New Zealand. Managed Isolation, Day 13

Friday 13 August 2021 – Auckland.

Quarantine, Day 11, Wednesday.

The room here in Rydges (eighth floor, northwest corner) is pretty quiet, most of the time it sounds and feels like we are the hotel’s only residents. We know there are neighbours and people on the opposite side of the corridor, we have seen them, though we never hear them. I am assuming they do not hear us either.

As our days are not exactly filled with activity we have become excited by the routine of room-service delivered meals and my (our?) ears are tuned to the sound of room service working their way up the corridor to our room, the furthest from the lift. I can hear the gentle knock and the accompanying call of ‘room service’ mixed with the rustle of the paper bags the food is delivered in from quite a few rooms away. The Pavlovian response is to start to move towards the door, unhook and fit the mask and wait to call ‘Thanks’ when our door is knocked. I am waiting for this as I type, it is approaching lunch time.

I am not sure what I would do if we heard the knock coming and it didn’t arrive on our door.

After saying our room is quiet, I found the street noise really loud last night and had trouble getting to sleep, this is the first time it has bothered me and I hope it will be the last.

I had a solo walk this morning, Eleanor wasn’t feeling it, so I went down to the forecourt on my own. I was on my own for the first 15 minutes. It was great, I walked in a figure of 8 rather than round and round. One takes excitement where one can.


The rest of the day was the same as every other day though with added bad day-time telly; reading, music, writing and eating.

Quarantine, Day 12, Thursday.

When I woke this morning and was still in that mild brain-fog stage before full consciousness (pre-coffee) I was unclear if it was Thursday or Friday and whether we had one or two more days to go. This confusion was only cleared when I checked the day on my phone. Time is starting blur, though I am surprised it took so long for that to happen.

Today is day 12 testing and there are some hotel departures this morning, a schedule was left by the lift doors. This means that the forecourt and ramp are closed to exercise for quite some time. I didn’t get to repeat my solo walk on the forecourt this morning which was a shame.


We got called for our final Covid test, the much anticipated day 12 test mid-morning. It was good to get it out of the way. The result from this test will determine whether we get to leave on Saturday or not and I am assuming it will be negative and we’ll be good to go. The test isn’t too painful, a swab up the nose and a good wriggle around for a few seconds, it is irritating more than painful and I always need to sneeze after. The results will be with us before we are let out.


We had our final roof walk at 1:30 which I much appreciated, the roof is the best place to walk and we are only allowed a walk there every second day. We took some selfies, hopefully the last ever masked-up selfie we will take. Sadly I suspect this will not be the case, there feels like an inevitability that the Delta Variant will make it’s way into New Zealand somehow. I just hope we get some ‘freedom’ time beforehand.




I found a photo of us that I (shakily) took just before we left my flat before the move to London. I miss my flat. We were a lot thinner then, and it was only June!


I finished reading another book today, the third I have read in isolation. A novella by J.G. Ballard that is providing some ‘inspiration’ for the short story I have started working on. We have also started watching the first series of ‘My life is Murder’, a light touch detective series set in Melbourne and starring NZer Lucy Lawless (Xena the Warrior Princess), the second series is set in Auckland and has just started on  ‘normal’ TV. It is enjoyable and light and perfect isolation watching.

I have been annoying Eleanor by asking to take photos of her as I am bored, eventually eliciting this response. Oh, well it kept us (me) entertained for a while.


I was experimenting with some movement shots and I think she got a bit sick of shaking her head rapidly.  I fully understand, I would be the same!


I went back to taking photos out of the window as the sun went down, it seemed less likely to respond with two fingers.



Quarantine, Day 13, Friday.

Yay, the penultimate day. One more sleep and we are out of here!

Its mid-evening and I really cannot recall much about the day, it has all been a bit of a blur. There was no outside walking today as there are lots of people departing the hotel, apparently there has been a Covid positive guest who was moved out today as well.

This was not good timing for us as I received my negative test result about 10:30 and Eleanor didn’t get hers until after 4, and that was after ringing three times. It was a very stressful wait, though I was certain it would be negative, which is was. Though having to wait so long was quite unfair.

I finished the Hawkwind book this morning, isolation read number four. It is safe to say I am happy that I managed to get through quite a bit of reading in this very dead 14 days.

We watched TV, ate the required amount of way too much and shared a bottle of pinot gris. I took one final photo out the big window. We had some interesting sunsets, but nothing truly spectacular. Those will come tomorrow when we are gone.


Tomorrow we leave and I might write up my thoughts on the two weeks. I will see how busy things get. I am not going to miss the room (obviously), but it has been OK and we have survived the two weeks in isolation relationship intact. There is no-one else I would want to be stuck in a hotel room, or anywhere else with.

Roll on seeing family, (awkward) hugs and a big walk outside tomorrow.

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Wannabe writer and photographer. Interested in travel and place. From Auckland, New Zealand.