Port Vila returning to normal
By Len Garae.
In the same way that the world has been gripped by the deadly impact of the Coronavirus for which the President of America, Joe Biden, paid respect for the total loss of one million American deaths last week, Vanuatu “the happiest place on earth” has also experienced a total lockdown and as is for the crisis to be lifted on July 1, you can feel it that people are already beginning to live the spirit of economic revival.
One day last month, I was sent to the back of Port Vila Market House to “enter” through the gate to get my hands sprayed with sanitiser to allow me to buy greens for my family.
I went back again yesterday and walked in. Everybody walked with no restrictions now that the country is down to Level 1.
All the tables in the Restaurant Wing of the Market were almost full at midday. Certainly, the tide is turning for the better as almost every one I see are not wearing any mask.
While I have not heard the thumb up from the Ministry of Health to unmask, the general observation is that the country is returning to normal soon.
Obviously, job creation is returning with businesses reopening to allow those who have stopped work to return to work soon.
Looking into a somewhat windy Vila Harbour, it is clear that the dancing waves are also missing both local and international sea traffic while waiting for July 1st to arrive.
The Caribbean Royal Cruise has promised to work with Vanuatu Authorities to pave the way to reopen the visits for the tourist liners to arrive with their most missed passengers again.
All the hotels and restaurants and taxi parks are empty without our international visitors.
But the signs are in place as you walk along the Seafront as far as Fatumaru Bay, to know that Port Vila is ready to welcome back the tourists.
Someone said, “The beauty about being ni Vanuatu is that you smile not because of a fat wallet or purse full of cash but, because it feels good to smile with cash or no cash”.
Well, the day is coming on July 1 when the economic wind is bound to fan the positive revival of economic prosperity for the people and the country.