tv Coronavirus BBC News August 14, 2020 9:30pm-10:01pm BST
this is bbc world news, the headlines. thousands of people are protesting in the belarusian capital minsk, to demand the resignation of president alexander lu kashenko after his disputed re—election. protests has been fuelled by accounts of torture from protesters detained earlier in the week. queues are forming at french ports, as britons race to return home after a fourteen day quarantine is imposed on arrivals from france. coronavirus cases have surged in the country in recent days. the wildfire burning near los angeles has started moving away from populated areas, after the winds changed direction. evacuation orders are starting to be lifted, meaning some residents can return to their homes. the united states says it has taken control of four fuel shipments
from iran to venezuela. the justice department said it was the largest seizure of iranian oil ever made by the us authorities. at ten o'clock clive myrie will be here with a full round up of the days news. first, philippa thomas hears from people around the world about their extraordinary experiences during the pandemic and how covid—19 has changed their lives in coronavirus your stories. welcome to coronavirus: your stories, a programme about how covid—19 is changing the lives of people around the world. i'm philippa thomas, and this week we're talking about relationships and the way we think about them.
what the pandemic has done to change the way that we look at each other. later, i'll ask you to imagine that you just met someone, you've been on a few dates, it's looking good and then suddenly it's a lockdown and you have to spend every minute of every day together that's what happened to katie and ryan, a canadian and a brit travelling abroad. we will get the verdict on their lockdown love life in new zealand. first, since covid—19 swept the world, with perhaps we've all realised the importance of relationships, how much we all need to have somebody to love. we've brought together two women who hear about a lot of relationships, the good, the bad and the ugly. since 1997, carolyn hax has been writing her advice column in the washington post, it's now read in more than 200 newspapers in the united states. dating coach didi edet is the founder of lagos
matchmaker. she has been helping single people in nigeria try to find meaningful romance in lockdown. the covid lockdown started in march in nigeria here, and in march, we had a huge spike in people wanting to date so we started something called dating in quarantine which was like an online speed dating, since there was no other way to meet people. and a lot of relationships started from there. that was something that was really positive from the covid. so does that mean for you, didi, single people are more focused on finding someone? yes, they are more focused now because everyone is indoors, there are no social spaces open, and because of the whole social distance, people are forced to be at home, they do take time to get to know people more now. there is no pressure of any physical interaction so you do get to know the person for who they really are.
carolyn hax, you hear about all sorts of situations and if i can ask you about people who are in relationships already, what has pandemic done, what are you hearing about most? i think the pandemic has intensified whatever you have, and so if you are in a relationship that is a little bit suffocating, then you are to the point of desperation now. if you felt a little bit alienate it, then you feel like you never talk. i think people who are together want some space, i think people who are alone want to be together. it'sjust...it's almost like people were frozen exactly where they were when this started, so you have too much of whatever you were frozen with. and you refer to the fact, didi, that it's more about talking, you can't get physical so quickly, so you need to have the skills
to talk to somebody new. yes, and it's making a lot more creative ways to date, people attending concerts online together, they are having the video dates that you sent through to your date, and you get together and have a glass of wine, there are so many creative ways to date that we never thought about until now, so it's been really exciting to see what's been happening with all this. when covid is over and everything goes back to normal, i think a lot of first dates still might happen over video and online, and might not happen as much in restaurants and social spaces anymore. if people are being forced to get to know each other and have conversations at arm's length, and try to get to know each other intellectually, that can't hurt, i think. if you just...it slows things down, and i think one of the markers of a dangerous relationship is that it happens very quickly so this might
actually end up being a benefit in the long run, if people get used to dating more slowly. definitely, that's like the major...the testimonials have had deeper connections, we've had relationships start of and end really quickly. i smile a lot now! right now, the relationships forming have had deeper connections, because there is no physical pressure, you get to know person, you get to see where they live, their living space, you get to see so much about the person before you see them. so this prolonged courtship is definitely in everyone‘s favour when it comes to dating. carolyn hax, you talk about people getting stuck where they are. do you think there is a lot of realisation going on, people finding out things about partners they might have known for a long time? people hearing their partners work's personas, because they're working from home, and they're hearing, overhearing meetings, and they can't believe
that they married somebody who says, "i want to circle back," or i actually got a question from somebody saying her husband often used to come home from work to complain about what was going on. and she's realised through overhearing him that he's the problem, she didn't know whether she should tell him that she has realised in all of the stories he's told from work, that he was the one causing them, and i've seen a lot of people laid off and unemployed all the time, and that's driving the partner crazy because their relationship worked because they were apart 40, 50 hours a week and so it's really been eye—opening for a lot of people. carolyn, we are talking about the stresses of pandemic and lockdown, but have you seen positive takeaways as well, meaningful changes for the better? absolutely.
i think one of the things this whole situation has done is force people to reckon with things that they didn't want to think about, and i almost said this in response to the last question, that sometimes getting bad information about people can be useful anyway. it's painful, but i think when people are realising that they had problems they weren't dealing with, and now they're forced to deal with them, i think people are going in better directions for themselves where possible, and again, i don't want to overstate it because what's going on is terrifying and devastating and financially difficult, but people are really trying, it's a real human sirit test, and people are trying to make something of it. looking at the dark side, or the difficult side, carolyn hax, i've read your column since i moved to the states back in ‘97
and you do often ring alarm bells in your column about situations people are in. yes, and there are people right now in some dangerous situations. on fridays, i do a live online chat, and a woman wrote in from an abusive situation, and she was with her partner, and the lockdown came just as she was about to leave. she had all of her plans, and they alljust washed away suddenly, so she was in this dangerous situation and over several fridays, we were...| say we, because also readers were making suggestions, because we can do that in the live forum, and she ended up connecting with domestic violence support groups and she ended up getting out, but it took weeks, and it was terrifying. i mean, she had options, but they were very limited all of a sudden. and i think this is not uncommon, i think people again,
their safety is in being able to circulate, being able to get away, being able to see a friend, being able go to work and when all those things were closed off, some people found themselves very quickly in big trouble. carolyn, you've been giving advice for a long time now and through some periods of great uncertainty and change and national trauma, but given the fact we're through or have gone through lockdown, does this feel different from anything you've seen before? i'd never seen anything like this before, no. this is...this is unprecedented in its scope. usually when something is going wrong, it affects a certain number of people, a section of our country or people in a certain socio—economic group, but this is hitting everybody and hitting everybody in an asymmetrical way, so everybody is struggling but almost everybody is struggling with something different.
and so it feels very, it's like you can look out the window and everything seems normal, but you know in the background, that it's not normal, and people don't feel like they can communicate or rally together for one thing to make it better, to help it make sense, so there is a sort of, i think people feel adrift and tired because being scared for a long period can make you very tired so i think it's just this...a lot of people at loose ends and looking to connect. didi, you've been telling us about how you have more subscribers, you're working harder at this point, but does that also lead to extra stress and tiredness for you? how is it personally for you now? personally, at first, it did, but then we had to get more staff so we could do our work more properly. so we do have more people around, so it's not as bad as it seems.
and then having to pay people, it's made it so much easier. carolyn. people in my community are really rallying and being supportive, so the live discussions, for example, can turn around. if i'm feeling low, just having people weighing in. and looking out for each other and offering such good insights, and a good sense of community, has actually been really helpful. so it's kind of along two tracks, it's really difficult, i am tired, i am stressed. two, like anybody else, at the same time, it's put me in touch with some of the things that i find most rewarding about my life. relationship advisors didi editin lagos and carolyn hax in washington, dc on the many different stories they are hearing about relationships in this time of coronavirus. i'm philippa thomas and you are watching coronavirus: your stories, a programme about how covid—i9 is changing lives
around the world. next, we're going to hear about an unintended whirlwind romance between two young lovers who found themselves suddenly locked down together. back in the days before covid—i9, canadian katie mattis met brit ryan minett. she's a hairdresser, he's a builder. for the past few years they have been doing some world travelling. they hung out in australia. she dated his good friend. they met again in new zealand, and then the virus took hold and everything changed. katie and ryan spoke to me just before news came through of further restrictions in new zealand, beginning with the moment they first realised they were going into lockdown together back in march. katie and ryan, let's start with the moment you realised you were going to be lockdown together. what was that like? panic. laughter. "please, no."
no, it was a shock to the system, but not necessarily a bad one. just a bit of a shock. i mean, i'm sure it was a shock for everyone, really, just knowing that we would be cooped up in a house for a long period of time. and it was really new so it was terrifying because we both did not want to live with each other right away. how strict was your lockdown? four maybe six or seven weeks we kind of did not leave the house at all. yeah, we could go for hour—long walks, but you could not really go out of your neighbourhood — i think it's more than three kilometre. and only going out for essentials, one person from the house going. yeah, it was pretty strict. before i ask you more about what those weeks were like, ijust want to roll back a bit. tell us how you met. we met initially in australia,
on a banana farm, four years ago. we were both there to do our farm work to be able to get second—year visa and we were both in mission beach, in queensland. and, yeah, that's where we met. just friends there... ahh, you told me you loved me first day we met, and i did not reciprocate. i was probably drunk. i don't know, i don't remember that but i'll take it, i'll take it. never forget. would it be fair for me to say that, as romantic partners, you hadn't really got together until you were in new zealand this year? yeah, yeah. i mean, fate hasjust kind of brought it together properly. i went away on a trip to the south island and upon coming back, the spark ignited. it happened. yeah, yeah. an then you find out that, from a few dates and knowing the spark is there, you're
going to be living together, and it is going to be non—stop. so tell us a little bit more about what that life was like? what was most memorable about having to be locked down together? we taught the cat how to walk on a harness, so now he is our dog. that's probably the best, most memorable thing that's come out of lockdown because we can take him on oui’ adventurous now. it's actually — you'd be surprised, he's so good on the lead. like, for a cat, we always get people stop and say, "oh, my god, it is a cat on a lead!" but in terms of living together, yeah, i guess, that was an adjustment for sure. yeah, yeah, i mean, you know, we never spent as much time with one single person before so it took some adjustment. there was moments were we had to have, obviously, i was upstairs, she was
downstairs, we were taking our free time, but it kind of forced us to understand each other quickly and really get to know each other quickly, and i'm sure that if it wasn't for lockdown, we would not be in this position we are in at the moment, we wouldn't still be living together. so tell us about some of of the understandings you reached? what are you talking about? um, well, basically... ryan snores and, when he snores really bad, he has to go to a different room. understanding number one. number two, don't mix the dirty laundry and the clean laundry together. yeah, it's life lessons, hey. where did you learn that? and ryan, what did you find out about katie? i found out that basically i was searching for someone that was similar to me, and i was searching for someone
that wanted to explore and travel and see the world and, you know, we go on adventures all the time together, and i have not really had that before, because i have always been like, "do you want to got here, do you want to go there?" but my previous partners have not really been too interested, but she is straight on it, she's like, "let's go, let's go away!" and i really love that about her. she is always up for doing something fun. so it's really nice. i always knew that about you but never thought you would be the romantic one. thanks! katie, just looking back at where we started this conversation, went lockdown happen, you said you were panicking a bit, you were not ready for that sort of relationship and commitment. how do you feel now looking back at the way you went into this? i actually did a lot more soul—searching than i thought. as soon as lockdown was over, we did take a week break, because it was just so much of seeing each other and being in each other‘s space — we just needed
time to breathe. and in that week that he went away, is when i really realised, like, ah, this is what a normal relationship is supposed to feel like, and how much i really cared for ryan, and how much i wanted him around. so i don't regret anything. and i wasn't ready at the time but now i am, so i'm glad he was patient with me during that period because i'm sure i was not always enjoyable. actually, i know i wasn't. so you're both locked down together in new zealand, via australia. you're from canada and the uk. what were your families thinking? what kind of reaction did you get from your families? my parents are kind ofjust — realise i am not coming back, probably ever, unless i have to. they know i am over here. i think they are just happy that i found someone and, from what they know of ryan, they really love him and are quite supportive and they are pushing from grandchildren.
no pressure then? no, no, none at all. i think they would be sad if ryan was not around anymore. probably really sad, actually. and ryan, what about you? what about the reaction from family and friends when they find out you were living with someone full—time? well, i must say, my mum was really happy for the fact that i found someone that stopped me from biting my nails. all my life i have always been biting my nails and during lockdown, as we were always together, whenever i had my fingers in my mouth, biting my nails, she would, "stop it!" and i actually grew some nails and it was really a surprise for my mum and she said to me, if katie is able to do that, she is the one. from the sound of it, lockdown has worked for you? are you going to make any predictions about staying together? no, not so much predictions.
i think if you have too many expectations you just set yourself up for disappointment. so we are just going to keep on going with it. we do have some future plans about goals and whatnot, once residency happens and, yeah, just keep crossing the path as it comes but we're not planning on breaking up. and any tips for anyone else because there are a lot of people out there who are still feeling lonely or looking for love. everybody has kind of got everybody interested in relationships? any tips from what you guys have been through? to the single ladies out there, give the nice guy a chance. that is one thing i never did, i don't know why, and it is the best thing that can ever happen. definitely, be open to kindness and accept it because it works sometimes. and i say, just listen, boys, just listen. don't just say you are listening, actually take it in and listen properly.
katie, does ryan live by his own advice? he does, yes. it has been a work in progress. like, if a nice bmw drives by, he doesn't listen to anything, but most of the other times then, yeah, we are good. and you have talked about residency. you are thinking about visas. given that your homes have changed so much, is it possible to talk about what feels like home to you now? yeah, i mean, ifeel like new zealand is my home now. i have been here for three years. i have a really greatjob that i love and all my friends, i've got a cat, got ryan. as much as my family is back home, this feels like my base now and where i want to start my life. what about you ? yeah, same, it's home. this is our home. coronavirus, this pandemic has been such an uncertain time for everybody.
how has falling in love help you get through it? it has helped push the negative to the side because, during the whole pandemic, we have both been thinking a lot about each other and about what direction, we, as a relationship, are going to go in. although it has been really worrying about the pandemic and everything, we have had our own little... i was going to say battle. it kind of was a battle. basically you helped pull me out of bad places, i helped pull you out of bad places. we just push each other to achieve our goals and what makes us happy. and i think, outside the pandemic, that is also something we will take with us, the just keep on moving forward. katie mattis and ryan minett with a heartwarming story of love surviving lockdown. good luck to them. i'm philippa thomas,
thank you for watching coronavirus: your stories. hello once again. it's that time where we take a look at the detail for the next few days and then try to get a sense of the longer—term trends. there has been of late, despite all the headlines, some very pleasant summer sunshine with reasonable temperatures. but at the very same time, we've had incursions of really quite low level cloud, some of which has been very stubborn to shift. and then of course the headline feature has been the intensity of the thunderstorms brought to us thanks this area of low pressure slowly easing its way out of biscay, throwing its warm moist air up particularly towards the southern half of the british isles, which is how we start the weekend. a lot of cloud across the british isles. still that threat of heavy showers and thunderstorms across the southern half. further north, a little nose of high pressure settling things
nicely across scotland, northern ireland, the north west of england, where we'll see some of the best sunshine. underneath the murk on the eastern shores of scotland, 16 only. inland in the heart of england and wales, 2a—25 again, but still feeling very rather humid. so, take you on into sunday, you just get the sense of a drift here of some of these thunderstorms a little bit further towards the north. and although some of these night—time figures are beginning to fall back, i suspect it's still going to feel pretty close in inland parts of both england and wales. the significant change from sunday from saturday is that we're just, with the incursion of the low pressure, going to push the threat of the thunderstorms towards northern ireland, the south west of scotland. the bulk of them, though, still to be found across the heart of england and wales. still some murk on the north—eastern shores and up through northern and eastern scotland, where again the temperatures will be dented. so, that concludes proceedings for the weekend. but as i take you on into the start of next week, it really is spot the difference. monday could be a very unsettled day.
i know many of the schools are back, for example in scotland. but if you're trying to finish off your holiday period, that's not exactly what you want to see because there'll be showers if not longer spells of rain, the odd thunderstorm in the mix, because the remnants of the low are still dominating the scene across southern parts of scotland, northern ireland, england and wales, with only the far north of scotland escaping the brunt of that unsettled fare. and as far ahead as tuesday, i'm still pointing into the heart of the low pressure, sat on top of the british isles, so not a great deal of changes. we still have some low level murk and a lot of cloud to start the day. a bit of brightness coming through the next few days. not a write—off for sunshine by any means at all, but there are still plenty of opportunities for hefty downpours and thunderstorms. temperatures — high teens, low 20s or so and still feeling very close. will that pattern ever change? well, itjust so happens that we've got the feature that may temporarily change it as we get on into wednesday. a dry enough start, but then the rain begins to push in some
freshening winds coming in from the atlantic. but it's come from a long way down in the atlantic, so it's still relatively mild airs. and again, the temperatures really not changing very much, though we will have got rid of some of that murk around about those shores. into the middle part of the week, you'll see that we eventually push that low pressure right through the british isles, and that allows something a little bit more atlantic—driven. so, we're expecting to see something a little bit fresher eventually getting in towards the british isles. but the blues, the colder air, are well away from us, so i don't see a radical change in the temperatures. yes, i do, with that low pressure around, see it staying pretty unsettled for the next few days or so, but i think you will feel itjust a touch fresher at last.
tonight at ten. rushing for the exit, as british holidaymakers try to beat new quarantine rules coming into force injust a few hours‘ time. long lines at calais, with france joining the growing list of countries, from where uk travellers, must self—isolate, for 14 days. we decided to try and book a ferry, cancel our holiday and come home to avoid it. i've driven for 11 hours with breaks, so getting back to make sure that i don't have to self—isolate. we'll be live at the ports of calais, and dieppe where the last ferry leaves just before midnight. the french government says it regrets the uk's quarantine decision, and is threatening retaliation. also tonight...