Returning Kiwi garners PM’s attention for viral posts praising quarantine process

While there’s been a number of blunders over the past few weeks around the Government’s handling of managed isolation and quarantine facilities, it’s not all bad.

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Kate Catalinac’s daily Facebook posts from her two week quarantine were filled with gratitude. Source: Seven Sharp

Returning Kiwi Kate Catalinac documented her Auckland isolation experiences in a public Quarantine Diary on Facebook

Ms Catalinac, originally from Nelson, started some of her daily diary entries by naming a sweet slice to represent her mood. 

Her positivity quickly gained her many readers, including the Prime Minister.

Ms Catalinac, a San Francisco-based creative director, filled her days with gratitude.

“Day five. If you’re complaining in any way about the New Zealand Government’s managed isolation plan, I assume you are incorrectly wearing your Covid-19 mask over your eyes,” one diary entry starts.

“No plan is perfect because no group of people is perfect.

“Before I left San Francisco I was a little bit nervous about managed isolation,” another post reads.

“I was wrong. And I needn’t have worried … I’ve been welcomed home like family by strangers.” 

She said she wasn’t sugarcoating her experiences in isolation either because she “can’t afford the carbs”. She said most people had positive managed isolation experiences.

Now out of quarantine, she said she was “absolutely high” on freedom. 

“I’ve had so many amazing responses (to the diary),” she said.

Ms Catalinac said she met Jacinda Ardern upon touching down in Wellington. Ms Catalinac said she approached Ms Ardern to tell her about her positive managed isolation experience and her diary.

Ms Ardern then asked: “Oh – are you the one who was writing about the slices?”

She said the encounter made her “very happy”.

“That was sweeter than any of the slices I was delivered.”