A Chinese Problem?

It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.” ~ Audre Lorde

17th February 2020 Weekend Challenge Celebration FOWC History  RDP Evanescent

Chinese new yearThis is my second response to GC and my Weekly Prompts Weekend Challenge Celebration.

Chinese New Year 25th January – Normally this is an important celebratory occasion for my Chinese family. This year, even though (at the time) there were no reported cases of the Coronavirus in Britain, the family made the decision to stay at home and celebrate low key with my son-in-law’s family.

Daughter Louisa explained that because of the high numbers of Chinese families that had already travelled here to the U.K. to visit relatives, and with her inlaws already in poor health, they were reluctant to celebrate with others from the Chinese community.

Scarlett and Lily-Jane Chinese New Year

The youngest two, Scarlett and Lily-Jane dressed appropriately for the occasion. At school, Scarlett gave fortune cookies and red envelopes containing chocolate coins to the children in her class.

Days later, just 30 miles away in a hotel in York, the first two victims in the U.K. (Chinese mother and son) were diagnosed with the virus. I think my family made a sensible choice not to mix with others in the community.

Shortly afterwards, Louisa and family travelled to Dubai for a pre-booked holiday (vacation).

Next weekend, daughter Victoria has planned another family lunch, I suggested we put Louisa and family in quarantine and postpone our family celebrations until they had been home from Dubai for fourteen days. After all history tells us how easily viruses are spread. Everyone assumed I was joking, and the hilarious comments between the family on our group chat were not slow in coming.

Joking aside, Louisa tells us that wherever they went during their holiday, people appeared uneasy to be near them, and her Chinese husband and children were stared at far more than is usual, no longer were they evanescent.

Meanwhile, my friend’s daughter, who works at a prestigious international boarding school in the south of England tells of phone calls from several parents asking for the Chinese students to be removed from the school! Obviously, the request was refused, and apparently, the head was very tempted to add “But do feel free to remove your own!”

In the U.K. as of 16 February, a total of 3,109 people have been tested, of which 3,100 were confirmed negative and 9 positive.

Coronaviruses are common across the world. Typical symptoms of coronavirus include fever and a cough that may progress to a severe pneumonia causing shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. Generally, coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.

Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new strain of coronavirus first identified in Wuhan City, China.” ~ http://www.gov.uk

© SueW-nansfarm.net 2020 Weekend Challenge ‘Celebration’ from Weekly Prompts. Fandango’s One word challenge History and Ragtag community’s evanescent

31 thoughts on “A Chinese Problem?

  1. People can be very unpleasant in situations they don’t understand. What irks me is that a lot of people see the headlines in the media and start drawing their own conclusions. I would have been behind the teacher who wanted to say to the parent, feel free to remove your own children.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. It’s definitely a difficult and delicate situation Sue. The total containment of such a virus(it’s air-born like the flu) is almost impossible…. and along with China’s enormous population(over 1.2 billion), the world’s scientist and Doctor’s are facing quite a task…..

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That information has changed, Ivor, this is the latest we have.

      The new coronavirus isn’t believed to be an airborne virus, like measles or smallpox, that can circulate through the air. “If you have an infected person in the front of the plane, for instance, and you’re in the back of the plane, your risk is close to zero simply because the area of exposure is thought to be roughly six feet from the infected person,”

      Close contact with an infectious person, such as shaking hands, or touching a doorknob, tabletop or other surfaces touched by an infectious person, and then touching your nose, eyes, or mouth can also transmit the virus.

      Makes you want to stay home and not socialise doesn’t it, thank you, Ivor 🙂


    2. Forgot to add – The principal mode of transmission is still thought to be respiratory droplets, which may travel up to six feet from someone who is sneezing or coughing.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I do remember, and I admired their beautiful photographs!

      Daughter Sophie’s ex-husband is Chinese and she shares her older children, her four sons with him. The boys are not keen on being included in the blog! Yet!

      Thank you, Derrick

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Murphy's Law

    The media blow these things out of proportion and scare the daylight out of us. A virus outbreak should certainly be reported so we are aware and can prepare ourselves according, but there’s only so much we can do to protect ourselves. And most of that is just common sense/hygiene.

    Parents asking for Chinese students to be removed from the school…you have to be kidding me!! It reminds me of when AIDS first came to the attention of the media, and people were afraid to be within 10 miles of anyone they “thought” might have it.

    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I remember those days when AIDS was new. So many narrow-minded people, ignorance is unnecessary, especially when health departments issue information and advice on a daily basis.

      Thank you, Ginger 🙂


  4. I was verbally berated over the phone by someone who had called to wish me well in retirement and was disappointed when I told her I had no idea what my ‘plans’ were. ‘Surely you’ll travel!!’ was her comment to me. Then she went on to tell me about the cruise she was going on (on Valentine’s Day–my retirement day) to Norway. The thought of be surrounded by so many people would have made me a bit uncomfortable–but who am I to tell her?! To each his own, but asking for the Chinese students to be removed from school…that is the most ridiculous thing!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My thoughts exactly. These people seem to think that money talks and they should be able to dictate. A dreadful thing to demand.

      I am with you on the travelling, if it’s not necessary right now then don’t take the risk. We are told that the flu kills more people, well, I do t want that either.

      Quite frankly I’ve never understood why it’s assumed we should travel in retirement, it’s never been on my wish list.
      Did you sleep in this morning or did you wake at the usual time?
      Thank you, Lois

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sue, you are absolutely right about the number of deaths from flu. They tend not to be reported. When you consider the population of China, and the number of deaths, the dangers are no where near what the press would have us believe. Not downplaying what is a serious outbreak, and a world wide concern, it is nevertheless another social, and normal media overreaction. (IMHO)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, Peter. Though I have to say that having been hospitalised with breathing problems as a side effect of the flu I am too aware of people who cough and sneeze and I’m always relieved when the season is over. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Good important info, Sue! Thank you for sharing it with us.
    Never know what to believe in the media. I sometimes wonder if they WANT to cause a panic. 😦 😦 😦
    It is sad of all of the elderly and very young who die from all kinds of things every year, including the flu’s, etc. 😦
    PS…your granddaughters are beautiful! One of my adult nieces is Korean and she married a young man from China. His whole family has been in the USA for about 20 years now. An amazing family that I have learned so much from and been so welcomed by. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. To be honest I ignore media hype. I stopped reading the newspapers a while ago and anything I read online I take with a pinch of salt. I watch the reputable BBC news, it reports as it happens without alteration. As for the Corona Virus, I follow the department of health for the latest up-to-date information.

      I agree, it is sad and protecting the vulnerable from flu and other viruses has to be a good thing, it’s not just us, it’s the weakest amongst us that will suffer.

      Thank you for the kind comments about my family and how lovely to have learnt a little about yours. Thank you, Carolyn 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. gc

    A well written and informative article as usual Susan. The term “media hype” is the death knell for anyone who happens to be caught in the latest round of the media’s attempt to drum up readership and not seek informative answers to problems.

    In December when I contracted my own nightmarish “flu” symptoms I contacted the local media advising them of the shabby way in which seniors are treated like cattle and herded into waiting room areas lacking proper ventilation and proper protection from “infectious” people.

    The media station did not investigate the charge, the local board of health strong armed this health clinic to clean up its act and I still suffered many weeks of ill health.

    Labelling one group of folks as “suspect” doe not solve any problems . It only exacerbates fears, hatreds and xenophobic beliefs.

    Thank you for sharing your experiences and thoughts on this matter.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. gc

    Reblogged this on THE MAIN AISLE (c) 2020 and commented:
    Labelling someone or something as the cause celebre of all the modern day troubles that afflict the world is the lazy man/woman’s way to pass the buck for someone else to resolve. In tis article Susan states her case well not only against racial labelling but about familial issues that are close to her as well. A very good read.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Gosh, I think we need to see our commonalities are often. It’s too bad people are freaked about the coronavirus when it’s flu that kills thousands of people every year (and still I meet people who don’t get their flu shots). I’m glad your granddaughters got a good celebration regardless. They’re very cute!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. In the past flu has got me in September before the flu season has kicked off and before I’ve had the vaccination. In the U.K. it’s acknowledged that children are the main spreaders of viruses, they are now vaccinated against flu each year via a nasal spray.

      I too know a few people who refuse to vaccinated against flu.

      People tell me there is too much media hype about the Coronavirus but I’ve seen very little. I’ve heard facts reported on the BBC news and I’ve been following the UK health department information pages.

      The NHS sent all UK adults a list of countries to avoid and stated we must put ourselves in quarantine if we have recently returned from them. My doctors surgery texted all patients information and asked that we do not visit the surgery if we have symptoms, instead they issued a new telephone number.

      This isn’t media hype, this is coming from the professionals, so it does make one wonder if there is more to the virus than meets the eye. Or is the medical profession being sensible and attempting to lessen the load on our already overcrowded hospitals?

      I think I might as well have written a follow up post given the amount I’ve written here! 😂

      The girls are cuties and I thank you so much for saying, Lisa. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. So interesting. Here it is much more in individual hands to get the information needed. The press has reported numbers in various places and the fact that the illness is mild in 80 percent of cases, but there seems to be a lot of focus on it.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Your reply is interesting too. I often wonder if it is the same in other countries, whether we are all given information etc.
        perhaps this in itself is worth another post. I’ll get my thinking cap on.

        You know, I can’t help wondering what mild means, a heavy cold or an illness similar to flu?
        Thank you, Lisa

        Liked by 1 person

      3. They’ve been defining mild here as a bad cold or down for a couple days (rather than hospitalized or dead). That was the CDC director, so I assume you can go by that.

        Liked by 1 person

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