A sombre first anniversary this last day of January 2021

I’m not sure it’s an anniversary any of us would wish to celebrate but it’s an anniversary most of us will never forget! It’s a year to the day since we had the first confirmed case of covid in the Canaries: it was, indeed, the first in Spain. A year ago yesterday I started THIS post, the original one that reported infection among a group of German visitors in La Gomera as follows:

Canarian President Ángel Victor Torres has said that Sanidad is studying five people in these islands, two of whom had contact in Germany with a confirmed case of Coronavirus, and three who lived with the pair. At present, the protocol for dealing with such cases has been activated, and the five individuals were transferred yesterday afternoon to a specially-equipped hospital in La Gomera where they remain quarantined in isolation awaiting test results.

A year ago today it was all confirmed by the Canarian Government. Now, a year later, Tenerife at least is giving itself a sombre pat on the back for measures which were imposed just before Christmas. OK they weren’t welcomed, and were perceived as restrictive, some sort of tourism shot in the foot when one was really needed in the arm – metaphorically and immunologically! – but now we can see how those measures really helped because our figures’ growth is slowing while in other islands that weren’t in special measures, especially Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, it’s rising quickly again with infections from Christmas mixing starting to filter through the data.

At least there’s a vaccine in sight for some, with a programme expected to take all this year and some of next to get through. Where will we be one year from now? Only time will tell us, but for the moment, this is a sad and sober anniversary at the end of a year that we have at least survived. That, for its own part, is worth celebrating even as we grieve the millions who have now died globally.

Please do feel free to post your thoughts below. And to those who have overcome it themselves or watched a family member suffer and then recover, however slowly and tortuously – and I know several readers are in such a position – I am so very very glad that you and they are still here.


  1. Thank you Janet for your thoughtful words, many of us have been touched so far, ‘attending’ on line funerals is something we are unfortunately becoming familiar with. Please be kind to those you meet, we are frequently unaware of the suffering of others. Stay safe everyone and God Bless.

  2. Ah. Is there any way to find the address? (Like Pudding Lane in London for the Great Fire of 1666.)

    1. Author

      To be honest, I doubt it. I dare say it’s known in some quarters but such places involved in this way in such incidents generally find they’ve gained notoriety rather than fame and so don’t want it broadcast.

  3. Author

    As far as I know they weren’t in an hotel but a private rental property. It was in Hermigua municipio.

  4. Thank you for the thoughtful reminder. Does anyone know in which hotel/complex this first case in La Gomera (Hermigua) occurred? There will be a a plaque there sooner or later, or at least there should be.

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