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Tēnā koe i tēnei ahiahi,

Tonight I feel like we should play the goodnight kiwi video before toddling off to bed. Tomorrow, lockdown. But really it's already here.

My daughter and I walked to an empty school field just minutes from our house this morning. One of her old teachers waved from a distant classroom. We were kicking a football around when a mum and her toddler turned up. They were a good 20 metres away.

Soon after, my daughter decided she was tired and wanted to leave. The woman said: ''Sorry, you're not leaving because of us are you?"

Here are the quick headlines:

While I want you keeping your physical distance, don't be a stranger. You can join the conversation on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram or send me a message. Contribute to our daily Covid-19 podcast by downloading our VoxPop app and sending an audio message.

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As one reader said to me: We may be apart but we're in this together.

Don't disappoint the PM

News snapshot

The state of emergency declared shortly after midday gives authorities wide-sweeping powers, including the use of military patrols if needed.

Civil Defence Emergency Management director general Sarah Stuart-Black said it would initially be in place for a week. There would be no tolerance for people who do not self isolate, she added.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush was singing from the same song sheet, saying people should not be driving to the beach or a park to take a walk.

 "You only go out in your vehicle if you need to go and get essential food supplies, essential medical supplies or medical treatment. Otherwise, please stay at home."

The people in this picture probably wish they had followed his advice already.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern also said, yes, "stay at home". 

The Government was prepared for 10,000 Kiwis returning from overseas during the lockdown, though the window for many was now closed.

Those who did make it back would be quarantined in hotels and Government facilities like Whangaparaoa military base, she said.

Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said there were 205 confirmed Covid-19 cases, including five from Marist School in Auckland. He expected the total to keep climbing for at least the next 10 days.

Two-thirds of New Zealand's Covid-19 cases so far are in "older" people but the patterns are still too "idiosyncratic" to draw strong predictions, a researcher modelling the virus says.

Some iwi aren't taking any chances though, effectively cutting off their settlements from non residents.

It all pales in comparison with India's decision today to lockdown its population of 1.3 billion.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, effectively, "stay at home". 

I hope you have been paying attention.

Helping hand

Still a bit confused about what is an essential service during lockdown? Read this. Or immerse yourself in the joys of the official Covid-19 website.

As Microbiologist Siouxsie Wiles says, don't pop anyone's bubble.

However, it doesn't mean you can't have a treat or two. The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra can be one tonight, thanks to a group of musicians uniting, but from their own living rooms, to entertain you.

What did we do before the interweb?
They won't all be squeezed into one room

Pet peeves

You might be having a lovely time at home snuggling up with your pet, but what if you were invading the space they normally have to themselves? Note the image of my brother's wary dog below.

This cat certainly isn't digging the ballet routine. It's unlikely our police will give musical performances like this.

Big ups to Andrea Spake, who has sent me a list of more than 40 cheery songs, and Moana Waitoki, who has gone one step further and created a self-isolation playlist.

I have added some of their suggestions to our RNZ fans' Covid-19 pick-me-up Spotify playlist.  To my brother and sister-in-law I have, through the kindness of my heart, not for taste reasons, added your tracks as well.

To my dad, and everyone else born on March 25, happy weirdest birthday ever. Hopefully the night away voucher we got you doesn't expire anytime soon.

If you fancy an ole school birthday shout out in this wonderful newsletter, which no doubt you are urging all your family and friends to sign up to, then drop me a line.

Be good. Don't pop anyone's bubble. Kia Kaha. 
Cooper. Chilling out or sending a message?
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