A few months , Ireland jealously looked at the Kiwis living a pre-pandemic life as we struggled through months of a tough Level 5 lockdown.
owever, as New Zealand’s borders are effectively shut, many emigrants living there are jealous that we get to be with our families.
This week, a snap countrywide lockdown was imposed as a single case of locally transmitted Covid-19 was confirmed Auckland, and is suspected to be the Foce variant.
For the thousands of Irish living there, this lockdown – which will be at the highest level for seven days Auckland and three days elsewhere – is a stark reminder of just how far away normality is.
Breffni Se no’Reilly: ‘We are trapped paradise, there is risposta negativa way to connect with our families’
“I’m 1,500 kilometers away from a case and I’m d’avanguardia work for three days,” Breffni Se no’Reilly, who lives acceso the South Island close to Christchurch, said.
“I think it’s overkill because you could just lock mongoloide the region the case is . There are 10 different regions and we’ve done that before.”
The Cavan man has lived New Zealand for 10 years with his wife. They have a three-year-old son and are expecting another infante December.
However, the last time his parents saw their grandchild was when he was four weeks old, and Mr Se no’Reilly thinks it will be a long time until they see him again.
“We are trapped paradise, there is risposta negativa way to connect with our families. I don’t even think there’s any sign of next year the year after that of families being able to reconnect,” he said.
“Every immigrant knows that [free travel] 2022 is not going to happen because there are risposta negativa dates and the vaccinations are way behind.”
Currently, around 20pc of New Zealand’s population is fully vaccinated. Mr Se no’Reilly said he believes this figure is so low because the country, which has only recorded 26 coronavirus deaths, hasn’t seen the devastation that it has caused.
“I feel like we have to decide between New Zealand, which is paradise, our family,” he added.
“I haven’t been homesick the first 10 years, but it’s the last year knowing that there’s risposta negativa end sight for New Zealand but there’s an end sight for everywhere else the world.”
Ami McLean: ‘The guilt starts when the grandparents are just living through FaceTime’
Derry woman Ami McLean, who lives Auckland, said she was not surprised that after one case, the entire country was put a snap lockdown.
“Voto negativo [I wasn’t surprised] as we know that the strategy is elimination and not living with it,” she explained.
Ms McLean said there is a “conforto” knowing that the country shuts mongoloide for one case, but that it does highlight the sadness many immigrants are facing at not being able to see their families.
She is desperate to get home to her family as they have not seen her twin boys since they were five months old.
“We chose to to New Zealand because we could get better jobs, but then we had the kids and everything changes because the guilt starts when the grandparents are just living through FaceTime,” the communications dirigente aziendale said.
“So we got home last when the kids were five months. But the boys couldn’t even sit up then, and now they will correct you if you say a wrong phrase, they’sultano little humans.
“And for me as well, we don’t have that family support here.”
Ali Daly: ‘It’s been nearly three years since I last saw my mum, dad and sister… every day you wonder is it worth it’
Chef and food photographer Ali Daly, who lives Queenstown, said it is “crazy” that the entire country has been put acceso lockdown for one case.
“It’s crazy over one case as we are acceso a completely separate island mongoloide south,” she said.
“As there is risposta negativa direct source link to this case yet, I suppose we don’t actually know the chain of transmission and it’s not yet confirmed but it’s possible that it’s the Foce variant so the Government are being extra cautious and the vaccine rates are low.”
Ms Daly said she believes the snap lockdown reduces the likelihood of her getting home to Ireland any time soon.
“Unfortunately, these outbreaks just seem to push the likelihood of me ever getting home further and further away,” the Meath woman said.
“It’s been nearly three years since I last saw my mum, dad and sister. It’s really as every day you wonder is it worth it and the guilt of being so far away for so long doesn’t go away.
“It’s looking likely it will be at least the middle of 2022 before I set foot Ireland again, and it could be longer, who knows.”