. Keep a few days of extra food. Don’t worry about toilet paper. Start making plans to work from home. Start making plans for the kids to be taken care of because schools are no doubt going to get closed. It’s not forever. We will beat this. In the meantime, life is going to get a little strange.
If you have travel plans, please, just cancel them. Or, have a Plan B. The WHO has declared the Covid-19 Coronavirus a Pandemic. As a result, practically every travel insurance will likely deny a claim due to Covid-19. Just stay home.
March 11, 2020
Today we visited the supermarket. Interesting times. Many people wearing masks, and we had to wait a few minutes before we could go inside. Interestingly, the store did not want lots of people in the store at the same time.
We recorded our 5th video but realized after publishing that I made a mistake in the first few seconds. To be sure, this is our Day 4. We have posted below our latest video about what it’s like living in Italy during a shelter in place order, under lockdown and quarantine because of the Covid-19 and coronavirus.
As you can see, we moved the recording outside. Indeed, the temperature has risen to a comfortable 19C today in Modena, Italy. So, this morning, I went to the garage and picked up all our patio furniture, and brought it to our garden. Indeed, it was a good feeling, doing something “normal” during this weird time.
March 10, 2020 – After the Dust Settled
Here is our latest video:
Indeed, there were many fewer people in this part of Italy. Admittedly Surely, it was because the newest latest rule changes asking people to stay home. While we didn’t see too many people wearing masks, there were a few. Notably, we should remain 1 Meter away from practically everything and everyone. Naturally, this was to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus here in Italy.
We visited the market this morning. Again, we are allowed to buy groceries! Here are some photos of what we saw:
The Local News Here In Italy Regarding Lockdown & Quarantine Measures
Repubblica.it has finally released a deciphered list of things we can / can’t do. For those who don’t speak Italian, the rules are clear. Everyone is to stay home as much as possible, unless it’s for something necessary, like buying groceries or going to work. Additionally, those having a fever over 37.5C must stay home at all times.
Interestingly Mortgage Payments, Utility Payments, and Taxes are not required to be paid during this time.
Some good news out China: they reported only 19 new cases yesterday in the entire country. And South Korea is looking up as well.
Also, NewsTalk 1010 interviewed us today. It was nice to be able to share our story from here in Italy, to folks living in Toronto who might get concerned what it’s like to live in quarantine or lockdown conditions due to the Covid-19 coronavirus. Thank you for this opportunity.
Morning – All of Italy is now Locked down, And Under Quarantine – Measures increased.
Things got messy real quick last night. At around 10 pm local time, the Prime Minister of Italy, Giuseppe Conte, announced further measures regarding the lockdown. Now, all of Italy is under a Shelter in Place order or locked-down and under quarantine due to the COVID-19 coronavirus. Further, as we understand it, we can only leave our home to go to work, buy food (in our local town), and then return home. It is unclear if we are allowed to visit family, but we will see.
As mentioned previously, my main concern is about the local economy. Indeed, this is going to be a challenging month for small businesses. But, Italians are resilient, and I have no doubt they will get through it. Time will tell. Everyone, so far, is still allowed to go to work. Factories remain open, and this is good. Hopefully, we can keep these factories running.
A Glimmer Of Hope?
A glimmer of hope and some good news is that China seems to continue on its path of positivity in battling the Covid-19 coronavirus. Reuters is reporting that Wuhan has now closed all its temporary hospitals. Indeed, the makeshift hospitals got built at lightning speed about one month ago.
In other news, we are being interviewed by Newstalk 1010 in Toronto this morning. I guess our Twitter and Youtube accounts are attracting some additional attention. Indeed, we have a lot more time on our hands these days than usual. So, we’re using the time to be productive.
Our Immediate Plans for Shelter In Place / Lockdown
For those of you who are wondering, we will be buying some fruits and vegetables this morning. Then, off to Andrea’s parents’ home for lunch. Hopefully, they won’t be too gloomy amid this whole situation.
Last, we are happy to be able to continue to provide updates on what is happening here. Thank you all for keeping us company, and sending us messages of support. It’s nice to know we aren’t alone in this big, big world. Indeed, we’re all in this together.
March 9, 2020
So today was a pretty typical day for us. If we didn’t listen to the radio or watch the news, we would never know that our region in Italy was under a shelter in place, quarantine or lockdown order. We have, however, been getting lots of comments from social media. Our Facebook Page and Twitter have been working overtime. Furthermore, on Youtube, we’ve been getting lots of views as well.
What did we get up to today? As mentioned previously, it was a pretty typical day. We visited Andrea’s parents (who are always happy to see us, especially now). Then, we made lunch, and I went to my Italian School. Andrea and his mom went to do some food shopping.
As you can see in the video, the food stores are full. I think the only thing lacking may be hand sanitizer. But, for us, it’s not a problem. We wash our hands often. The World Health Organization suggests doing just that. Finally, no one thinks I’m crazy anymore for washing my hands 200 times a day!!
After school, Andrea and I visited his Aunt and Uncle for a quick visit. To be sure, this is all very common here in Italy. Indeed, family time is crucial.
Wow. What an evening it was yesterday. Indeed, we recorded our first video yesterday. We went to downtown Modena, ate gelato, kicked a soccer ball around, then returned home to start this post. Excitingly, once published, people from all over the world began following us on Twitter, Youtube, Instagram, and site. Also, our website started to explode. Thank heavens we have good servers. Then, Good Morning America asked us to interview what it’s like to live under a shelter in place, or in quarantine and lockdown conditions here in Italy. Naturally, we granted it right away.
Don’t Watch The Stocks
After waking up this morning, we watched the financial markets. Investors are freaking out a little. If you are an investor, you might want to turn off that news for the time being.
We will begin reporting the latest cases here in Italy. Repubblica is reporting 1326 New Covid-19 cases this morning here in Italy (6387 Cases total), and 622 recoveries thus far. As we understand it, the vast majority of folks recover. Again, we are not afraid of Covid-19. To be sure, the CDC reports the high-risk group is those who are older, with underlying health conditions such as heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes. We just need to keep a level head and think clearly, and as unemotionally as possible.
Here is our latest video we recorded this morning:
March 8, 2020
Wow. I woke up to 100’s of words of encouragement all over social media, thank you!!!! Also, I tried to find some articles that made any sense out of what I could and could not do. To be sure, our area is supposed to be under a Shelter in Place, or quarantine order. Unfortunately, I was unable to find much about where I can and cannot go within Italy during this COVID-19 / Coronavirus quarantine situation. I have no idea. Here’s what I do know about being locked down.
Areas in Italy Affected By the Quarantine & Lockdown
According to Repubblica, The following provinces in Italy are affected by the quarantine.
Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Reggio Emilia, Rimini, Pesaro Urbino, Venezia, Padova, Treviso, Asti, Vercelli, Novara, Verbano Cusio Ossola, and Alessandria
Until April 2, 2020, all public schools, museums, churches are all closed. Also, restaurants must close at 6 pm. The point is, the government wants to limit the amount of human to human activity. I get it. But at the same time, humans are social people. So, as it’s unnatural to be under quarantine, I understand why some choose to go outside.
Andrea and went to take a look and see who was out and about. Then, I drove to downtown Modena today to see if there were any differences. To be sure, we are not afraid of the virus.
It’s Not a Zombie Apocalypse
What we saw wasn’t the zombie apocalypse that some might think. For example, I would say there was about a 30-40% reduction of people strolling the piazzas today. Also, the stores were, for the most part, closed. Also, many of the restaurants and coffee bars w closed as well. But, for those brave restaurant owners who opened, they were all full. Yes, folks – people are still eating, drinking, and sharing laughs today.
Also, we will be publishing more videos regarding the lockdown and quarantine situation here in Italy through the next few days. This one is our first video in the series.
March 7, 2020 – Lockdown and Quarantine Announced in Italy
Andrea and I were out with friends, and around 9 pm, the news leaked that our area, the Province of Modena, Italy (in the Emilia Romagna region), would be put in quarantine. Some say its an Italian lockdown. Suddenly, I felt like I was in prison. I’ve never felt like that before.
But, let’s get one thing straight. I am not scared of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Indeed, I am afraid of the panic the virus is creating in many.
Is The Covid-19 Coronavirus The End of the World?
Here in Italy, the shelter in place aka lockdown and quarantine is in effect, a giant travel restriction. We will not be able to travel outside our province until April 3, 2020. Its not the end of the world, or is it?
We’ve already seen significant economic effects as a result of this fear. Indeed, I think this might cause a global recession. And, I’m starting to see the damage right here in Italy. People have been emailing me regularly since mid-February asking whether or not they should cancel their trip here.
I’m not a doctor, but, while I’m not fearful of the COVID-19 Coronavirus, I accept the fact that it will spread. Indeed, I believe the virus has no borders.
We Won’t Fear this Quarantine and Lockdown in Italy
For the foreseeable future, we will use this story to share what it’s like for Andrea and me to live here in Modena, Italy. We will make every attempt to be impartial and keep a level head and provide facts and links in support.
We will be living on lockdown and in quarantine here in Italy, but we’ll get through it. We’re not afraid. Thank you for reading. It means the world to us.
Rick & Andrea
In March 2017, Rick and Andrea started Travel Addicts Life as a way to share their travel photos and videos with the world. And boy did it ever grow! Today, we are proud to offer content here on Travel Addicts Life, on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube.
Thanks for reading!
Rick & Andrea