[imagesource: Getty Images]
The coronavirus continues to dominate the news, with the number of confirmed cases now at over 40 000 worldwide, and the death toll at 910 and rising.
We’ve seen some startling videos of what Wuhan, the epicentre of the virus, looks like on lockdown, and in some parts of China, residents are even being chastised for not wearing masks by drones equipped with speakers.
In short, if you’re in China, you probably want to get the hell out, and that’s certainly true for the South Africans currently under quarantine.
News24 spoke with Kamohelo Taole from Bloemfontein, who has spent the last six years in China:
“We recently graduated in January, and we were supposed to be home already, but we can’t as the transport system is shut down,” Taole told News24 on Friday.
“No one can enter or exit Wuhan at this moment, including the Chinese. The only way to leave this place is with the help of government authorities, by making plans with the government of Wuhan.”
Taole, who graduated from the Hubei University of Technology, says that the situation exacts some serious mental strain:
“Honestly, this experience is terrifying because we are at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak.
“We understand that the lockdown is a safety measure but it’s damaging us mentally because we spend 24 hours in our rooms, seven days a week and that has been going for more than two weeks now. So, you can imagine how intense this situation is.”
Taole speaks to his parents every day and they are worried about him.
He said he wanted to be evacuated from the area as other international students had been.
Watching the spread of the coronavirus is terrifying enough from the (for now) safety of South Africa, so being in the epicentre of it all cannot be easy.
The South African spoke with 30-year-old teacher Jordan Hill, who has been on lockdown since late January in the Jiangsu province, which is four hours from Wuhan.
Hill says that whenever he leaves his apartment, he has his temperature checked:
“I have isolated myself from pretty much all human contact. I stay away from public places and don’t leave my apartment unless absolutely necessary. If I do, I wear a mask, gloves and take precautions as necessary to reduce the risk of infection…
“There is certainly not a food shortage from what I have experienced. People are scared, expats have evacuated and left their lives behind here for the time being. This is a decision that they have made based on their situation. I, however, have everything I need and I am going to wait this thing out. Netflix, PS4, food. Sorted.”
If you are forced to bunker down for a few weeks (or longer), you can do worse than Netflix and PS4.
Read the rest of what Hill had to say on The South African.
Two weeks ago, speaking with Kieno Kammies on CapeTalk, teacher Amy Pitiway also spoke about the struggle of living on lockdown, calling it “very, very traumatising”.
[imagesource:here] The legend of the 'Lost Hoard' or 'Kruger Millions' begins during th...
Everybody loves a good advertising back and forth. You may remember the famous BMW vers...
[imagesource: Miguel Fernández-Flores / VICE] Around 15 years ago, Mexico launched “...
Ever since his Oprah couch-bouncing incident, the world has been keeping a close eye on To...
[imagesource: Instagram / @dudewithsign] Should we have a call before the Zoom call jus...