Hotel quarantine experience when returning to Australia

Good morning @Myrna! How was your prison breakfast this morning? I had tea and a sachet of porridge nuked up in the microwave, so probably not too different to yours!
Breakfast this morning

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The hotel reception just phoned to give details about our release date. Sunday evening between 4pm and 6pm - hooray 🙏🏻🙏🏻 He said since everyone wants to escape ASAP at 4pm, so suggested we leave a little later. Hubby said 5pm would be OK. They will book a maxi taxi for us and bring our luggage from the cell to reception etc.
Counting down 3 1/4 days and only 10 meals to go ... we thought it would be 11 meals but we are not sorry for 1 meal less 🤣
 
I did hint that it ain't a Hilton Waldorf Astoria, nor Park Hyatt, nor JW Marriott, nor Intercontinental 😂

If it's any consolation, we did HQ in Singapore in the Mandarin Oriental which tends to be rated highly (#5 on tripadvisor). Yet the experience wasn't materially different to the HQ we did at Pullman Sydney Airport.

The catering was dire (brought in from catering company whereas some other hotels in SIN did in-house catering, as did the Pullman at SYD- makes a huge difference), and all the little touches you expect from higher end hotels - like fluffy bathrobes, cushions on the bed, etc were missing - it felt like the room had been stripped bare. We did have a door on the bathroom and a bathtub - which was better than the Pullman, and the room slightly larger, but when you're in a room for 2 weeks , you're in a room for 2 weeks...

Good luck with the last few days, not long to go now. I found #11 and #12 the worst, once on #13 it's the home stretch. We'll be doing stint #3 in HQ in PER next month, all going well.
 
Anyone know how long it takes NSW to issue an invoice after you get released? My next possible trip out I will get out of HQ about six weeks before the project closes and 14 weeks delay to invoice, which was Qld last time, won't work.

cheers skip
 
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@cove , I found it really odd, returning home. We were posted to the US, which we loved, and were given a lot of support and help to settle in and deal with the culture shock of moving there, which actually was a bit more than initially expected. When we first arrived, there was the obvious "honeymoon period", and we thought oh well, they speak English here and we are very familiar with American culture from the movies, TV show etc, how easy it will be! However, after about 6 months it really hit me just how different Aussies are from Americans in some ways, and how similar in others and I definitely felt culture shock and a bit homesick at that point. This soon wore off though and the time we spent there is a golden period of my life.

I certainly did not expect ito have culture shock though on return to Aus. However, we were not supported by the military at all with return - I suppose they thought we were just pleased to be home. It took a long time to settle back in. We were home, but had no real idea what had happened here whilst we were away (1990-1992 - so the pre-internet era which meant very limited news from home whuilst we were gone) and so we kept missing the "in jokes" and references to social occurrences and politics, suffered a bit of relevance deprivation syndrome after a couple of years of the high life and being regarded as something special/unusual in the USA, and of course we were not prepared for the total disinterest or even aggressive dismissal of our time away by many in our social circle. I honestly found the adjustment to being home harder than it was to the adjustment when we arrived in the USA. Mind you, it was awesome to be back near the family (well near in military terms anyway), and to be able to get back on with my "real life". I've since heard that this experience is very common for those of us lucky enough to be away and then return.
We were lucky to live in both LA (in our much younger days - 5 years) and London (in our older days - 9 1/2 years). We treasure both experiences. We would return to live in London again, but not LA - although I have relatives living there. However, Sydney will be once again our home!
We are thankful for having friends who have supported us through the years which made our return to normal life in AUS somewhat easier. We found it hard to make friends when we first moved to LA and London - but we have become friends with Aussies from similar background, church friends and some of our neighbours in those cities.
 
Anyone know how long it takes NSW to issue an invoice after you get released? My next possible trip out I will get out of HQ about six weeks before the project closes and 14 weeks delay to invoice, which was Qld last time, won't work.

cheers skip
Will let you know after our release. However we are not in a hurry to receive it, as we have a huge land tax bill from revenue nsw to be paid in one months time 😩😩
 
Countdown clock to Sunday seems to be running quicker now.....Perth may end our 4 day lockdown before your release date.
We have test cricket tickets for Adelaide in December.....and we will be fully vaccinated.
I still cannot figure why vaccinated returnees need to do a 14 day imprisonment. A review of those rules could cut the time to say a week and 2 tests for covid.
 
Countdown clock to Sunday seems to be running quicker now.....Perth may end our 4 day lockdown before your release date.
We have test cricket tickets for Adelaide in December.....and we will be fully vaccinated.
I still cannot figure why vaccinated returnees need to do a 14 day imprisonment. A review of those rules could cut the time to say a week and 2 tests for covid.
Yes, counting down: 2 1/2 days and 7 meals till release.
Agree, why fully vaccinated returnees need to be locked up in risky prison hotel environment - while our "vaccine is not a race" leader quarantined in the luxury tax payer funded lodge?
We consider ourselves to be very lucky to get flights home - although there had been a lot of heart stopping moments, worries and anxiety of being offloaded at the last minute. Throughout our return home plan we have received unspoken and unexpected support from some friends in this forum (you know who you are) - who understand our plights. We are thankful that there was one BA staff who went the extra mile booking the flights for us. We feel for the many thousands Aussies still stranded overseas and hope that there will be a change in the wind for them to come home too. But, it does not look hopeful at the moment with Qld and WA wanting to reduce the number of international arrivals drastically.
 
PM put out National Cabinet announcement of an agreed "pathway out" of restrictions. including a temporary 50% cut on caps, across the board, from 6370 weekly to 3185 :(. Reduced caps in place by 14 July.
Abolishing the cap for returning vaccinated passengers part of phase 3 when vaccinations make COVID outcomes 'like the flu'. No mention yet of departures.
 
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Release date is getting closer - should be counting down the hours now - under 26 hours to go!
Today we got all sorts of documents to read. Instructions from the hotel on what to do tomorrow. Letter from the NSW Police certify that each of us has completed the required 14 days for our prison hotel quarantine. Also a letter from NSW health certify that we are still sane (just kidding) - that we have tested negative two days ago. Also instruction for us to get tested after our release etc.
A bit of excitement, through the peep hole I could see some policemen standing opposite our cell and heard loud knocking on the cell next door but no answer. Hubby yelled out maybe they are dead! Then they knocked on our cell door asking us to open. They took our temperatures and gave us some letters to read.
 
Only a few hours we will be released from our prison hotel quarantine. Hooray! Such a big relief to be home 🙏🏻🙏🏻

Here is our “last” meal – one of the better ones. But, we look forward to home cooked meals, even though they may be bland and boring.

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For those who may be doing hotel quarantine, we did not draw the “lucky” hotel but we were prepared to make our long 14 days stay more bearable by packing real cutlery (cannot eat from the plastic knives and forks they provided) and real plates / bowls (food taste much better than in the Styrofoam / paper containers). We also brought along our own tea / coffee – but forgot the porcelain mugs (instead of drinking from paper cups provided). Plus own toiletries (shampoo, toothpaste, Dettol wipes), and a Dyson mini vac – courtesy of Mrscove – because I am a germaphobe! After the initial hiccups with the porcelain cups / mugs and an extra chair, the hotel reception has been very good in delivering clean towels, bed linen, tissue boxes and toilet paper (yes!) when requested. Someone suggested to roll up a bath towel and put it in front of the cell door, to prevent air from the corridor coming in. We did that, but not sure if this was an urban myth or actually keeping out any virus 🤣
 
We are so thankful for being able to return home with the encouragement and help of friends on this forum (some we owe a great gratitude) and personal friends from far and wide around the globe who have contacted us by phone (having to pass the hotel reception Spanish inquisition first 😂), daily emails, chats. They have all cheered us to the finishing line. 😘😍 We hope our paths will cross yours in the future. Keep well and stay safe. Borders will be re-opened one day (when?) and we can return to our wanderlust ways again. ✈✈
 
I really enjoyed your account from your cell Myrna! hit me up and I'll buy you a proper coffee (porcelain cup and all!) if you're ever in the Sunshine Coast! :D
Taking a rain cheque. You will never know, we will be in Brisbane to sell our investment property in the next few months - if we are allowed to travel that is.
 
This thread made us realize that we were so lucky to do our 14 day quarantine at home in March,2020 when we returned from London after 3 nights there.
At that time there were no police checks but we did the time in the comfort of our own half acre. We had never done home deliveries so that was interesting.
Very pleased @Myrna is now experiencing freedom.I loved the comments about the Dyson minivac satisfying a germaphobe.
 

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