On Monday they open the borders.

The virus has done so many things, most of them bad.

Closing international borders has been one of the oddest results of a virus that can be sneezed across a transatlantic airplane or between lovers walking in a forest.

I cross between France and Switzerland six times a day to get to work and back. At the weekend I often cross into Germany and back a few times to buy cat food and to get a kebab at my favourite Turkish kebab shop.  This has all stopped.

Even the crossings in the forests used by cyclists and hikers and runners every day have been boarded/ bordered up!

232F932D-67C8-42B7-933F-D57D19E1CB78Due to the unfathomable decision of the UK to leave the EU, I reclaimed my Irish heritage, so I could continue to be European. The open borders within  Europe seemed to me a slice of sanity, sophistication and friendliness in an increasingly fractured world.

Then the borders were closed.

It felt like a real war, not against the virus, but against each other. If ever there was a time for the EU to work together, this surely was it. All of the countries working together on health policies, quarantine advise, common lockdown could have been so powerful, but instead each country went their own way.

I dont know which country got it right and which got it wrong, but I do know that closed borders have increased unease and even fear for so many people who were  used to living in this open area that used to seem like it was my extended home.

On Monday they open the borders between France and Switzerland and Germany for everyone. I took some photos of the little closed borders between neighbouring villages and even between neighbouring trees.

I hope I never see them closed again.



7 thoughts on “On Monday they open the borders.

  1. catterel says:

    I remember the first time I crossed the border between France and Germany just after Schengen came into effect, and the wonderful feeling of being able to move freely in the Dreiländereck near Basle and the area closer to me near Lake Constance (Switzerland Germany, Austria and Liechtenstein). Since then, we have learnt to take it all for granted – and now Corona! You are so right in everything you say here – we have all been wondering why Europe at least couldn’t agree on a common policy. And Brexit – unfathomable is the right word.


    • cathysrealcountrygardencom says:

      I struggled to find a suitably diplomatic adjective to describe voting to leave Europe!
      My first teaching job was in Spain in the 80s and that feeling of being free to live and work in Europe has defined me ever since. I hope others get to feel it too!


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