By clothing-bag, 09/07/2022
Algarabía, Purchases and Covid-19: December arrived in Caracas the most Recent
Lunes. 29 de noviembre de 2021. Santiago de León de Caracas.
The cheerful sound of the bagpipe runs through Caracas, waking it from a long lethargy.Six hundred fifteen days have passed since March 2020 and the announcement of the first spread of COVID-19 in Venezuela.Little more than 20 silent months in the capital, of streets and empty avenues, without traffic to complain.An approximate fourteen thousand six hundred and quarantine hours.
Now the Boulevard de Sabana Grande is a long multicolored and bustle stretch that mixes with some aromas.Just made bread, artisanal sweets and incense.The sticky melody of "Amparito" of the Gaitero Maracaibo 15 group is repeated in each corner.The Buhoneros have returned to Sabana;They are installed with their street stalls and offer from clothes to toys at dollarized prices.They wrinkle their frown when they are paid in Bolívares, the devalued official Venezuelan currency.
During the first year of Pandemia, Caracas remained paralyzed by fear of COVID-19 and quarantine restrictions.The establishments worked halfway in the most important commercial areas of the city and closed the doors after two in the afternoon.
This time, stores open until seven at night.In the showcases, decorated with garlands, they hang offers with reduced prices up to 40%.Hundreds of people walk, enter and leave the premises, observe and ask for the costs.The circulation of foreign currencies on the street is more evident than in 2019 and 2020.
«Bolívares no.I accept dollars, euros and even pesos, ”says a doll vessel.Others receive the national currency with reluctance, calculated based on the daily contribution of the US dollar;The excuse is the hyperinflation to which the country has been plunged for four years: the costs go up every day while the Bolívar continues to lose the value.
In October, Tamara Herrera, director and co -founder of the Financial Synthesis firm, would have warned that Venezuela would end the year with inflation close to 1,000 %.
In Venezuela, 433,208 infected with Coronavirus since March of the previous year are counted.However, several passersby have forgotten that the mask must cover the lips and nose: they walk with their face discovered, very close to each other.Christmas shopping fever gradually begins to appear.It arises slowly in the streets and businesses, fed by the commercial movement.
Currently, only 36.28 % of Venezuelans have both doses of the vaccine, according to data from the National Hospitals COVID-19.Even so, president Nicolás Maduro decreed flexibility of quarantine from November 1 to December 31.
The country is going through the third wave of infections, which worries the Venezuelan Society of Infectology;But it seems not to interest the Caracas who continue to travel the sidewalks and handle on highways, ignoring the concept of biosafety that has been repeated in networks and signs.
Effect Cocuyo took a tour in different parts of Caracas and documented the final days of November, in a city that seems to open the eyes after a nap, mobilized by the flexibility decree issued by the Government.Avenues come alive.The COVID-19 has not disappeared, it is only overshadowed by the arrival of December.
Comienza diciembre y se nota
Plaza Venezuela and Sabana Grande, in the Libertador municipality, are two businesses of shops.During the first years of the new century they were crowded with informal vendors that barely left room to walk.However, more than a decade ago they were removed from the Boulevard and relocated in the center of the Manuelita Sáenz communal economy, located between Sabana Grande and Chacaito.
For November 29, 2021 there are dozens of improvised positions on the sides of the road.They look at them with curiosity, remembering old days.Watches and blouses stamped in five dollars are offered, two -fantasy fantasy necklaces, tenteres with ten stripes.Teenagers hold Jean pants on their heads and shout prices, raising the voice over Pillopo's songs.
It is difficult to ignore the avalanche of toys.A doll, imitation of Mattel Barbie, costs 5 to 8 dollars that can be canceled in cash or change in bolivars.Hulk stuffed animals, costumes, carts, skateboards, assembly blocks and campaign stores are also promoted.December begins and shows.
«Right now this is going to start turning on.People have not completely left;Sales are relaxed, but much better than last year.We expect a crowd for fifteen week, ”said a stamped watches and caps merchant.
In the City Market center there is a stir.It is a closed building where it usually is hot and technological products are sold.What is bought most are phones, headphones and bugles.There are walking to the sound of the great coquivacoa, dodging those who stop in the stained glass windows to look.Some with the mask in the chin.
Negocios que se recuperan
The bagpipes sound one behind another in the shoe stores, bakeries and clothing stores and accessories in general.The managers and dependents cover the nostrils and the mouth with disposable masks, but do not demand it from customers for fear of frightening them.
Elbulevar de Chacaíto connects with that of Sabana Grande, in the center-east of Caracas.It is another section full of informal positions;There the shops work until five in the afternoon.The owners recall the radical quarantine decreed by the government the previous year, when in a month there were two weeks of flexible mobility days and another two weeks with radical norms in which business could not work after noon.
Some denounce that they had to pay $ 20 per week to the Caracas Police or Bolivarian National Police (PNB) to let them work by closed doors.
«We have had an increase of 60 % of sales, compared to 2020, only in November.We are optimistic, ”said the person in charge of a shoe store.
In the 1.8 kilometers that separate Chacaíto de Chacao, the recent advertising fences of new restaurants, applications and Christmas exhibitions multiply.Traffic is increasing when approaching the Sambil Shopping Center.An extensive row of colorful cars fill the gray smoke air and impatient drivers press the horn insistently.
Anyone could infer that the Venezuelan fuel crisis has come to an end.However, long lines in gas stations subsidized by the government continue.The bottling of Francisco de Miranda Avenue is repeated in the rest of the road arteries of Caracas.
Dolarizados y sin billetes
On December 16 Spiderman No Way Home in Venezuela and the superhero fans wait in long lines to acquire the tickets in the presale, at the cinex of the Sambil.The place overflows with life and the distant and short echo of the I will play on foot leaves one of the clothing stores.Adults sale the bagpipe while running through the hall.Animated conversations can also be heard: the union of twenty high and clear voices.
At noon, the fourth floor fair overflows with people looking for where to sit.There the piano man choir sounds, Billy Joel's version.A scene is repeated in all restaurants and food stalls: although prices are dollarized, none seems to have a change to return to customers.
They do not circulate low denomination and few pay by debit card, so they are removed.Due to the low influx of diners, no one even thinks of the famous anticovid traffic light.The initiative, promoted by the Government, seems not to have penetrated in the shopping centers.Restaurants that work inside do not request vaccination card and do not ask consumers to use the cappes.
The traffic light is an application that serves to restrict entry to people who are not vaccinated.To date, not only has not worked as expected, but is consciously ignored in commercial sites.
Un mediodía solitario en Las Mercedes
Far from the excitement of the center-east (from Chacao, Chacaito, Sabana Grande and Plaza Venezuela) Las Mercedes is trapped in a silence at one o'clock on Monday afternoon.It is the area with restaurants, bars and nightclubs in the north of the Baruta municipality.
In its 93 hectares, life takes place quietly and without shocks.The mesoneros yawn inside some premises.There are no bagpipes here, only boring managers that evoke better times: other years where corporate lunches were organized and the tables were filled seven days a week, between November and December.
"This is not even for what it was before and we believe that it will remain like this for a long time," says one of the Castañuela workers, where marine decorations are left over, just like the free tables.When the anticovid traffic light is mentioned, the woman wrinkles her nose.
They have used the mobile application, although it is not very sure that it really works.The rest of the restaurants around are maintained under the same premise.
Tuesday.November 30, 2021. Santiago de León de Caracas.
In Caracas, approximately four million inhabitants distributed in five municipalities coexist.When someone puts a foot in the Caracas center, precisely in the tumultuous market of the Hoyada, I could easily believe that half of the city has gathered here.
The bagpipe resonates among the numerous positions they offer from pots to imported clothes at very low prices.It is as if they had moved music from the center-east, about five kilometers, but at a higher volume.The cardinals of success intermingle with a sauce that rumbles.The noise of traffic of traffic impossible to overcome stun.The little ones swarm portodos sides and the masks of the faces are ripped, tired by the heat of noon.
It is the end of the month and the workers have already charged their salary, which excites the informal ones.Hundreds and hundreds of people travel at a frantic, chaotic and unequal step in different directions.It is easy to stumble if you are not alert.It smells like sweat and newly made soup.
There is not too much space for distancing.Several walk from others, under a severe sun and with the cappes under the nose.
A young man with a face full of black dust sells a soup in white containers that washes inside a bucket, full of gray water.It is a color very similar to that of the broth, which costs a dollar in cash and takes out of a huge red tonoce.At least five men gather around him, sipping at a fast pace.
The COVID-19 variant called omicron was detected in two countries of the American continent, as confirmed by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).But that does not worry the buyers of the Cruz Verde Mercado de la Hoyada.Francisco Torres lifts an eyebrow when he hears that there are registered cases of omicron in Brazil and Canada.
"Don't you suppose after you vaccinate that already hits you softer?" He asks.She is 42 years old and is looking for the Christmas gift of her youngest daughter: a pink tent with princess motifs and a skateboard, which she has found in 20 and 25 dollars, respectively.
El covid «ya no mata»
Ilianis Ubán went from being a fifth grade teacher to give tasks directed at home, near San Bernardino.She then decided that it was more profitable to send to bring stamped lycras from Colombia and sell them in the Hoyada before the end of the year.
«The bonus of my companions does not reach twenty dollars.I can do that on a good day, sitting here, ”she says.According to the National Survey on Living Conditions (Encovi), at least 51.7 % of Venezuelans are self -employed, a product of the economic crisis that plagues the country.
Completely vaccinated since September, Ubán Menea his head from side to side when asked if he is afraid of the Coronavirus.
«The Covid no longer kills, for that they put the vaccine, so that it does not kill you.With this Bululú of people, there must be more than one infected, but if one put on the vaccine you don't have to worry, I imagine.If not, for what? ”She replies naturally.
Around it, ten, twenty, forty, fifty or maybe a hundred people endure the more than 30 degrees of temperature such as, trying to sell padded sweaters, underwear brought from Colombia and cheap perfumes, which cost 1 dollar.In La Hoyada, low denomination tickets pass from here to there in seconds.
La compra de estrenos
At the doors of the Palace of the Academies, in Capitol, some people feel in condition of Calle Aresguardar del SolBlack and clothing for Christmas Eve.
Escar Pinto spent $ 40 on two pants and two blouses for his six -year -old daughter.
There is still food at home but knows that clothes will be more expensive the longer on December 24 and does not want to leave the girl without brand new, as happened a year ago.According to Encovi figures, 79.3% of Venezuelans do not have how to cover the food basket completely.
The influx of people sends when the 7 kilometers that separate Capitol from the Los Próceres Paseo, which seems to wait for the weekend to become a small carnival of bright lights and families wandering away.For now, it is the last day of November and is deserted around three in the afternoon.
Catia no descansa
Wednesday.December 1, 2021. Santiago de León de Caracas
December arrived and in Catia they change reggaeton and meringue for a mixed mix of zulian bagpipes that sound distorted, but that travel the entire main market and the streets adjacent to the Sucre Square station.It is west of the capital, where the excitement is always present.
Catia looks a bit to the Hoyada market, with its mobile clothing stalls brought from other countries and economic prices.There the sale of toys is larger and they shine between clothes and food.
«The Child Jesus also has to use tapping, mom.When my bike brought me, right?
It is charged in cash, but bolivars are also accepted to change.Under the gray clouds of the noon, passers -by withdraw the tapping for a few minutes, before placing it again in place under the distracted gaze of the police, who actually observe with little interest to those who carry their face discovered.
Ventas flojas en ingredientes para hallacas
If there is something that disappoints the merchants of Catia, who listen more than ten times a day the onomatopoeic bagpipes and are already somewhat tired, it is that very few customers buy ingredients to make halces.
«The Venezuelan leaves everything for the last minute.When it is December 20, that pile of people is looking for everything, ”said one of the merchants.
«Not everyone has money this Christmas.Remember that we continue in pandemia, ”says Yeli, a saleswoman who has not managed to get rid of banana leaves for weeks.
Other sites that remain full are the popular markets of Quinta Crespo and Petare, separated by 15 long kilometers, but similar in influx.
Vuelve la música a Caracas
While in 2020 few let music and establishments sound for fear of attracting the attention of police forces, at the end of 2021 the bagpipes flood the city.Without concentrating on the Coronavirus, the Caracas travel the sites that remained lonely during the first year of pandemic.
Caracas sounds again.
It is an excitement that is increasing and that seems to ignore the pandemic.January 2022 will be another story, another rhythm, when flexibility is over and Christmas enthusiasm disappears for 335 more days.