Lockdown pains! - Vendor suffers double setback from COVID strictures
It was a double whammy of inconvenience for Sharon Carter, a vendor in Metcalfe Market, Annotto Bay.
Carter, who lives in St Catherine, had just recently been relieved of the lockdown in the parish and is now being affected by the quarantine which took effect on Thursday morning in St Mary.
“It appeared very sudden to us, wi never expect it this morning (Thursday),” she said.
“I buy my goods, come inside to sell and this morning, early, we hear of quarantine. They said they are giving us until 11 o’clock to put in our goods inside the market and we are not supposed to go on the street,” the vendor explained.
Carter has been selling in the market for 30 years and it was her usual routine to arrive at the market on a Wednesday night.
“I’m going to sleep right here tonight (Thursday) with my goods. If they say I’m to leave the market, I have friends that I can stay over with but I really don’t want to leave my goods,” she said.
Sonia Tyrell shared a similar dilemma.
Both vendors each spent in excess of $200,000 to purchase goods at the Coronation Market on Wednesday.
“Irish and carrot cyah tek di heat, dem need fresh air so me beg di soldier a bly fi collect some box so me can throw dem out,” said the distraught vendor.
The vendors are not opposed to the quarantine but in the meantime, they are waiting to hear from the Government as to their next move.
They lamented that if no buyers come by on their usual shopping day which is Friday, they will be counting heavy losses.
Another vendor suggested that the Government send a team to value the goods and have them purchased for infirmaries in the parish.
With cookshops closed, Carter said they prepared a meal of roast yam, plantain and saltfish to satisfy their hunger.
More than 40 vendors occupy the market which has been set up with a sanitisation area.