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cruisemom42

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  1. We don't really know whether the new virus will behave like the flu virus or not. It is frequently compared to flu in terms of the introduction of a new virus into the population, because it is one of the better recent examples we have. But a large number of the infections long referred to as "the common cold" are also caused by coronaviruses. They circulate around in the population and cause low-level respiratory infections year on year. There's a possibility that the virus causing COVID-19 mutates in a way that takes it in this direction. We already know that a significant number of people infected only have mild disease. It may continue to circulate every year, more or less like a common cold or URI. (An interesting discussion with an infectious disease expert at Johns Hopkins discussing this possibility is here: https://www.statnews.com/2020/02/04/two-scenarios-if-new-coronavirus-isnt-contained/ Note it was written over a month ago so the numbers and global situation are not current. However, the possible scenarios haven't changed.) Alternatively, it does behave like flu and we ultimately control it more or less like flu -- that is, imperfectly, via vaccination and herd immunity -- so we do not continue to have global pandemics (necessitating social distancing, shelter in place, travel cessation, closed ports, quarantines etc.) and we simply end up dealing with this new disease annually. Either way, this doesn't necessarily spell the death of cruising (or travel, or the business of living our lives). It is definitely a pause, though, and I think the uncertainty makes people a little crazy...
  2. Did you book your cruises through HAL? If so, why not call them instead of emailing? If not, have you talked to your TA?
  3. I think the previous poster was thinking July 2020... That said, there is a lot of uncertainty everywhere right now. If things return to some kind of normalcy in Italy in the next few months, it could be that they are able to make up for some lost time (particularly if other ship orders are sidelined due to anticipated slow recovery of other cruise lines). Does MSC use Fincantieri for their ships? Also, how close is your cruise to the expected launch/inauguration? If you are on one of the first 2-3 cruises, you would be more likely to see an impact, IMO.
  4. Same here, from another solo cruiser.
  5. While I don't think you're wrong, I also believe that if companies do that it can scare investors and they are likely to see even more drops in stock value and perhaps create unnecessary panic at a time when we don't need panic.... I have worked in companies that are in the same line of business -- one was publicly traded, one was privately owned -- the two companies have entirely different criteria for how they make (and communicate) decisions.
  6. Bad choice of words, perhaps, but the gist remains the same: Doesn't matter whether the government is Communist, Socialist, or Capitalist, a lot of companies will take any competitive advantage even if, strictly reviewed, it may be somewhat morally shady.
  7. I had to go to the grocery store this morning, and I ended up using a bandana-type scarf and two rubber bands to make a face mask similar to the one shown in the first video here: https://www.lamag.com/citythinkblog/how-to-make-a-face-mask/ It worked pretty well -- only thing is that the rubber bands were a little loose so I had to be careful not to knock off the mask.
  8. Thanks for posting -- rather eerie video. Looks like the setting for the beginning of a horror movie, a la "The Shining" but on a cruise ship...
  9. While my April HAL cruise was canceled, I did bring back a stash of chocolates from my trip to Italy in February. (Yes, I got out of there just in time to dodge a bullet...) Anyway, I have been saving the last two pieces from my chocolate hazelnut stash but I think the time has come...
  10. Sure, but it's a bit hypocritical to point a finger at "Communist" China for having industries that take advantage of a loophole or lax local regulations to have their merchandise labeled as Italian, when American industries also take advantage of what you charmingly call "legal labor codes and practices" in other countries in order to manufacture their goods more cheaply.
  11. Funny how that style of bandana used to bring fear ("This is a stick-up!"). Now we are happy to see people wearing them... Crazy times.
  12. Speaking for myself, I find it interesting how people will zone in on things like this and yet "corrupt" business practices are universal and CERTAINLY are not limited to taking place under Communist regimes. What about all the US companies that produce designer goods under their prestige labels but use cheap labor available in various developing countries -- where workers often toil under abysmal conditions, few safety regulations and for very little pay? These include Apple, Gap, H&M, Nestle, Microsoft and Philip Morris Tobacco among others.
  13. Even if they have no option but to go to the store themselves, they should reduce their risk of exposure and not go every day...
  14. Hotels, ships, planes, buses, etc. can clean things to an excruciating level but it only takes one cough or sneeze from an infected person, with or perhaps without symptoms, to spread the virus. Perhaps people are focused a bit much on rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Transmission of COVID-19 is mainly person-to-person via aerosolized droplets containing the virus. While some studies have shown that the virus can survive for limited amounts of time on some surfaces, I don't believe there have been any proven cases of transmission of the virus in this way. Even if possible, it seems unlikely to be a major source of infection.
  15. I have a HAL cruise on the books for mid-August; a TA with stops in Iceland and Greenland. This cruise is already a "move over" from my canceled April HAL Westerdam cruise around Japan. At the time I thought it was the re-booking should be a long enough time to be safe, but who knows? I will hold off making a decision until final payment is due -- I really want to do the cruise since we are approaching the last season for cruise ship stops in Greenland. I also have a BTB Med cruise on Celebrity in October and another HAL cruise to South America/Antarctica in January 2021. I consider myself neither optimistic nor pessimistic -- I will just keep an eye on things and adjust my plans as needed. (I personally am not among those who feel cruising is "doomed".)
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