Dateline: China

Since I used to live and work in China, I’ve been in contact with my friends who are still there. I want to share some of their posts and texts.

First, from my college classmate TC in Hong Kong:


He writes:

HK is in a chaos, no mask, no rubbing alcohol, no rice, no noodle, no toilet paper, no condoms (don’t know why) no sanitary napkins (cause the material use is the same as face surgical mask, and the material will be used for mask first)


From M in Liuzhou:


He writes:

This solution offers 99% of protection.


From my former coworker L in Liuzhou:

(I’m not able to post a video on here, so I’m posting my tweet of the video.)


And finally, from my former student X in Liuzhou:

Dear Robin:

Thank you sending me a message on January 26, and I’m sorry for not answer promptly.

Let me explain in chronological order:

March 16, 2003, I received an E-mail from the USA, and knew: The World Health Organization warned on Saturday of a worldwide health threat as a mystery killer pneumonia spread from east Asia to other parts of the globe. Afterward, I realized that the epidemic situation was kept as a secret. Every time when I went to a kindergarten to fetch my (child), I talked to the parent of a little (child) whose father was a doctor of The (ABC) Hospital, and mother a nurse at the Emergency Department of The (XYZ) Hospital; both of them knew nothing about the atypical pneumonia; nobody reminded them to protect themselves. I was in double fear: the possibility of the disease spreading, and the possibility to arrest those people who dared to disseminate the announcement from The World Health Organization. In June I confirmed that we were so lucky; there wasn’t a SARS patient in LiuZhou.

On December 31, 2019 and January 1, 2020, my WeChat was blocked.

In 2020 nobody dared to say until an 84-year-old expert said that the WuHan Pneumonia had the power to infect 15 doctors and nurses. I was sad for many days because the comrades haven’t the ability to learn anything from their experience.

January 23, 2020, my day to rest. I remembered the next two days I would work and the (workplace) would be open.

January 24, my day to work. A notice was post telling the (customers): today the (workplace) is closed for one day because it’s under repair, and on the coming 15 days it will be open. One hour later the (manager) came on her day off, and the notice was changed: from today on the (workplace) will be closed till a new notice.

January 25,the first day of Chinese New Year, my day to work; after work I turned off my smart phone. From 26 to 30 I had 5 days off. On January 29 I saw your message and replied  concisely.

January 31, my day to work. In my office I read a lot in internet. 8 people were all doctors who were threatened on January 1 because they warned the other doctors that the coronavirus might be as dangerous as SARS. Also something joyful: the comrades will welcome the American experts to help our country.

The pneumonia has been spread to some countries. The Doctors must have told you how to protect yourself.

All My Best Wishes!


NB: I have edited X’s email above to remove all identifying information.

©robinstl 2020

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