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The Stories

Z., 23, a student in Hiroshima, Japan

“每一天差不多醒着的时间都想跟妈妈开着视频,担心他们出门,担心他们感染,担心他们出现症状。[…] 1,2月份,我担心家人却只能靠视频确认他们是否安好。3,4月份,家人担心我也只能靠视频消减担忧。除了互通电话报个平安,我们能为彼此做的事情几乎没有。[…] 打发独处时间变成了一门艺术。 但似乎更多的是庆幸,还好我还活着,身边的人还活着。一切都还有变好的可能性。”

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J.B., 79, a retired university professor in Avondale, AZ

“Our eldest Grandson’s a true hero. One of the ‘Red Vests’ managing the ‘Front-End’ of our local grocery store he calms irate customers who don’t want to comply with quarantine and rationing regulations. He’s been continuously exposed to Covid-19 every day for months”

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R.A., 57, a domestic helper in Hong Kong

“Swerte ako 4 days bago maglockdown sa Pilipinas naibook ako nang mabait Kong amo nang Cathay Pacific at nakabalik dito sa Hongkong. Pagbalik ko dito stay room din tuwing holiday dahil sa pandemic na lumalaganap nagkaroon na Rin nang takot kasi di mo alam or makikita Ang kaaway mo. So para makasiguradong walang virus na makuha sa labas mas pinili Kong manatili na lang sa room mo at sa kaligtasan narin nang mga amo mo.”

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E.A., 19, a student in Sun City, CA

“…This pandemic has ripped apart the façade of what seemed to be a good economy; in reality, this “good economy” was built upon the people who are now disproportionately dying and with no healthcare. I beg my fellow Americans to look at this inequality sternly; why do we have such contempt when we call it out when in reality we’ve pretending like it didn’t exist at all. I have grown so increasingly frustrated to see people think about themselves when I see people that remind me of my father and sisters die on the news for having to work…”

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D.G., 60, a business owner in Olympia, WA

“I read recently that during this Pandemic we have all been in the same storm but not necessarily in the same boat. For this reason I quickly realized that I needed to give space to each person in whatever place they found themselves in. The Bible says, ‘My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.’…”

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A., 26, from a location in the United States

“…They say no man is a island. But I sure feel like one. And im surprisingly ok with it. At work ive always pretty much been in my own little corner and now, im actually alone in my little corner . it feels nice to have some peace and quiet for once. But of course i would be lying if i said i didn’t feel lonely at times…”

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N.S., 62, an in-home caregiver in Sammamish, WA

“…My boyfriend and I have been in quarantine at home since the middle of March. The two of us have chosen to be extra cautious because he is Disabled. […] The crazy thing about that is that in some ways the “stay at home” part of this pandemic is not so difficult. Even so we have had to make some tough decisions and some life changes. The most difficult was putting on hold any assistance from outside Caregivers…”

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Life in Quarantine: Witnessing Global Pandemic is an initiative sponsored by the Poetic Media Lab and the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis at Stanford University.

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