Madrid in state of panic

Up until last week everything was relatively calm. As calm as things can be in Madrid. You see this is a city that goes crazy on a regular basis. In fact, the whole is country works like this. 


We survived the economic crisis, just, and the country was starting to regain a bit of the pre-2008 days - people were spending money and the economic feeling was more upbeat. 


Up until last Sunday people were still going to their football games and political demonstrations. Just another weekend in Madrid. 


Then came Monday and the general mood started to shift. By 7.30pm all hell had broken loose. 


Supermarket shelves started to empty after the regional government decided to close schools and universities for the next 15 days. 


Parents went into panic mode. "Who is going to look after the kids?", you could hear people ask? "Los abuelos? But aren't they in the biggest risk group of catching the virus?"


We had one day to get things organised. 


Companies also started to panic. Workers would have to work from home, if they could. If not, the risk of contagion was apparently high.  


Other companies started to do the numbers and realised that a forced closure, similar to the one in Italy, was not out of the question. 


The IBEX 35, Spain's main stock market, plunged like never before to be down about 40% in the last three weeks. There are some cheap companies around at the moment for people with the cash to buy them. 


You see, viruses can spread fast. And in some countries more than others. It's not uncommon here to double kiss 20 people at the weekend. 


Today, three politicians tested positive to the disease and two of them were prominent at rallies last weekend. 


So what will tomorrow have in store for us? What terrible news will grace our newspapers? 


Let's see. Stay tuned. 





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