Новые известия(en)
A holiday without logic and gifts. Resident of Riga told about the fight against the virus in Latvian
28 December 2020, 14:17
In the world
A holiday without logic and gifts. Resident of Riga told about the fight against the virus in Latvian
Photo: neatkariga.nra.lv
I listen to the complaints of numerous Moscow acquaintances discussing these or those covid restrictions - and I spread my hands.

If you, my dears, lived for several days with us, in Latvia, you would love your authorities terribly after that, making sure that there are places in the world, where logic is a hundred times less.

Peteris Lanis

You have there even on New Year's in a restaurant, they say, you can't sit, and for the absence of a mask in the metro they are fined, and in general, everything that is possible, the authorities do not like that. Friends from Russia tell how the virus hides until 11 pm, but an hour before midnight it goes out on its terrible hunt - otherwise how can you explain that drinking establishments are closed at this very moment?

I will not tell you what is happening with catering establishments - the search for a balance between the need to take care of the health of citizens and the task of not killing the business at its root is not easy everywhere, and will be criticized everywhere. But what is happening in the sphere of trade and in the sphere of education deserves a separate description.

A couple of weeks ago, after another strengthening of the emergency regime, the local authorities were stunned: now on weekends only essential goods can be sold in stores. It is clear that shops for clothing, household goods, etc. closed, but even with the groceries, complete confusion began: the previously unknown list of essential goods began to be adjusted every week, and a trip to the store began to resemble a quest. Let's try to guess what we will get this time? Even a preliminary study of the published lists did not come close to the answer: there was no alcohol in the Latvian language, while it was in the Russian version. Over time, these discrepancies were corrected - they cleaned up alcohol in all versions.

You go on weekends for baby food - and the section of goods for children is wrapped in tape: this is not a necessity, explain, they say, to a child, let him endure until Monday.

By the way, the problem arose for everyone who was preparing Christmas gifts now: wrapping paper, scotch tape, gift bags are also not essential goods.

Now imagine what happens in the malls on a Friday night. I remember you complained that when checking digital passes you got a crush on the Moscow metro in April? So, the people of Riga, who had never seen the metro before, now felt what it was like when they went on the eve of the weekend for groceries. Here you have the metro, and the Soviet queue for a deficit, and any other comparison will reflect little of what is happening. Why the covid is afraid of such a crowd on Friday and does not attack it, but attacks on the weekend is impossible to understand.

But the authorities do not draw conclusions - on the contrary, they joyfully report what is happening. More precisely, she reports that she is right. After the first two weekends, a release was released, the essence of which boiled down to the fact that phone billing data showed: people supported weekend bans and now they go to stores on Saturday and Sunday much less often. Well, why go there, one wonders, if you don't stock up on anything but bread and milk?

But even these innovations pale when you look at what is happening in the field of education. Since October, students in grades 7-12 study remotely. The younger ones were not sent home - they need contact with the teacher, they cannot study at the computer. But when the numbers became very alarming (more than a thousand people fall ill every day in Latvia - despite the fact that we are exactly one hundred times smaller than Russia in terms of the real population), the younger ones were not sent home, but they began to introduce innovation after innovation. Among others, there was a decree that now for each child in the class there should be at least three square meters. But all classes are 40-50-60 meters long. Moreover, children - under 30 in each!

- What to do with extra children? - the schools were asked by the relevant minister.

- Try to negotiate with neighboring premises. There are enterprises, organizations near each of the schools, they will come to the rescue.

- But where to get additional teachers?

- Then try to plant some of the students in the corridor. The teacher deals with part of the students in the classroom, and for the part goes out into the corridor...

It's probably not worth telling how many memes on the Internet this was accompanied. As a result, most of the schools, on whose shoulders the responsibility for making the decision, was forced to follow this path: one class studies in the assembly hall, the other in the gym, the rest are sorted into corridors. And given the fact that there are also a limited number of floors and corridors, the study takes place in several shifts.

And the fact that all the shifts collide anyway in the school wardrobe (some take their clothes, others give them in) and no isolation occurs at the same time - this no longer worries anyone. The order has been formally fulfilled.

How is, for example, the 10-day quarantine order for those arriving in the country fulfilled? The newcomer sits at home (a separate paragraph of the rules allows officially violating quarantine for the sake of a trip to the forest or to the sea), but all other family members living with him have the right to move outside the home without any restrictions.

So there is no need to say that something is wrong in Russia and there is no logic somewhere...