Vegemite and beer: Senator’s self-isolation diet
A TOWNSVILLE-based Senator in isolation, who was "incredibly surprised" to find out she had contracted coronavirus, is feeling tired but otherwise fine and without other symptoms.
LNP Senator Susan McDonald, in her first interview since being tested for the virus on Friday evening and immediately going into self-isolation before finding out she was positive on Monday afternoon, told the Bulletin she still doesn't know where she picked it up from.
Now on day six of isolation, Senator McDonald is home, as is protocol for someone like her, who is otherwise fit and healthy, to take pressures off resources at the hospital.
But the Senator's constant travel for work has revealed a stark fact for her under quarantine - her fridge contains only a carton of Great Northern beer and a jar of vegemite, though she insists she normally keeps the spread in the pantry.
It's most likely the second biggest Vegemite scandal of the pandemic so far, after Australians reacted with horror at Tom Hanks' update on social media.
The actor shared a photo of two pieces of toast with an absurd amount of Vegemite on them.
Senator McDonald, who opted to miss the NQ Cowboys vs Brisbane Broncos clash at the Queensland Country Bank Stadium on March 13, said in hindsight she is "very pleased" she did that though she initially felt she had been overreacting.
She cancelled all her commitments for the weekend and self-isolated at home. Her isolation will end once two COVID-19 tests, done 24 hours apart, both come back negative.
Thirteen civic leaders, including Townsville Enterprise chief executive Patricia O'Callaghan and Hinchinbrook MP Nick Dametto, have gone into self-isolation because they had contact with Senator McDonald on Thursday or Friday.
How Senator McDonald contracted COVID-19 remains unknown, and she says she doesn't believe she's had contact with anyone who had been unwell.
Senator McDonald is urging the community to have confidence that Townsville's health system is in "good stead" to handle the pandemic and said people need to continue to support each other through this time of global uncertainty.
Senator McDonald said children in the community, unlike adults, had not lived through "international worries" on this scale before and should be reassured that "we will get through this".
"I'm not an expert in these matters (and) I suggest you look up advice on how best to talk to your children, but I think they are often forgotten in all of these discussions," she said.
"And apart from an eagerness not to have school, they too are thinking about what this means for them."