22nd March, 2020 Covid-19 Update.

Hello again from Milan, Italy.

The world is treating Covid-19 as a pandemic and demanding populations be tested; please notice that tests can only be undertaken by hospitals, there’s no such thing as a home kit yet.

Also, there are some doubts about the reliance of such tests which could show false-positive results thus medical professionals are only testing people with serious symptoms who would then get admitted into hospital if considered at risk.

In Milan, we’ve been self-isolating for over two weeks now, with rules getting more restrictive each day; for instance, as of yesterday, only one person of the family can go out at once and that’s only to go to the chemist, the supermarket or to take the dog for a walk. No running, biking or walking outside for leisure.

We must keep one metre distance from one another when we’re queuing to get into either the chemist or the supermarket and we’re only allowed to be 100 metres away from our place of residence when taking dogs out.

We must have a self-certification document with us every time we go out which states the reason for the outing.

We wear ppf3 masks and nitrogen gloves at all times when we’re outside but they are in short supply.

For some reason my local supermarket has been out of eggs for a while, maybe people are baking lots of cakes, maybe it’s because of the beneficial effects of lysine in eggs, who knows. Toilet paper is available albeit scarce.

Only essential services and businesses are allowed to continue as usual, everything else is shut.

Some people are starting to panic and buying groceries in bulk, calling home-delivery services in order to stock up. This not only forces long queues but also causes supermarkets to run out of fresh products. Less-selfish citizens have to queue up for hours just to get their fair share. I hope the government will put a stop to this by implementing rules on how much food or medicine one is allowed to purchase.

Anyone who doesn’t comply with the rules, e.g., by going out for a stroll, will get a 500 Euro fine. There are police and army cars everywhere. City parks that have fences are closed to the public until, at present, the 3rd of April.

Public transports are working, with restrictions, but they are operative.

We still have ventilators for everyone and we are NOT, I repeat, NOT choosing who to treat and who not to treat. Everyone affected gets treatment. We’re isolating in order for this to be able to continue by not overwhelming our hospitals and allowing people to recover.

Our Free National Health Service is arguably one of the best in the world — although our taxes are also extremely high so calling it free might be incorrect — Health-care workers are exhausted, working 24/7 to deal with the emergency. Supermarket and chemist’s workers are also working non-stop and putting themselves and their families at risk by doing so. Please be polite, grateful and understanding.

It is reported that most deaths, and we’re having many of them, are elderly people with pre-existing conditions yet, it has to be said that, notwithstanding all the precautionary measures we’re taking, numbers continue to rise.

You may check for yourself at this link which is updated daily: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries

Please keep calm but please keep safe.

Covid-19 My personal experience of every-day life in Milan, Italy, and summary of Italian News translated into English. Hope you enjoy and find it helpful and informative (I’ll try my best).

Milan, Italy, 13th of March, 2020.  

Positive cases n. 14.955; Deaths: n. 1.266; Recovered: n.1.439. 

I believe that although we’re only at the beginning of this pandemic we’ve already had some good news coming our ways. 

My mother’s eighty-two and lives across the hall from me so I understand how difficult this can be for the most vulnerable but it’s my belief that with the proper information and prevention we can ALL be safe.  

As I’m living in the epicentre of the western world epidemic and have the luck of speaking both English and Italian, I can easily translate the Italian News thus making it more accessible to English speaking people.  

I will also try to report on every-day life in Milan with the purpose to show that life goes on as usual albeit with a few adjustments due to the health situation 🙂  

My advice? Act as if Covid-19 were already a national emergency and act accordingly.  

Here in Milan, our hospitals, all over the country, are currently using “Tocilizumab” which has been proven to speed up recovery of patients on respirators/ventilators. Its typical use is for rheumatoid arthritis but at the Cotugno hospital of Naples, Italy, MD. Paolo Ascierto, president of the Melanoma Foundation and head of the Oncology, Immune therapy and Innovative therapies of the National Institute for Tumours, IRCCS Pascale, has said it’s proving very effective in treating Covid-19 pneumonia on a off-label basis, i.e., not for the illness it is usually prescribed for (Rheumatoid Arthritis), with great results. The pharmaceutical company Roche supplies it free of charge.  

Germany is distributing test kits all over Europe, once we have more access to tests things will improve exponentially. Meanwhile self-isolate, do not visit with family and friends, do not go to crowded places.  

The virus might prove to be air transmitted which would mean it would have the potential to travel EVERYWHERE so start protecting yourselves and your loved ones ahead of time.  

Right now, in Italy, we’re not allowed to leave our homes apart from going to work (by either car or public transport), going to the supermarkets and chemists or to take our pets out. City parks are also off-limits.  

The above mention activities we are still allowed to engage in, must only be undertaken if absolutely necessary, on our own, wearing ppf3 masks and nitrogen gloves and by carrying a self-declaration document that attests and justifies our movements. This is good because it’ll halt the spreading of the virus and allow both patients to recover and medical staff to deal with the emergency before becoming overwhelmed.  

There’s no food shortage as goods are allowed to move freely and supermarkets receive fresh products daily hence no need to panic.  

The only items which are proving difficult to find are disinfectants, especially alcohol-based ones, nitrogen gloves and ppf3 masks so now it’s a good time to stock up on them together with disposable tissues and paper towels.  

Also, items like fresh milk, fruit and vegetables are harder to find at the weekend when more people go to the supermarket hence, whenever possible, we try to shop during the week days. 

Those who are able to work from home (smart work), are encouraged to do so while those who have no other option but going into their usual places of work – think doctors, nurses, cashiers, etc., – will be sent home the minute there’s a single case of infection in the work environment in order to self-isolate (quarantine is not the correct wording as it means forty days), for a fortnight to make sure they don’t develop the symptoms and spread the virus further.  

Obviously, all of this has dire consequences on the economy but right now it seems the most sensible option and I hope all countries will soon implement the same measures; the sooner the better.  

This is what’s wrong with the email sent out by condescending Theresa May:

Silly Walk Off a Cliff, by Barry Blitt The New Yorker

Subject: Update for EU citizens living in the UK

Subject: UPDATE FOR UK CITIZENS LIVING IN THE EU AND EU CITIZENS LIVING IN THE UK

From: hocommunications@communications.homeoffice.gov.uk

Date: Monday, 11 December 2017, 19:44:31 CET

Dear Alecs

(THERE’S NO COMMA WHICH IMPLIES THAT I AM THE PRIME MINISTER OF THE UK. EDITOR’S NOTE).

As Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, I am proud that more than three million EU citizens have chosen to make your homes and livelihoods here in our country.

AS PRIME MINISTER OF THE UNITED KINGDOM, I AM PROUD THAT MORE THAN THREE MILLION EU CITIZENS HAVE CHOSEN TO MAKE THEIR HOMES AND LIVELIHOODS IN THIS COUNTRY.

I greatly value the depth of the contributions you make – enriching every part of our  economy, our society, our culture and our national life.

I GREATLY VALUE THE DEPTH OF THE CONTRIBUTIONS WE BOTH MAKE – ENRICHING EVERY PART OF THIS ECONOMY, THIS SOCIETY, CULTURE AND NATIONAL LIFE (should simply be national life, no pronoun. Editor’s note).

I know our country would be poorer if you left and I want you to stay.

I KNOW THIS COUNTRY WOULD BE POORER WITHOUT YOU AND IT’S A GOOD THING THAT YOU ARE HERE. (UNLESS IT’S A LOVE LETTER IN DISGUISE, EDITOR’S NOTE).

So from the very beginning of the UK’s negotiations to leave the European Union I have

consistently said that protecting your rights has been my first priority.

SO FROM THE VERY BEGINNING OF THE UK’s NEGOTIATIONS TO LEAVE THE EUROPEAN UNION WE HAVE CONSISTENTLY SAID THAT PROTECTING EU NATIONAL RIGHTS IN THE UK AND UK NATIONAL RIGHTS IN THE EU HAS BEEN OUR FIRST PRIORITY.

You made your decision to live here without any expectation that the UK would leave the EU. So I have said that I want you to be able carry on living your lives as before.

Having made the decision to live in the U.K. without any expectation that the UK would leave the EU, it is paramount for EU citizens living in the UK to be able to carry on living their lives as before.

But I know that on an issue of such significance for you and your families, there has been an underlying anxiety which could only be addressed when the fine details of some very complex and technical issues had been worked through and the foundations for a formal agreement secured.

But I know that on an issue of such significance for EU citizens and their families settled in the U.K., there has been an underlying anxiety which could only be addressed when the fine details of some very complex and technical issues had been worked through and the foundations for a formal agreement secured.

So I am delighted that in concluding the first phase of the negotiations that is exactly what we have achieved.

So I am delighted that in concluding the first phase of the negotiations that is exactly what WE have BOTH achieved.

The details are set out in the Joint Report on progress published on Friday by the UK government and the European Commission.

When we leave the European Union, you will have your rights written into UK law. This will be done through the Withdrawal Agreement and Implementation Bill which we will bring forward after we have completed negotiations on the Withdrawal Agreement itself.

When WE leave the European Union, WE will both retain OUR rights as written into the UK law.

This will be done through the Withdrawal Agreement and Implementation Bill which WE will bring forward after WE have completed negotiations on the Withdrawal Agreement itself.

Your rights will then be enforced by UK courts. Where appropriate, our courts will pay due regard to relevant ECJ case law, and we have also agreed that for a period of eight years – where existing case law is not clear – our courts will be able to choose to ask the ECJ for an interpretation prior to reaching their own decision. So as we take back control of our laws, you can be confident not only that your rights will be protected in our courts, but that there will be a consistent interpretation of these rights in the UK and in the European Union.

OUR rights will then be enforced by UK courts AND EU COURTS. Where appropriate, THESE courts will pay due regard to relevant ECJ case law, and WE have also agreed that for a period of eight years – where existing case law ARE not clear – THESE COURTS will be able to choose to ask the European Court of Justice (ECJ), for an interpretation prior to reaching THE DECISION. So as WE take back control of OUR courts, but that there will be a consistent interpretation of RIGHTS BOTH IN THE UK AND IN THE EUROPEAN UNION.

We have agreed with the European Commission that we will introduce a new settled status scheme under UK law for EU citizens and their family members, covered by the Withdrawal Agreement.

WE have agreed with the European Commission that TOGETHER WE will introduce a new settled status scheme under UK law for EU citizens and their family members, covered by the Withdrawal Agreement AND A NEW SETTLED STATUS SCHEME UNDER EU LAW FOR UK CITIZENS AND THEIR FAMILY MEMBERS, ALSO COVERED BY THE WITHDRAWAL AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE UK AND THE EU.

If you already have five years of continuous residence in the UK at the point we leave the EU – on 29 March 2019 – you will be eligible for settled status. And if you have been here for less than five years you will be able to stay until you have reached the five year threshold.

ANYONE WHO HAS ALREADY HAD FIVE YEARS OF CONTINUOUS RESIDENCE IN THE UK AT THE POINT OF THE UK LEAVING THE EU – ON 29 MARCH 2019 – WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR SETTLED STATUS. ANYONE WHO HAS BEEN IN THE UK FOR LESS THAN FIVE YEARS WILL BE ABLE TO CONTINUE LIVING IN THE UK UNTIL THEY WILL HAVE REACHED THE FIVE YEAR THRESHOLD.

As a result of the agreement we have reached in the negotiations, with settled status, your close family members will be free to join you here in the UK after we have left the EU. This includes existing spouses, unmarried partners, children, dependent parents and grandparents, as well as children born or adopted outside of the UK after 29 March 2019.

AS A RESULT OF THE AGREEMENT OUR COUNTRIES HAVE REACHED IN THE NEGOTIATIONS, WITH SETTLED STATUS, CLOSE FAMILY MEMBERS WILL BE FREE TO JOIN THEIR FAMILIES IN THE UK AND IN THE EU ONCE THE UK HAS LEFT THE EU. THIS INCLUDES EXISTING SPOUSES, UNMARRIED PARTNERS, CHILDREN, DEPENDENT PARENTS AND GRANDPARENTS, AS WELL AS CHILDREN BORN OR ADOPTED OUTSIDE OF THE UK OR OUTSIDE OF THE EU AFTER 29 MARCH 2019.

Your healthcare rights, pension and other benefit provisions will remain the same as they are today. This means that those of you who have paid into the UK system – and indeed UK nationals who have paid into the system of an EU Member State – can benefit from what you have put in and continue to benefit from existing co-ordination rules for future contributions.

THE HEALTHCARE RIGHTS, PENSION AND OTHER BENEFIT PROVISIONS WILL REMAIN THE SAME AS THEY ARE TODAY. THIS MEANS THAT THOSE WHO HAVE PAID INTO THE UK SYSTEM AND THOSE WHO HAVE PAID INTO THE EU SYSTEM CAN BENEFIT FROM WHAT THEY HAVE PUT IN AND CONTINUE TO BENEFIT FROM EXISTING CO-ORDINATION RULES FOR FUTURE CONTRIBUTIONS.

We have also agreed to protect the rights of those who are in a cross-border situation at the point of our withdrawal and entitled to a UK European Health Insurance Card. This includes, for example, tourists for the duration of their stay, students for the duration of their course and UK nationals resident in another EU Member State.

AN AGREEMENT HAS BEEN REACHED TO PROTECT THE RIGHTS OF THOSE WHO ARE IN A CROSS-BORDER SITUATION, BOTH IN THE UK AND IN THE EU, AT THE POINT OF THE UK WITHDRAWAL AND ENTITLED TO A UK EUROPEAN HEALTH INSURANCE CARD. THIS INCLUDES, FOR EXAMPLE, TOURISTS FOR THE DURATION OF THEIR STAY, STUDENTS FOR THE DURATION OF THEIR COURSES AND UK AND EU NATIONALS RESIDENT IN ANOTHER EU MEMBER STATE.

The agreement we have reached includes reciprocal rules to protect existing decisions to

recognise professional qualifications – for example for doctors and architects. And it also enables you to be absent from the UK for up to five years without losing your settled status – more than double the period allowed under current EU law.

THE REACHED AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE EU AND THE UK INCLUDES RECIPROCAL RULES TO PROTECT EXISTING DECISIONS TO RECOGNISE PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS – FOR EXAMPLE THOSE SUCH AS DOCTORS AND ARCHITECTS. AND IT ALSO ENABLES BOTH EU AND UK NATIONALS TO BE ABSENT FROM EITHER THE UK OR THE EU – AS THE CASE MAY BE – FOR UP TO FIVE YEARS WITHOUT LOSING THEIR SETTLED STATUS – MORE THAN DOUBLE THE PERIOD CURRENTLY ALLOWED UNDER EU LAW ALONE.

There will be a transparent, smooth and streamlined process to enable you to apply for settled status from the second half of next year. It will cost no more than applying for a passport. And if you already have a valid permanent resident document you will be able to have your status converted to settled status free of charge.

THERE WILL BE A TRANSPARENT, SMOOTH AND STREAMLINED PROCESS TO ENABLE EU AND UK NATIONALS TO APPLY FOR SETTLED STATUS FROM THE SECOND HALF OF NEXT YEAR. IT WILL COST NO MORE THAN APPLYING FOR A PASSPORT. AND IF THEY ALREADY HAVE A VALID PERMANENT RESIDENT DOCUMENT, THEY WILL BE ABLE TO HAVE THEIR STATUS CONVERTED TO SETTLED STATUS FREE OF CHARGE. THIS APPLIES BOTH TO EU NATIONALS LIVING IN THE UK AND TO UK NATIONALS LIVING IN THE EU.

We are also working closely with Switzerland and EEA Member States to ensure their citizens in the UK also benefit from these arrangements.

BOTH THE EU AND THE UK ARE ALSO CLOSELY WORKING WITH SWITZERLAND AND EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AREA (EEA) MEMBER STATES TO ENSURE THOSE CITIZENS LIVING IN THE UK OR IN THE EU ALSO BENEFIT FROM THE ABOVE MENTIONED ARRANGEMENTS.

I have spent many hours discussing these issues with all of the other 27 EU leaders over the last eighteen months as well as with President Juncker, President Tusk and the EU’s Chief Negotiator Michel Barnier. I am confident that when the European Council meets later this week it will agree to proceed on this basis. And I will do everything I can to ensure that we do.

MANY HOURS HAVE BEEN SPENT DISCUSSING THESE ISSUES WITH ALL OF THE TWENTY-SEVEN EU LEADERS OVER THE LAST EIGHTEEN MONTHS AS WELL AS PRESIDENT JUNCKER, PRESIDENT TUSK AND THE EU’S CHIEF NEGOTIOATOR MICHEL BARNIER

So right now, you do not have to do anything at all. You can look forward, safe in the knowledge that there is now a detailed agreement on the table in which the UK and the EU have set out how we intend to preserve your rights – as well as the rights of UK nationals living in EU countries. For we have ensured that these negotiations put people first. That is what I promised to do and that is what I will continue to do at every stage of this process.

SO RIGHT NOW, THERE IS NOTHING ANY OF US NEED TO DO AT ALL. WE CAN LOOK FORWARD, SAFE IN THE KNOWLEDGE THAT THERE IS NOW A DETAILED AGREEMENT ON THE TABLE IN WHICH THE EU AND THE UK HAV SET OUT HOW THEY INTEND TO PRESERVE EU AND UK CITIZENS’ RIGHTS. IT HAS BEEN ENSURED THAT SUCH NEGOTIATIONS WOULD PUT PEOPLE FIRST. SUCH IS THE AIM WE ARE ENSURING TO ACHIEVE THROUGHOUT EVERY STAGE OF THE PROCESS.

I wish you and all your families a great Christmas and a very happy New Year.

I WISH EVERYONE A GREAT CHRISTMAS AND A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR.

Yours sincerely

Yours sincerely,

Theresa May, Prime Minister

Why I No Longer Support Israel

Today I’m sharing a beautiful and informative article written by Mr Herb Silverman on the Huffington Post that I believe many will appreciate and enjoy reading…

Human-rights from the perspective and expertise of an American citizen of Jewish origin.

I couldn’t agree more with Mr. Silverman; in fact Israel has been on my Countries-Not-To-Visit list for a while (should anyone wonder, I’m neither Jewish nor Palestinian).

Shame Mr Netanyahu! You certainly do not deserve having been re-elected.

Please click on the link below to go to the original post:

Why I No Longer Support Israel

#MeToo – Gone too far.

In this post I am replying to an article I saw published on Elephant Journal entitled: “Dear Men: if you answer YES to any of these questions, you may be the reason someone else says, Me, Too.”

I am not anti-feminist, in fact I am a strong supporter of women’s rights but too much is too much. Although I enjoyed reading the above mentioned article and found a lot of truth in it, I would like to point out where, in my opinion, this #MeToo movement is taking things too far.

Here’s my take on the author’s questions; both from personal experience, i.e., similar or same experiences that have happened to me, and from my point of view:

Below, the questions raised in the article and my answers to them:

” Have you ever touched a person without his/her express consent?”

Well, I’ve been touched many times without my consent but no big deal, usually a firm WTF ends the unwanted attention.

“Have you ever asked a woman why she wasn’t smiling or told her she’d look better if she smiled?”

OK, this happens a lot and I admit that it is extremely annoying — especially if one’s cat has just died — for it portraits the nasty stereotype that women should just smile and open their legs, no matter what. So Kudos Here to the author!
“Have you ever sent an unsolicited message commenting on a stranger’s looks?”

Very annoying but easily dismissed.
“Have you ever catcalled another person?”

Hello! I grew up in Italy. is this a joke? Daily, of course. It’s harmless and might even make one smile as she/he walks away.
“Have you ever made an inappropriate sexual joke?”

Better an inappropriate sexual joke than a racist, anti-Semitic one. Just don’t laugh — lest you find it funny — and look at the person with a long, blank stare instead.
“Have you ever shown your genitals to someone without their express request? This could be in person or by message. (If you’ve ever sent an unsolicited d*ck pic, this is you.)”

I was seventeen, it was late evening in Winter, I was walking down a very dark, narrow street in London when, pushed against a brick wall, really close to me, a guy opened his raincoat and flashed me. Bit of a shock but I walked on unharmed. Much worse that time in Italy when the same thing happened — albeit in broad day light — and the guy proceeded to show me what looked like — to my very quick glance — a cut-off penis on a piece of cardboard. Walked away more quickly than in the instance above and remained — to this day — rather puzzled but again nothing to keep me up at night.
“Have you ever flirted with or made sexual advances to a person who could be considered subordinate to you in a professional situation?”

Oh, please, of course they have. Most of them if they had a chance. Perhaps to the secretary with the fake boobs, the short skirt, high heels and fake lips? Plain Jane, I assume, was spared the un-wanted attention and the huge amount of work that it took to keep them at bay while keeping the job. I am not contradicting myself here. Let’s not forget that just as (most) women have an instinctive protective nature, (most) men have an instinctive urge to spread their semen to populate the World. Some things are just in the genes and it takes a very evolved person to correct that in themselves.
“Have you ever laughed at jokes about rape or assault?”

I guess things like Trump saying, “they want to be pussy-grabbed.” Bad taste is bad taste. Without action on intent it isn’t illegal.
“Have you ever put your hands on a man/woman without their permission while dancing in a club or bar?”

For real?! Does the author live in a Mormon community?!?!
“Have you ever had sex with a person who was inebriated and, therefore, incapable of providing consent?”

Well, if you have, that’s RAPE. (Finally a decent — no pun intended — question).
“Have you ever continued to touch someone who said no?”

Of course they have, sometimes it takes a bit more effort to push them away but, as long as the final result IS to push them away, again, not much harm done. Life’s a bitch; assertiveness is a daily constant, not just physically but — even more difficult to realize — emotionally too.
“Have you ever made repeated sexual advances to someone who has said no?”

Well then you are a resilient son of a bitch who, I hope, got punched in the nose and now feels like a total idiot – that you are – yet, if your “repeated” sexual advances were successfully aborted, there’s no legal case there either.
Why am I, a woman and a feminist writing this? Because I have had most of the experiences described above — and much, much worse — through the course of my life thus, I can make the difference between sexual harassment and idiocy.

Also, I am no celebrity looking for publicity (thank god), and I’m smart enough to acknowledge that if I walk around scantily dressed and acting provocatively I might be sending out “wrong” signals.
A final example. In my late teens, at a casting, the guy took me to his office and asked me to perform a fellatio on him. I told him he was disgusting, walked away an enrolled in university. Personal choices…
Let’s cut the average bloke some slack and concentrate on real sexual offenders, of which there are many, in varied, disgusting forms. Shall we?

Compulsive Positive Thinking (CPT) The New Creed

WOH…Don’t you throw your negative energy at me!

l’m neither a psychologist nor a psychiatric (who must be immune to it or else are not superficial and selfish arseholes).

l’ll only talk bullshit as, you see, l’ve been brain-washed by Compulsive Positive Thinking (CPT), which–by the way– goes a long way to keep lay people in their places to the benefit of those in power.

In fact, in this Fear-Based Society, be scared, be very scared of the smallest negative thought for its consequences will be but certain catastrophe.

I can vouch for this by the multitude of people who are living horrible lives thanks to my negative opinions of them. If only…

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for mindfulness but all within limits.

Imagine, if you will, someone like Mother Theresa telling the leprechauns she dedicated her life work to, to stop whining; to stop suffering; that their negative thinking had caused their illnesses.different peopleYeah, maybe, perhaps…who knows for sure.

Do you?

But the real question is: Where is your heart? your compassion? your empathy?

Countless other examples could be made which would mean nothing unless one was walking in the other person’s shoes in this dualist world we ALL live in.

Self Love & Acceptance ~ Awakening to Yourself

Brilliant and inspiring piece, everyone should read, by the lovely Ms Lisa Colburn 🙂

Conscious Healings ~ Metaphysical Blog Providing Intuitive Spiritual Guidance

There has been a common theme lately with folks that I have been encountering, either in my personal life or with my healing work. After taking a few weeks off article writing, unsure of where to go next with things, this topic jumped out to me and I knew right away it was something that needed to be discussed. As an intuitive and empath, I can feel the energy of the collective, which is very different than an individual energy. Many people can feel this energy and are tuned in, but do not realize it is far greater than just their own feelings. It is far more powerful and the vibration feels like it literally extends through the entire earth and into our core, connecting is to all souls and the Universe. This often happens when many people begin to feel similarly, at the same time or are dealing with…

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