Ruyu Zhang in Taiyuan & Hubei: vive la technologie et la réalité virtuelle!

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  • Le 17 avril 2020
Ruyu Zhang (IMM 18) is Press & Communications Officer at the French Consulate in Wuhan (hence she speaks excellent French!). Although she was on vacation in her home town of Taiyuan (Shanxi province in northern China) when lockdown was declared, she remained in close contact with her colleagues and friends in Wuhan. Ruyu is a music lover and says that to an extent, music - especially classical - helped her through lockdown.
How was the situation managed in Wuhan?
Most people did not leave their homes until the restrictions were lifted at he end of March. Many people experienced extreme fear and anxiety at the beginning of the confinement because that was the hardest time for every one: lack of medical apparatus in hospitals, difficulties buying food and limited options and stocks on shopping apps, frequent psychological problems, ignorance of the situation… As time went by, these problems were partially resolved and the situation improved daily.
The ones that we must never forget are those who sacrificed their personal health and safety and put their own lives at risk to protect others. They ensured that daily life running during the pandemic: doctors, nurses, other healthcare workers and volunteers of residential communities.
And in Taiyuan?
Even though Taiyuan was much less affected than the epicenter of Covid-19, the local control and prevention mesures against the spread of the virus were very strict and reassuring. As I returned from Hubei in the end of January, my family and I could not get in contact with anyone else for at least 28 days (double quarantines) even for shopping. The staff of our residence put the food and stuff that we ordered in advance in front of the door, which is called “non contact delivery”. 
What measures do you think worked the best?
Keeping social distancing in case of necessary outdoor activities. Wearing a mask and disinfecting the surfaces of everything we touch.
How did you keep in touch with your family and friends during confinement?
My parents and I were home all together. I kept in touch with my friends on WeChat.
What advice would you give to fellow alumni in France during lockdown?
Music heals the world to some extent! For which who are classical music fans I highly recommend The Digital Concert Hall of the Berliner Philharmoniker, it’s now free for everyone :
Try out a new activity would help you being refreshed after a long day at work from home. For some of us we have to to find some way to avoid a sedentary lifestyle. After the confinement they may change to some new passion in your future life.
Talk regularly to your friends and share the feelings about what you saw on the news. It’s a simple and effective way to relieve stress caused by confinement.
What did you learn about yourself during this period?
Family and friends are the most important treasure for me and I should cherish every single minute with them. Both physical and psychological health are important, don’t stop working out at home.
How are you preparing to return to work/or going back to the office?
I just received the notification and the instructions concerning the return to work in Wuhan and will go back there shortly. We were told that every corner of our office would be rigorously disinfected.
Are there any new habits that you gained during your confinement that you will continue to use?
I tried to learn cooking traditional dishes of my hometown with my mother (the results were not always satisfying but eatable :-D) Also I have started to enjoy seeing the online classical music concerts/visiting museum online, vive la technologie et la Réalité Virtuelle!
Apart from following domestic news, I stay informed on the latest international especially french news by listening to Franceinfo, not only because my daily work requires me to do so but also this is definitely the essential way to know what happened in the world in the time when we are unconnected with people physically.


Gare de Wuhan le 22 janvier, tout le monde a un masque (la veille du confinement de la ville)

Dans le train Wuhan-Taiyuan, gel désinfectant

A un supermarché de Taiyuan pendant le confinement, il n'y a pas beaucoup de monde, masque obligatoire

Je me suis promenée dans un parc de Taiyuan il y a quelques jours, le confinement est progressivement levé et le printemps arrive

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