My original plan had been to come to Shenzhen stay at the office for a night, then on to Zhuhai, Macao, and Hong Kong before the mandatory 14 quarantine kicked in. I found out about 6 pm that all borders were closing. If I wanted to leave it had to be now.
As it turned out I was not the only person to have this idea.
Despite the ghost town element to the financial district (where my office is) Shenzhen Bay was a cluster fuck of vehicles. Gridlock might usually be the norm, but right now it’s far from it. The traffic was so sad my DiDi. (Chinese Uber) the driver told me to get out and walk back for 20 minutes, for which I duly obliged.
On arrival, big screens were screaming at us in English and Chinese that after midnight it was quarantine. I headed to Chinese immigration where I was handed a health form. The mask makes my glasses steam up and I’d ticked “yes” to having visited Wuhan, the friendly official merely told me to change the form…
I can not describe the madhouse that was in front of me. People push usually but this was utter bedlam. Being a foreigner though I got a different line, which was amazingly quick.
On the Hong Kong side I usually have e-channel which means no need to do immigration, just scan a barcode. For obvious reasons that also was not available.
So, now here I am on a bus to Hong Kong without much more of a plan. I’m sad to have left the people I hold dear to me in China, and indeed China itself, but sadness, alas does not pay the bills.
This is going to screw a lot of people and places economically, I just need to ensure I’m not one of them.
And now, the next part of the journey begins.