EXPATS on the Costa Almeria have welcomed the extra freedom from today, Monday as the whole province entered Phase one of the lockdown de-escalation, meaning bars, restaurants, cafes, hotels and other small businesses can start the move towards a ‘new normality.’
The relaxation on confinement regulations and restrictions on movement allow visits to family and friends, shopping without an appointment, driving within the province and enjoying a drink or a bite to eat on bar, restaurant and cafe terraces.
There are still limitations. Social distancing is very much an obligation, strict health measures have to be followed and not all businesses and establishments which could open have done so, not least because of imposed maximums on customer capacity.
But after nearly two months of lockdown, the changes under Phase one are widely seen as a positive advance, and a good number of expat residents were clearly keen to get out and about.
Back home from a lunch out in a popular Mojacar dinery, Rosemary Shingfield was one expat reporting on local forums she had thoroughly enjoyed her meal out and commenting on the staff’s strict adherence to recommended health and safety practices: wearing gloves and face visors and sanitising tables and chairs as soon as they were vacated.
Anita Oakes echoed Rosemary’s impressions after coffee in another Mojacar cafe.
“All is good, staff disinfect table before serving you. Tables spaced well apart, not too many people here,” she said.
There is also a strong feeling among some expats on showing support for local businesses which have reopened their doors.
“We have to support them or they will have to close again!” comments Janet Jenner.
“We will definitely be calling into different bars/restaurants for a coffee/food/drink today and going forwards to support them as we don’t want to lose them,” promised Naomi Morgan.