Today is a very special day. The island is now completely free of the virus and at midnight, lockdown is over. A young boy who came here to escape the repression of his own country was the last to test positive and is now clear and in the care of our community.
Tomorrow we start a new life. The island never faltered but we are resolute in our direction. The President of Spain announced “a new stage is beginning” in which “we have recovered the street, reconquered mobility” and in which “the economy begins to beat”. We echo this here on the little rock in the sea.
Tourism has not restarted in any great quantity and might not for a while. We welcome the first flights from mainland Spain in the coming days but hotels for our larger groups (UK, Germany, Ireland) are still in the process of opening. All those planning to travel this year are advised to follow international guidance on the pages of your government.
This weekend many residents are out enjoying the sunshine, the quiet cafes and even the great Cesar Manrique monuments to which the islanders have been given ten days of free entry. Personally my family will take the camera to Timanfaya to accept a memory of the stark beauty in reflective isolation. Photo coming soon!
All of us talk of you returning here. We will welcome you fully. You are our friends and our livelihood. When you do come, there will be new rules. For example, even without the virus here, every single person wears a mask when we enter a building. And the distancing laws will stay in place until a vaccine is found.
But we are free. For today we are breathing the freshest air and celebrating that our community overcame this wave. If there are more waves to come, you will find Lanzarote utterly capable of riding them out. We surf over that devil and rise on the the tide. Always, we will rise.
Forgive us our few days of joyful quiet and we will prepare a welcome as genuine and true as the great sun that warms this land.
Photo by Juan Carlos Otero on Unsplash