Dispelling the myth: a national act of self harming
“Countries that are friends treat each other differently.”Why?
Being left off the travel safe list is a decision here in the Algarve that everyone regrets and does not understand in light of the facts.The decision is a disgrace, deeply unfair and penalises not only Portugal but the Algarve in particular.Many now are gutted that Portugal has been excluded from the list of countries they can travel to without quarantining on their return home. The Portuguese have worked so hard at preparing for overseas visitors.British born Portuguese residents like ourselves and Portuguese friends alike, have everything in place to manage visitors safely. It seems Portugal has been singled out by their oldest ally. It’s a bitter pill to swallow !
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson was called upon to “Get his finger out” and “Give a nation that has done very well in fighting this virus a summer season from the start of July”.Chance would be a fine thing.When his father Stanley Johnson flauntingly ignored all advice to travel to his second home in Greece via Bulgaria,confidence waned yet again.
The UK is still living in the past.They NO LONGER rule over a large part of the world as they used to in the days of empire and slavery.Time moves on, and they should move on with the times.The "experts" (ex is the unknown and a spert is a drip under pressure) are totally engrossed in their own glory.
We have lived in Portugal for some 14 years now and never had any health problems here in the Algarve, including with Covid 19.This decision is a mistake by the British Government, which could have been avoided if it simply listened to the 18,000 British residents who live in the region and who can witness in first person the example set during the pandemic in Portugal.
The only problem with the econo monkeys is that they think/know that UK currency would be leaving the UK instead of going into their own coffers. Economy surpasses lives.Throughout this whole pandemic, may I call him Mr Johnson, has megaphoned his way through his own interpretation of what was being said abroad and provided a nation of shopkeepers with a pretty poor translation. It amounts to a national act of self-harming.As Portugal´s prime minister Antonio Costa succinctly put it "Generals are not exchanged in the middle of a battlefield....but no club can play the champions league with a team that only loses"
Imagine your first love affair with a handsome Al Garvey.It was a holiday romance you always wanted to return to.Along the way you dabbled with others.You perhaps foolishly snogged Benny Dorm back in the day or had a fiddle with a potentially good package that was Agios Nik (olaos) and a summer fling with Swiss Jung Frau Joch just didn´t do it for you.The larger the package never necessarily meant the more promising the potential.So it is often first love that comes full circle.When the Al garve takes your head on his shoulder
and offers you a passionate and warm embrace,your knees buckle and you start breathing in a whole new way.You wake up to realising that you don´t quite know why you had a snog with any one else before.
Soon after arrival you experience the country is full of amazing things: historic sights, killer wines, breathtaking landscapes, and some of the finest beaches in the world.
One thing I always used to say it lacked was good marketing, but that was over a decade ago—that was then. Even as the country has evolved into a bona fide tourism hotspot, its residents remain humble salespeople. Their style of hospitality is warm and modest, tied more to an eagerness to share their traditions than to any capitalist desire.
My motivation is therefore to fight for my beliefs and for Portugal. Given that I do not have direct access to influencers ,so on this matter I hope that I can influence people (as people matter in this world) hopefully through this blog. I also believe that we have to support each other as people at this time in anyway we can, no matter which side of the pond you are from or reside.As part of a recent tour, some ‘influencers’ were singled out by the Algarve tourist board to visit the East Algarve, taking in Alcoutim, Olhão, Vila Real de Santo António, Castro Marim and São Brás de Alportel to discover some of the Algarve’s hidden gems, “often forgotten, albeit unfairly”.
The simplest route as I see it is to fly to Sevilha and then drive, coming in at the back garden gate of the Algarve,The Guadiana river crossing re-opened this week after borders with Spain and Portugal had been closed for three months.
And how long I ask before some of our enterprising airport transfer companies offer to pick you up from Sevilha and take you to back for your return flight. It's only two hours away,direct fast motorway all the way.
Portugal and its people need tourists to live and survive through this pandemic and indeed tourists need Portugal for its safeness, beautiful resorts, friendly people and a cheap holiday to recover and relax after being in lockdown for so long. As such the introduction of an Air Bridge between the countries would have helped both Portugal and UK residents in my world. There should be no sense of discrimination regarding Portugal in the resumption of flights from the United Kingdom based on the increase in cases of Covid-19 in the Lisbon region.
"Portugal continues to have a mortality rate much lower and a much higher rate of testing than that of the United Kingdom.Track and trace was in place from the very outset.The Algarve remains the same destination (as before Covid-19), with much to offer its visitors, but even safer and better prepared than before to welcome those who choose to spend their summer holiday here".
“We were clearly penalised for speaking the truth. Is it safer to travel to countries that test half, or even a third, or prefer to vacation in a country that is truly committed to preserving public health and tourism?”said João Fernandes, President of the Algarve Regional Tourism board.
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