What was supposed to be a dream trip for three Miami residents has turned into a nightmare as they remain quarantined on a cruise ship in the Nile River region of Egypt where over 30 people have tested positive for the coronavirus.
Amarilys “Amy” Khamissian spoke with NBC 6 by phone Monday morning, describing the events after her and two others from South Florida were told they must stay on the boat for another almost two weeks.
“The crew members who are trying to take care of us do not come into our cabin,” Khamissian said during the interview. “We basically clean our own cabin. From time to time, we can step onto the sun deck.”
The Miami Herald reports that the trio from South Florida – Khamissian, Grisell Parodi and Javier Parodi – all tested negative for the virus while on board the M.S. Asara but must stay quarantined with the other 171 people on board after 33 people did test positive.
“They bring the food in from outside. They are honestly doing the best they can with the facilities they have,” she said.
Health officials reportedly thought another 11 crew members tested positive this weekend, but those tests came back negative.
“The Capitan does not address us directly,” Khamissian said when asked by anchor Johnny Archer what they had been told. “Our information started with our guide from the travel company.”
Khamissian said doctors and medical crews were brought in from Cairo, Egypt to give both crew and passengers tests, adding they would be tested again Monday with any positive results starting the 14-day quarantine all over again.
“It’s hard not to be appreciative when you’re in a condition like ours,” Khamissian said to anchor Sheli Muniz when asked about the scheduled 12-day trip. “It’s also difficult not to be frustrated after we lost our days on vacation.”
Quarantined ships came center stage in South Florida on Sunday when the Regal Princess was initially kept from docking at Port Everglades while two crew members were tested for the virus before eventually being able to dock late at night.
Khamissian said she had not been told as of Monday morning about when they would be able to return to Miami once the quarantine is lifted.
“We want to be treated, if anything, on U.S. soil,” she said. “I asked a doctor if there is any risk of taking us out of here health wise. He said no.”