I thought I should document at least some of the experience that Hobart is facing during the Covid-19 pandemic before we come out of lock-down. We were much luckier than most of the planet, being an island off the island that is Australia, but honestly, like nearly every country, our local and national governments still failed us – we had plenty of warning what was coming!
I stopped on my way home from work for a quick photo stroll, a mild night with still waters across the Hobart docks. I’m luckier than most, I still have a job though I’ve lost over half my income due to the closing of Salamanca Market where I have a stall. I’m not complaining though and quite enjoying reclaiming my Saturday’s to get things done around home.
Although looking at the photo above and the traffic still on our roads, I can only assume there are plenty of other essential workers in Hobart commuting home after a hard day’s work or perhaps getting “essential” supplies.
The moon rises over Hunter Street, which is home to the University of Tasmania’s art precinct, restaurants and accommodation – all of which is closed.
Constitution Dock, normally a bustling hub for both tourists and locals is quiet. The Museum of Tasmania, housed in the buildings along the wharf apron is closed.
I had to wait a bit for a break in the traffic to get this shot of the lovely old May-Queen. Behind it are some old buildings housing tourist focused businesses including the Lark Distillery – makers of world renowned whiskey, who now make hand sanitiser to keep their business and staff going.
The Grand Chancellor has become a 14 day “prison”, along with many other hotels around Hobart. Instead of housing tourists, they have become the temporary quarantine home to people who have flown in from the mainland and overseas.
Previously, incoming people were made to self quarantine at home for 14 days – but they weren’t tested before going into the general population.
Another view of Hunter Street. It appears most of the fishing boats are home, we export a lot of our fine fresh produce overseas but much of the demand has been affected.
My big back-yard is closed. Apparently a group of people did the wrong thing so we are all punished. All this has done is force people who would exercise up on the tracks in relative isolation (and take photographs) to do it in concentrated areas – like along my road and the Pipeline track outside the park. When you compare it to visiting the still open and crowded Bunning’s Hardware or K-Mart for example, it seems extremely unreasonable!
Still, we are so lucky in Tasmania, especially down south. The island has had only a few deaths and an outbreak in the North West which appears to have been brought under control now with strict isolation measures. There have been no new cases for several days.
I agree with the governments tough stance, though they could have acted earlier and there seems to be little policing or testing of the general population. I think we were lucky in that we dodged a bullet, but that gun is still fully loaded and has a hair trigger. Best to keep your head down, and your vest on.
Stay safe, keep calm and stay at home if you can.