Raising the roof for those on the front line

Spanish balcony
ALTHOUGH social media has been responsible for much of the false information circulating about the coronavirus and State of Emergency, it has also resulted in one of the few good news stories to come out of the crisis. A message started to circulate last Friday evening, the day the emergency measures were announced, asking people to come out onto their balconies at 10pm to applaud health staff in recognition of their efforts on the front line. This was an immediate success and was soon extended to include overwhelmed supermarket staff and the time changed to 8pm so children could also participate. Reflecting the Spanish love of noise this was soon accompanied by everything from whoops and cheers to the banging together of pots and pans. Many similar “balcony initiatives” are now taking place at a local level – Valencia for example has a terrace based (your own of course) Fallas programme to replace the cancelled fiesta involving musical instruments and singing. The collective applause is also important in keeping the sense of community alive. If you search for hashtags such as #YoMeQuedoEn Casa (I’m staying home) and #QuedateEnTuCasa (Stay in your home) you will find links to videos of the evening lockdown activities as well as local initiatives. And a round of applause to that!

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