The Christmas it is a special date marked by reunions, hugs, late-night meetings and wishes. A time that this year has been truncated by the Covid-19 pandemic that we have had to live through. The new Wuhan coronavirus dyed the days of many families black, taking with it the lives of more than 19,000 people in the Community of Madrid alone, according to data from Mortuary Health. After the 12 grapes, nobody imagined that 2020 would bring episodes of tragedy in which isolating yourself would take on such a different meaning.
Next to the Christmas decorations there are now hydroalcoholic gel dispensers and masks, and far away were the long tables of guests that have been reduced to 6 people. A much more intimate celebration in which we will value in greater measure those who this year have been able to sit around it. Also those who, unfortunately, watch from above.
Madrid will remain closed around the perimeter until January 6, as indicated by the Ministry of Health, but entrances and exits will be allowed to visit relatives and friends. The curfew will be for the holidays from 1.30 to 6 in the morning. The rest of the days will be kept from 0.00 hours. In the hotel industry, bar service will not be allowed, the interior may not exceed 50% and on the terraces the limit will be 75%, except in those basic closed health areas, where it will be 50%. Similarly, in places of worship and indoor sports facilities, the Decree establishes the reduction of capacity throughout the region to 50%.
Visiting a market at Christmas is already a tradition of the holidays. The centenary Plaza Mayor Christmas market returns this year with half of its stalls (56 booths), a capacity of 232 people with control at the entrance and exit of the enclave, exterior perimeter and signage on the ground, in addition to all the hygienic measures that each stall must have , such as masks, the 1.5 meter safety distance and hydroalcoholic gel dispensers. A way to enjoy the tradition and the set of crafts that artisans offer in each of their booths. On the other hand, there is the Feria Mercado de Artesanía de Madrid, which has become a national benchmark in the sector. In this year’s edition, number 33, 67 artisan workshops participate, from seven different autonomous communities (of which 60 are from the region).
The space will remain open until January 5, 2021, with all the security measures against Covid-19 guaranteed. Located on Paseo de Recoletos, between Plaza de Colón and Calle de Prim. The established hours are from 11 am to 9 pm, except on December 31, which will open from 11 am to 3 pm, but it will be closed today and on New Years.
Nativity scenes at 50%, in shifts and until January 5
The Madrid Nativity Scene Association celebrates this year the 75th anniversary of its foundation. More than 30 Natives will be exhibited during these days in all the districts of the capital. Through glass, some abroad and with capacity controls, the municipal centers, institutions and temples of Madrid have adapted their facilities to bring this emblem of Christmas to the public.
The Bethlehem of the Plaza de Cibeles stands out, created by the teacher José Luis Mayo Lebrija for the City Council. Open until January 5, from 10:10 am to 8:00 pm, with free access upon withdrawal of the invitation at the box office. The capacity will be reduced and distributed in turns of 10 minutes. It also has audio-described guided tours for people with visual disabilities. The Bethlehem of the Plaza de la Villa also returns, with a spectacular exterior assembly due to the pandemic, located in front of what for more than two centuries was the house of the Town Hall. In the same way, the Bethlehem of the Royal Post Office will comply with all protection measures against Covid, including adequate ventilation.
Will contain eight traditional scenes -from the annunciation to the flight to Egypt or the adoration of the Magi- and a novena that will recall the situation we live in with the recreation of a hospital.
Chimes, without public and parades of Kings at 50%
Madrid will not allow acts of bells in any public square in the region, which implies that the traditional take the 12 grapes in Puerta del Sol it will also be suspended. In addition, both the delivery of letters to Santa Claus and the Three Wise Men and the Cavalcade of the latter, can only be carried out in limited areas, with a capacity of 50% and the attending public seated, as announced by the Deputy Minister of Public Health and Plan Covid-19, Antonio Zapatero.
Christmas lights with roadblocks and surveillance
Madrid welcomed Christmas with the lighting of 10.8 million LED lights. To enjoy all the security measures, the pedestrian streets such as Preciados and Carmen, could have a single direction of circulation if the police officers consider it necessary to avoid crowds.
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