Our Stories: Just one international student alone in quarantine


A typical meal from what’s handed out in quarantine. They arrive at set times during the day.


I originally thought that I would be able to choose a hotel at the end of spring break; however, I was transferred to a different one in awful conditions. I lived in a double-bed room without an air-conditioner or a window, and it was still a bit cold in Shanghai. The WiFi and VPN were of low quality, so I could not have fluid Zoom calls or play any video games. I usually slept for 12 hours per day; however, I had to get my breakfast at 7:00, lunch at 11:00, and dinner at 5:00 every day. (They were distributed to us). One day, I asked for more meat, but I got rejected. Several nurses knocked on my door twice-a-day to check my body temperature, and I was not allowed to go out of my room.

There was a camera in the corridor, and if I had been caught by it, I would be held responsible legally. Inside my room, there was a dirty water basin without a toothbrush, toothpaste, or hair conditioner. We were not permitted to order food because we had to limit contact with the outside world. Despite this, the hotel staff secretly gave me my packages from my mom. After living here for long enough, I took a COVID-19 test. I was able to fly back home.

Currently, I am in home quarantine for seven days. After that, I will be allowed to go out of my house and be able to see people, with limits, for another seven days. After this, I will be free.