Everything was normal until mid of December 2019. Christmas and Chinese New Year were approaching. Work had stopped in the town that I stay in China, and people had started to move to their hometown. I decided to stay back in China during the holidays to work on a few new things. End of December, the atmosphere was getting changed with news of the spread of the invisible enemy of humanity- Coronavirus.
I witnessed the lockdown of China (my second home) and many sudden changes in life. This is where everyday things started to become abnormal, and abnormal was the new normal in life. Rules of life were changing faster than the speed of thoughts. No plans worked.
The Indian government announced to restrict international flights from the 22nd of March. I had two days to reach or regret not getting home at the time when my family needed me the most. I booked the next available flight and reached India. Never prior to this, I had such an unplanned journey. The moment I reached New Delhi, the policy of compulsory quarantine for 14 days was announced. I was still 1500+ km from my home, but accessible.
My quarantine period was yet to end, and a nation-wide lockdown was announced for 21 days. China also stopped the entry of international passengers. I was stuck in between my home and second home. My plans needed alteration once again. My hometown was the nearest place for me to go (250 km), and reached there after the mandatory quarantine period ended. Also, I had to be under self-isolation for 14 days, but I was much more relaxed. Stayed there for 45 days (never I had stayed so long after 5 years of my age). I was remarkably close to nature. Few peacocks had become my friends and visited me every evening. It was a new experience in life.
Infection in India was spreading, and travel was risky. To explore opportunities and learn more about my home state (province), I shifted to Jaipur, India’s most beautiful city. There is an old saying, “If you haven’t seen Jaipur, you haven’t seen anything.” The city looked more attractive due to the lack of traffic. I got an opportunity to celebrate the festival of “Raksha Bandhan” after 20 years with my sister and brother-in-law, a homeopath practitioner. Her medical skills also helped me to stay infection free due to her medicines.
China had started allowing people with special invitation letters, and my letter was expected to be issued at any moment. The next step was to get a visa from the Chinese embassy in New Delhi. I shifted to New Delhi and applied for a visa as soon as I received the letter. The most challenging part was traveling to China, and luckily the Indian Government planned repatriation flights for Indians stuck in China.
Suddenly life started to move in a positive direction, but I could still not decide whether to leave for my second home or reach home and stay with my family for a few days. The situation’s seriousness made me overcome my emotions and start planning my journey back to my second home. By this time, I had realized that I could not wait for a second chance for anything for the rest of my life and have started taking all kinds of measures to prevent missing an opportunity.
To get a health declaration for endorsed from the Embassy of China at New Delhi, I had to submit a test report of samples submitted 120 hours before the flight. To prevent any kind of delay, I got myself tested at 3 different places (this also made sure that I was free from infection). I did the same thing for my test report of the sample before 48 hours of the flight. All the reports were negative, and it built my confidence to continue my journey.
When I share my experience, in brief, I am in the middle of my mandatory quarantine period of 14 days in Ningbo, China, with the hope of reaching back my second home, the place where this journey started from. Never before this, I have come to China with such a heavy heart as I could not meet my parents, wife, kids, brother, nephew, and so many friends.
I came close to many things during this period of 9 months, which went ignored before. Made new friends, filtered old-ones, changed my lifestyle, the way I thought, etc. I have a feeling of retaking birth.
Things that were helpful during my journey.在我旅途中有用的东西。
My mobile kitchen and food. 我的移动厨房和食物。
Devices that helped me to mentally.有助于我精神上的装置。
For peace of mind. 为了安心。
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