55 Days in a Lockdown

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Happy Mother’s Day to our moms, Susan and Linda! We miss you both and wish that we could celebrate this day with y’all.

Today is our last day in a lockdown that has lasted eight weeks in France due to COVID-19. During the lockdown, we had to follow intense regulations or risk being fined. The French government provided clear and constant communication throughout the lockdown and we now know what to expect when the restrictions are lifted on Monday, 11 May.

The French government announced that all départements, or regions, would be classified as red or green. Lyon, in the “69” or Rhône – Lyon département, has been classified as green in the final version of the map. The classification was based on three health indicators: circulation of the virus, hospital capacity, and the virus testing capability in each area.

Map of Lyon broken out by red and green zones

The past eight weeks were difficult in many ways, but we can finally see light at the end of the tunnel. Here’s what we can expect life to look like starting tomorrow.

Post Lockdown Life:

  • A signed letter, or attestation, is no longer required to leave our apartment
  • The 1km radius we have been restricted to is no longer applicable; we can now travel in a 100km radius
  • Outdoor activities, like exercise, are no longer restricted to one hour a day
  • A mask will be required for all public transportation and many shops
  • Bars and restaurants will remain closed until June
  • Parks will slowly start to open up (Parc de la Tête d’Or opens Wednesday!)
  • Shops will start to open
100km radius from Lyon

What this looks like for us:

  • We will be wearing masks most of the time. I am part of an Expat group on Facebook and was able to purchase washable masks from someone making them right down the street
  • We will say goodbye to our AirBnB that we’ve lived in for ten weeks and will rent an apartment
  • We can access our shipping container. It has been in Lyon for about a month, but we can’t access it until we have an apartment
  • Jordan will start back to work at the end of May and will work 2 days/week. At the end of June, we expect that he will be back to work full time
  • We can start exploring! The French Alps are close and we can hopefully find some hikes to go on (while keeping our distance from others)
  • We can establish residency once we have an apartment. We aren’t sure what international travel will look like in the future, but having our French residency will make it easier to travel than our U.S. passports and French visa alone.
My mask – am I wearing it right? I promise I’m smiling underneath!

The French government has made it clear that these rules can change and there are rumors that they might try a “stop-and-go” lockdown. For this reason, we are making it a requirement to have a balcony in our new apartment so that we don’t feel as “stuck” as we have felt in our current AirBnB.

This has not been the expected start to our adventure, but it’s been an adventure nonetheless! There may not be any planes or trains anytime soon… just the Shanes hanging out in Lyon (and that’s ok with us!). We aren’t certain what the future looks like, but I will continue to share our experience while we are here. We are still going to make our time in France the best experience possible!

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6 thoughts on “55 Days in a Lockdown

  1. Glad things are opening up. Here in Tennessee almost everything is open with restrictions. We both got our hair cut this past week! We even ate in a restaurant! Church is still online, but that is the bishop’s ruling. Once it is seen how opening things up affects cases, the churches will open too. We have 4 active cases of covid here in Sullivan County. It has been that way for weeks. Hospitals are empty, staff has ben laid off. Hindsight is 20-20, but this all should have been handled locally instead of at a state level. Vast majority of cases have occurred in Nashville and Memphis.
    Hope things get back to what you expected soon and you find a nice apartment! Happy Mother’s Day to both of you as well – since you both have mothers! Nancy

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