Even though lockdown in Hong Kong has been more lax compared to other countries, I haven’t been out in almost a month. Most of my connection to the outside world has been through Deliveroo (food delivery service), and I’ve become used to staying at home. Although my school has allowed students back on campus, I still feel uneasy going back. I see my friends and classmates posting on Snapchat, and they are definitely not one meter apart. I think it’s hard to regulate the social distancing rules, especially when people haven’t seen their friends in five months.
Honestly, I like Zoom classes better. I don’t have to wake up at 6:00 am to go to school. All I have to do is wake up a few minutes before class starts and have my breakfast during my first class. At first, I had a hard time adjusting to life with coronavirus. I felt so trapped and restless in my house. But as I transitioned into my now “normal” day, I realise that I have more freedom to explore what I want to do with my extended free time.
I know that this is a luxury. Fortunately, my parents are allowed to work from home and their jobs are not jeopardised because of the coronavirus. However, my dad owns a small business and he is quite worried about his staff. They’re still making revenue, but he’s unsure how many people he can continue to support. Especially with the Hong Kong protests because of the new law from China, it might continue to decrease business opportunities. I think this is where people have mixed views on the Hong Kong protests. I can understand why people are out on the streets protesting, but on the other hand, it does impact the economy— especially small businesses. We don’t like to say it, but money does matter. It puts food in our mouths and sustains our lifestyles.
Anyway, my brother recently graduated from university. Although we had to watch him receive his diploma online, I was still so proud to see him reach this significant milestone in his life. It’s moments like these that are important. Right now, we’re surrounded by such despair and isolation that we need to hold onto these moments to remember that there’s still hope.
Written by: Naomi Katayama