Life returning to normal in Japan

In Japan, this is the first weekend since a state of emergency covering much of the country has been lifted. And people are making up for lost time.

Since Friday, restaurants and bars have resumed serving alcohol.

A man said, "I'm really happy. I've needed a break from feeling stressful. I went out for drinks until 8 p.m. last night."

But another man said, "I don't feel like going out for drinks just yet, because I am not sure I can enjoy myself."

In a popular shopping district in central Tokyo, a street has been reopened to pedestrian traffic for the first time in about six months.

One visitor said it has been a long time, and it feels good to be able to drink outside again.

The feeling of liberation, however, could be short-lived.

An association of prefectural governors is calling on the central government to strengthen the health care system to prepare for a resurgence of infections.

Tokyo Governor Koike Yuriko said, "We will take timely and appropriate measures to further curb the coronavirus. Now is the time to lay the groundwork to get peoples' lives back to normal and the economy moving again."

Osaka Governor Yoshimura Hirofumi says he is sure a sixth wave of contagion will come. He says it is crucial to make a range of preparations, including streamlining the chain of command in the medical system so that patients can be treated promptly.

The governors have demanded the central government help reinforce the country's medical system in case there is a resurgence of the virus.

Tokyo on Saturday reported 196 new infections, nearly half the number of a week ago. Saturday was also the seventh day in a row that the number of daily cases in the capital fell below 300.