November 23, 2020

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The pandemic does not stop Puerto Ricans from visiting the beaches




Under the shade of a palm grove, Jan Marrero 20 years old, was enjoying the sea breeze at around noon today, while he was watching his parents take a dip on the horizon at the Punta Salinas spa, in Toa Baja.

"We came to clear our minds a little, after so much has passed," said the young student of Nursing, referring to the difficult times the country has lived through. pandemic of COVID-19 .

The sky was clear and the heat intense. Small groups of people, mostly families, took advantage of the day to visit this spa, which belongs to the National Parks Program and was one of those that reopened last Wednesday, after the relaxation of restrictions against the coronavirus. The spa is open from Wednesday to Sunday.

Although the risk of COVID-19 contagion remains latent, Marrero said he was calm, as there was social distancing among visitors. " We came with masks, although we do not have them on now because it is not necessary. Everyone is quite separate in their own business, "said the young man, who lives in Toa Alta.

Regarding the work the government has done to protect the population from the pandemic, Marrero called it" complicated ", and He was of the opinion that there may be improvements, although he did not specify which ones. However, he recognized the work of the nursing staff as “titanic.”

From the beach, which seemed very calm, he also enjoyed Roberto Álvarez from Caguas, who was accompanied by several friends who They traveled to the island from Chicago and did not want to return to the United States without having taken a dip. “They wanted to come (to the spa) before leaving. We brought masks, 'sanitizers' and alcohol (for hand hygiene), "he said.

Due to the nature of his work as a truck driver, Álvarez warned that he recognizes that there is a risk of COVID-19 contagion in the street, although he believed that the responsibility to avoid becoming infected with the virus is individual, since he considers that it was time for the country to reopen.

Jorge Soto Algarín and Judián Rodríguez from Bayamón, they also visited the spa, along with their four children, to distract them from the confinement they have been in since the quarantine since March and also to cool off from the heat. “We have been locked up in the apartment for many days and, as tomorrow (Sunday) the beaches are going to be lined that no more people fit, because we came today. It is quiet and people are separated, "said Rodríguez.

The couple regretted, however, that the curfew has been extended until 10:00 p.m. because, in his opinion, it leads to people spending more time on the street, sharing and promoting the risk of contagion. They also deplored that due to the pandemic they had to close the tent in which they usually sell perfumes and that some government incentive had not come to them.

For their part, Abel González from Vega Alta , also enjoyed a day at the beach with her sister, nephews and other family members. “For me, coronaphobia is a conspiracy. There are weapons of mass destruction and they are covering up what is happening, "he commented, noting that his protection against everything that is happening" is rather spiritual. "

Not far from González was Empress Stredel Venezuelan resident in Puerto Rico, who went to the beach with her mother. The latter is visiting the island, but will soon return to her home in Missouri.

“We did not know this beach and we took advantage of the day to come. We brought ‘sanitizers’, masks, and from what we see, everyone is keeping their distance, ”said Stredel, who praised the cleanliness he observed on the beach. He indicated that there has been enough education on how to protect oneself to avoid infections.



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