American teaching in China shares experience of living life during coronavirus outbreak

By Dave Marner, Managing Editor
Posted 3/18/20

Restaurants and bars in Franklin County were ordered closed as of midnight Tuesday by commissioners there.

This follows similar action in the St. Louis region and all of Illinois earlier this …

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American teaching in China shares experience of living life during coronavirus outbreak

Posted

Restaurants and bars in Franklin County were ordered closed as of midnight Tuesday by commissioners there.

This follows similar action in the St. Louis region and all of Illinois earlier this week.

David Ryan, a Chicago-area native teaching in China, has experienced the coronavirus outbreak first hand. He left his apartment in mid-January and holed up until early March in a hotel in Bangkok, Thailand. He’s been teaching his students ever since through online platforms.

“I’m no expert, just a dude who’s been in an already-ravaged country,” Ryan shared with friends on a personal Facebook page.  “But the sooner you accept this, 100 percent, the better for your own state of mind and others’ health.”

He shared what he’s witnessed living in the nation of origin for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) disease.

“How long are we going to have to keep this up — the closed schools, working from home, six feet of personal space and zombie-apocalypse empty streets?” the musician and teacher asked.

“The best and most honest reply, according to epidemiologists and virologists, is simple: ‘It depends.’ It’s not going to be over anytime soon — a matter of months rather than weeks.”

He recently returned to his apartment complex in Xiamen, Fujian. He noted “Some kind of hyperquarantine/disinfectant setup” was installed outside his apartment complex when he returned.

Cab drivers’ cars “now have floor-to-ceiling plastic separators between the driver and the passenger.”

He’s been watching the disease spread across the globe. Reading the news. He has experienced the temperature taking each time he entered his apartment complex before leaving to get away from the immediate threat which was just blocks away when the virus first became daily news in his neighborhood.

“It’s kind of driving me crazy here to see such blasé reactions to this,” he message this week. “And it’s not just in the US. It’s an inherent human thing. Be safe and be well yourself!”

Images he’s shared from his experience are from moments in a strange time. He hopes what he’s been through there doesn’t reach the rural areas of his homeland but fears it will in time. “Be safe and well,” he wrote this past weekend. “If it’s anything like here, it will be eerie and disconcerting to see.”

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