People in the little land of Mary all agree. 2020 is one of the worst years ever. Bad news across wherever you go: the potatoe festivities in Bënzelt were cancelled, noone was given their day off from school to hop around in Echternach for the yearly procession, and on April 29th the world was definitely crumbling down for the Luxembourgers: the Pentecost cruise aborted ship, too. Every general meeting, every inauguration and every tiniest little village celebration between Lasauvage and Schlindermanderscheid: cancelled. For the local politicians this meant having to stay at home in the evenings. Some just then realised that they have a wife, and that their kids still live at home.
In such a situation of crisis, you actually learn a lot – too much really – about your fellow citizens. Who would have guessed that the people of Luxembourg are so crazy about rice, pasta and toilet paper and will happily face an hour of traffic jam for a Big Mac. By the time you could read in Luxbazar the following personal ad – “woman with toilet rolls looking for a guy with pasta”, you knew things were definitely going belly up.
But everyone was on top of it and actually managed to get work done, mostly digitally. Everyone? Yes! Even Astrid Lulling (with her just about 91 years of age) and Simone Beissel (practically a digital-native) recorded their television show via videoconference! And even the Greens, on their third attempt, finally managed to hold their digital congress. Respect!
The lockdown also managed something else which Fränz Bausch has been finding a hard nut to crack for years. There were no more traffic jams.
Then there was confinement. The Minister of Finance had to open up the wallet of mummy state so far, his goldilocks went out of control. Let’s just hope that Luxembourg doesn’t lose its Triple-A, otherwise Pierre Gramegna’s hair can vouch for nothing. The Minister for Tourism offered everyone in the country a voucher of 50 Euros to discover new spheres! The stoners were already getting excited, considering that cannabis should be legalized soon enough, this could only be a hint. How utterly disappointed they were when they found out the so called ‘Bong’ was merely to pay for an overnight stay at one of Luxembourg’s camping sites. One step after the other guys: first #Holidaysathome, then #Gettinghighathome .
The long-lasting opposition party CSV finds the pandemic hard to live with. First the children’s playgrounds couldn’t open up quickly enough, then they wanted the pubs and bars to remain open until the early hours for Luxembourg’s National Day celebrations, but then ultimately there were complaints that deconfinement was done way too quickly. It doesn’t help that if Frank Engel (he is the current president of the CSV) says ‘yes’ to something, if his party slams him with a big ‘no’ on the following day. The latest polls show that even the citizens of Luxembourg find this difficult to follow. Well, at least the CSV has now discovered modernisation: Jean-Paul Schaaf (54) will replace Marco Schank (65) in Chambers.
You are not going to believe it, but 2020 also brought on some good news: Etienne Schneider gained back his personal life, the HSV football team has pulled it off again not to relegate to a lower league, the DP has a new section in Lintgen and you are reading the first ever edition of the new DP Magazine! If that’s not awesome news, I don’t know what is …