Quarantine looms over our France holiday

Our long-awaited three weeks holiday to France is due to begin on Saturday.

We’ve got a ferry to catch from Portsmouth to San Malo, then campsites booked in the Dordogne and the Med Coast.I’d usually be excited, looking forward to reliving some of our favourite experiences.  

Where we camp in the Dordogne feels like it’s in the middle of nowhere – beautiful lush countryside and so peaceful.

The resort in the south of France is quite a contrast.  Sunshine and temperatures in the high 20s – made bearable by a cooling sea breeze – on a stunning golden sandy beach and an azure blue sea often warm enough to bask in.

It’s livelier there, lots of bars and restaurants and even a beachside music bar which holds the occasional rave where I’ve had some of the best nights of my life.

I’ve got no idea how to feel today.  We were lucky enough to get to France a few weeks ago and it was ok there.  Things were quieter than they would have been but there was enough going on for us to still have a good time.

I’ve read this morning that coronavirus cases in France have nearly doubled in the past 24 hours as Prime Minister Jean Castex warned that the country has been going “the wrong way” for two weeks.   The health ministry reported 1,397 new infections since Monday though the numbers of deaths remain low. 

There is now a very real chance that tomorrow the UK Government will impose a 14-day quarantine on people returning from France.

This restriction is of only marginal concern to me as someone who works from home but is a big issue to Mrs Jones who would need permission from her employer to work from home.

If, that’s not granted, it could result in a costly period of unpaid leave following the holiday or could make us change our holiday plans.

We could decide not to go at all or we could leave France part way through our three weeks and head to somewhere with lower infections to avoid the quarantine. That, in itself, is a risky business with other likely destinations showing Covid spikes.

I have to say I’m no more concerned about catching Covid in France than I am here at home.  We’ll mask up and take care to socially distance on the ferry then after that we’re in our own campervan bubble for the entire three weeks.  Any eating out or socialising will be al fresco which is supposed to be safer.  

It is likely we will go whatever the quarantine situation but then you wonder what sort of holiday we will have.

  • Will we have to wear face masks on the beach?
  • Will the bars and restaurants be shut?
  • How will Covid affect people’s mood, will it feel a bit sad?

I suppose we’ll find out the answer to these questions soon enough.  I know France’s countryside, beaches, sea and sunny weather will still be there and I am sure that’ll be enough to have a very different holiday but still a good one.

Published by brianjonesdiary

Dad, husband, brother and son. Interested in travel, politics, sport, health and much more. Semi-retired and aiming to making the most of life as I approach my sixth decade.

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