I am in Lockdown [updated]

[Update: the state government has decided the plan was too complicated and now the Greater Sydney Area is all in lockdown. So my situation is basically the same but less ambiguous.]

The delta variant has officially come to town in Sydney and once again the oddly social class nature of Covid is on display. There’s nothing new about infectious diseases having a socio-economic aspect – social interaction and mobility play a role, as do access to healthcare and resources. However, at different stages Covid has had an odd impact on wealthier areas, often radiating out from areas of affluence (e.g. in the early international spread via ski resorts). That impact, of course, affects people of all income levels not just rich people.

For Sydney, the location of the airport and quarantine hotels is at the Eastern end of this very asymmetrical city and that’s also where the posh suburbs are. Not just posh suburbs of course and not just wealthy people. The suburb of Redfern is caught up in this core area and while that suburb is undergoing rapid gentrification it still retains a significant Aboriginal community. The current outbreak has put four local government areas into lockdown and basically, those areas are the main CBD (the bit with the opera house and the bridge that gets blown up by aliens) and the suburbs directly east of the CBD with the beaches, gazillion-dollar homes, pricey shops and (not so many any more) scruffy backpackers etc.

On a personal note, I’m safely well away from that area, way out in the sprawling areas that are prone to bushfires but less prone to sporadic Covid 19 outbreaks. But…the lockdown also applies to people who have worked in CBD in the last two weeks for at least three days. Which…isn’t quite me, did two days of work in the CBD the other week but better safe than sorry. So according to the official advice I’m not obliged to be in lockdown but I’m going to err on the side of caution.

The slow and fumbled vaccine roll-out here is part of the problem. There are still lots of vulnerable people not vaccinated and this current outbreak involves an unvaccinated limo driver whose job was ferrying flight crew to their hotel.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-06-26/more-than-a-million-sydneysiders-now-in-lockdown/100244924

18 thoughts on “I am in Lockdown [updated]

  1. So I’m thinking you’re working from home for a while?

    Does Tim know a few cats have gotten it? That might keep him out of your home office. 🙂

    I was awakened this morning by a message from the neighboring county telling me to come on down to the vaccination center this weekend. A general text to everyone in the area — Mr. LT got it too.

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  2. An Australian visitor unknowingly had COVID19 when they visited New Zealand (Wellington)* last weekend from Sydney. Turns out they have the delta variant, but they also have had one dose of COVID. Currently Wellington is in Level 2 (mostly life as normal, but mask-wearing continues to be mandatory on public transport, social distancing when out & about & no more than groups of 100 at any time). So far nobody So far, nobody who might have been exposed has tested positive, so we might have dodged a bullet here if the vaccine made them less contagious.

    The rest of New Zealand is at Level 1 (life is normal except for mandatory mask-wearing on public transport, and we are encouraged to use the COVID tracer app wherever we go).

    *Currently Australia is one of the few countries whose people are allowed to travel into New Zealand without having to spend 2 weeks in a quarantine facility, and from the locations of interested listed, the visitor from Sydney had a very good weekend.

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    1. Should that be “one dose of COVID vaccine”. (I.e. is it a breakthrough infection or a reinfection?)

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      1. @stewart, this news article says that they have had one dose, which I assume is one of the 2-dose vaccines they are on. But even the Pfizer vaccine which is 95% effective means there is a one in 20 chance the virus gets through. I have rolled enough D20 to know that that usually happens when you least want it.

        https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2021/06/coronavirus-there-may-be-a-reduced-risk-of-outbreak-in-wellington-thanks-to-sydney-covid-19-case-s-first-vaccine-dose.html

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    2. Soonleenz this sounds like paradise. I know I can meet up to 10 people (I think children, people who had it and vacinated don’t count), 100 is a lot.

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        1. In Sydney the Delta Variant is showing to spread much more quickly and with less contact. I suspect that if we’d been stricter about masks indoors we’d be in a better position now. Basically, aside from public transport, mask wearing was rare.

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      1. I have to confess I have less problems with mask than with some other thinks.
        We have plans for a family visit. 4 households (one only a five year old child so hopfully shouldn’t count) 5 grownups (at last 2 imunised 1 had Covid) 3 children(which aren’t old enough to count in it) and everyone did some check if it was legal.

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  3. @Cora, I think there it is because there are no community cases in New Zealand for such a long time that it is hard to convince people to wear mask as they go about their lives. As it is, even though mask-wearing is mandatory on public transport, I have seen more & more people on the bus not wearing a mask. Complacency is one of our big issues.

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  4. Hey, me too! We just got back from visiting my mother-in-law in the states, though. I’ve had my first two COVID tests, the one I took in Dayton negative and results not yet received for the one I took at the border. Canada requires 14 days of self isolation and gave us a test kit to take on day 8 in a zoom meeting with a medical professional.

    There’s an outside chance I’ll get out early as they’re talking about lifting the quarantine requirement for vaccinated travellers on July 5.

    This is all a weird contrast with Ohio and Kentucky, where I would say 10% of people we saw were wearing masks. Even my mother-in-law’s nursing home didn’t require masks for vaccinated visitors (which they didn’t check).

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    1. And now I’m reading horror stories of people who had to stay in quarantine longer because Switch Health (the company doing COVID testing for the federal government) screwed up their tests! I do hope they let us go on the 5th.

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  5. No increased restrictions here yet, although there’s talk. But we are back to being fortress SA – no interstate visitors from anywhere but Tasmania (and since it’s pretty much impossible to get from here to Tas without passing through one of the other states, not really there either).
    Crossing my fingers for you all in Sydney (and NT).

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