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#COVIDCatLady, Day 61

Life in Shanghai is very much back to normal, still masked, much less sanitized. I still smell bleach in the morning when I walk out my door, the metal gate downstairs is still regularly cleaned. Restaurants and office buildings are no longer registering people when they walk in. My favorite theater, The Pearl, has reopened for business. They do movie and steak nights and have their house band doing tribute concerts again. Maybe there will be a cabaret show there again, soon. Today marks the 5th anniversary of Tigger living with me. So I guess it’s also the anniversary of my first step towards Cat Ladyship. This past weekend was Tomb Sweeping Festival, a time to remember and pay respects to our ancestors. This year, it’s been appropriated as a day of remembrance for those lost to this virus. The deceased are now referred to as martyrs, including Dr. Li, the whistleblower who died of COVID, but for just one night, he inspired Chinese netizens to demand freedom of speech. At 10am on Saturday, the air raid sirens came on for 3 minutes. And all I could remember were the days when China’s military threat was a pressing concern for Taiwan. Air raid drills were a common occurrence in my elementary school. We’d line up outside our classroom and move in rows into the basement. We were told to press our ears with our thumbs and shield our eyes with the other fingers. Because the bombs might blind and deafen us.

I thought bombs did more than that.

Are you are martyr when you die for a cause that was never your choice?
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