Day 34 of Shanghai Lockdown
We were supposed to be out a month ago.
I have left my compound three times. First, when I read the Shanghai Municipal official announcement that my neighborhood had been designated as “precautionary,” which was supposed to mean I was free to walk around my “sub-district.” I came home to find the gates locked.
Another time, to deliver a few things to my boyfriend, 3 blocks away, including medication that are impossible to obtain during lockdown. (Oh yeah, you can't get any sort of fever reducer now without a prescription and real name registration.)
I'm friendly with the compound security guard now, and he let me out for a little walk around the block this afternoon. Weeds are now growing through the sidewalk tiles. Piles of boxes everywhere. A couple of restaurants in my area have reopened, but for online bulk orders only.
I co-hosted an online marathon reading of Old Man and the Sea tonight, and around 8 'clock, people started banging on woks and pots outside.
“Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with that there is”
― Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea
Oh but my man, we've been doing that for over a month.
In China, psychiatric medication have to be prescribed and picked up in person. Whatever telehealth system that’s been set up, pre or during lockdown, don’t apply. Mind you, there are much worse medication to be without during lockdown.
I have a Concerta prescription for ADHD. And what are normally manageable side effects (faster heart rate, blood pressure, sweating, tension), which I accept as a reasonable trade-off, have become a physiological ramp up that send me straight into an anxiety attack during lockdown. I’m hoping that once lockdown is lifted, my body will respond to the medication normally again. But for now, I’m giving up on being productive.
My writing has suffered. With the massive influx of information… Every day there seems to be some fresh new hell… The dead corgi, kids being separated from their parents, people without rations, people struggling to go get chemo or dialysis, delivery driver dying in an accident, workers sleeping in shops and warehouses… There were camping tents outside my favorite restaurant, a block away from me.
A friend just went into a quarantine camp yesterday, separated from her infant son. Her self test had been negative for over a week, and they refused to re-test her before taking her away. Another friend was accosted in her own neighborhood, some woman sprayed her and her daughter with disinfectant.
But oh, I have a new cat, sort of. Did I mention? I feel like my brain is mush. Her name is Aby, short for The Abyss.