The coronavirus (COVID-19) is the most discussed and a serious threat to the entire world. Many countries have imposed quarantine and lockdown which has impacted millions of lives.

However, Shanghai, the megacity of China with a population of about 2.5 crores has dealt with coronavirus outbreak better than most of the cities in the world. I discussed COVID-19 & Self-quarantine with my three friends based in Shanghai, China and here is what they have to say:

Q. How many days did you spend in home-quarantine?
Person1: “Nearly a month”

Person2: “7 weeks. since Jan 23rd

Person3: “In fact I am wondering if I really fall under Self quarantine , I am just reduce chance to go out to avoid being infected”

Q. Were you prepared for self-quarantine? How did you manage your food supplies?
P1: “Not prepared for quarantine… as I think it will be fine in Shanghai.
And in quarantine period, I get food and supplies online and delivered to the community.
So I pick them up at the reception. Don’t need to go to supermarket.”

P2: “no it happens suddenly. as the disease becomes serious. 
no one was prepared when it happened in Wuhan. buying foods from nearby small markets.
they still got meat veg noodles rice. didn’t go to supermarket. it’s dangerous there.”

P3:”Because initially it’s Chinese new year so we have prepared some food which is tradition. May randomly buy from online channel picking places those don’t have much cases.And my parents may go to supermarket nearby as well to quickly pick the needed.For those really asked to Self-quarantine I heard that food will be delivered to their door”

Q. Is mask sufficient for prevention & safety?
P2. “No, not only Mask is enough. you also need to take hat and take gloves when you get out, when you come back put the mask and your coat outside of the window. let the winds dry them. we had stocks of mask at home. and ordered some more online.  thimerosal are difficult to get but you will need them”

Q. How did you deal with your kid? What about his school and exams?
P2. “he joins online class. schools only begin no exams yet”

Q. Is it depressing to stay home caged for so many days?
P1: “Not scary. As our work and life have to be stopped. Chinese gov. tells citizens to stay at home, not go out, so we can’t go out normally. That’s not good and feel like kind of isolation and want to go out. I just thought of a big impact Is we couldn’t go to hospital Because it’s very dangerous , and I have to wait until it’s safer. This has impacts to many families I think.”

Q. How did you utilize this time?
P1: “For me, I read books, listen to news and audio books, simple stretch as I’m still recovering, learn English, cook, watch interesting videos and etc.”

P2:”doing project for the company all the time. super busy even at home”

P3:”Reading book, doing exercise, chatting with family or friends via Wechat , watching tv or movie etc..”

Q. How did it hamper your work life?
P1: “2wks more holidays in Shanghai and now we partially work at home, partially work in office, so there are impacts indeed on everyone

P3:”For life – Cancel the planned dates with friends and visits to relatives and short distance trip plan. For work- working from home may experience bad network or VPN performance, now it’s ok to be onsite but wearing mask all day also not a good experience”

Q. What are few myths about Covid – 19 in China?
P1: “Is that rumors? haha. Lab leaking. Biology weapon of our enemy.”

P3: “Like some traditional Chinese medicine can cure the disease, or Rumor about some public places where there are cases but truth is not, Or incorrect channel of virus spreading which is not true”

Q. What precautions are being taken in public transport and office?
P1: “I don’t know the public transport, but in office I know we had provided masks and sanitizers. And emails out to employees to be cautious on self-hygiene.”

P2: “public transport:  the subway and bus get disinfect  daily.  people all wear masks.  temperatures are taken in the subway entrance. office we are suggested not to go to office in the first 4 weeks. windows are on. food supplies in a suite. no choice.  people are seperately sit one per a desk and have lunch by batch.”

Q. What do you suggest people outside China during this pandemic?
P1: “Follow instructions of medical experts in their country. Every country will have different approaches, and experts know more than us. And wash hands more often. Limit out. Work at home in peak.”

P2: “stay indoors. reduce your frequency to go out. if you have to choose the place of less people or the time of less people.when you are back. wash your hands clean door handles.don’t take parcels directly. have them put in a place and you can take it. we also have a tissue paper at each elevator for people to push button.”

Q. What do you feel about racism during this pandemic & old viral video of bat soup?
P1. “I saw the pic once and not felt good, and about racist, I know in other counties , Asians, especially Chinese are criticized and not politely treated in certain areas , but the breakout is from Wuhan , we don’t have anything to say… In our country, at the early stage, people are scary of Wuhan people. As they are with high risk to get the virus. Later on, as people are back to Wuhan or registered in other cities if they are from Hubei province , then it’s ok. People are scary of the unknown , how the virus spreader , how serious it is”

P2. “bat soup is disgusting. i don’t think people should eat them. neither do most of the Chinese. we want those violated the law of animal protection to be punished. i don’t want to comment on racism- we did the same to people in Wuhan when they try to escape from their city.  this is a sense of self protection and it hurts others. but the fact is this disease is very hard to prevent where ever it happens, it will spread fast. the root cause  is still under investigation. there is a family lived in the “origin” of the disease for 20days but not get infected.  wait for the scientists to explore more.”

P3. “Also hate / don’t understand people who eat wild animals, especially with chance to spread virus but this shouldn’t be racial.”

Q.Your message for unity & peace of the world
P1. “Virus doesn’t have discrimination. Global is a village. I’m glad to help and you are doing a meaningful thing.”
P2. “it’s a longer and hard battle for everyone. some gets recovered are infected again here. it’s a war and everyone stays at home is a soldier in this battle field.”

Disclaimer : The opinions expressed in this article are those of the individuals. They do not reflect the opinions or views of the author.