Xinyang Normal University for the Spring Festival 2020
DOSTER CHARLES SIMEON
I am a foreigner who came to China 18 years ago, so you might say China is my second home. For the last five years I have lived in Xinyang, (Henan Province, China, PRC) where I have held a teaching position at Xinyang Normal University.
The people of China are customarily very happy, harmonious and peaceful. The Spring Festival in 2020 approached, and the people of Xinyang Normal University were preparing to rejoice the coming of the traditional "Chinese lunar new year " as in previous years. It was the hope of the officials and staff of Xinyang Normal University to express their love and blessing of teachers, friends and students to herald-in, “the warmth of spring", and commemorate the traditional spring activities.
The Chinese Spring Festival is normally a celebration of family, friends and visitors with tenderness and feasting on Chinese dumplings. Unfortunately, we have had an unusual 2020 Spring Festival.
Sadly, the novel coronavirus epidemic is assaulting the gentle people of China and is taking its toll. In response the management, officials and staff of Xinyang Normal University (Where I live and work) Immediately became proactive to protect all the people including their guest and visitors. The novel coronavirus has proven to be a deadly health threat. We are deeply saddened for those unfortunate people who have died and others who are at risk in this difficult time. We… myself and my colleagues, have experienced caring and warmth, extended to us by the school leaders every day. The Management and staff of Xinyang Normal University care for us foreigners as if we were their family members. The administrators and staff at Xinyang Normal University have sacrificed their own time to reunite and enjoy their families. The administrators and staff, labor, work every day to be helpful, and assist members of the University, community, visitors and foreigners. It is as-if we all, are family.
The Chinese people have a tenacious an enterprising spirit. As the Chinese built the Great Wall so many centuries ago, they are capable of similar Iron-will determination today in the modern world. The high-risk areas for the novel coronavirus epidemic are amazingly well quarantined and anti-epidemic precautions have been established throughout China. Materials have been supplied without interruption by various entities and localities, demonstrating China's strength and spirit. It took only ten days for China to build two hospitals and put them into use immediately.
The Chinese have declared war on the novel coronavirus epidemic. In ancient times of war Chinese warriors wore robes. Today the heroes wear the white robes and lab coats of doctors, nurses, orderlies, and the common worker. The unity of the Chinese people is in their blood and deeply engraved in their spirit. "When troubles occur at one spot, help comes from all quarters."
In January 21 of this year, I came down with an illness. The officials of Xinyang Normal University were very concerned as to my health. Of course, there were concerns that I may… be infected, with the coronavirus. So, due to the concern for my health and welfare my supervisor along with her superiors decided to have me sent to the hospital by ambulance. Well, it was proven that I did not have the coronavirus, and I recovered from my illness. Xinyang Normal University provided a car to take me to my apartment. Since then, I have been in my apartment under quarantine conditions. This is necessary for my protection. It’s not just me; all of us foreign and Chinese teachers come under the protection of this quarantine. Are students stay at home so they won’t be spreading any infection. We give our lessons via the Internet. I personally believe that these measures are necessary for everybody’s protection, for the purpose of stopping the spread of this potentially deadly disease.
Certain staff-members of Xinyang Normal University, have groceries delivered to my apartment, as well as medications and anything else I need. The university and my supervisors covered the expense of everything, I suspect that officials and staff have paid for everything, out of their own pockets. But I am not sure. I have only been told not to worry about the money right now. This goes to show the concern and caring of the people and staff with Xinyang Normal University.
I know that my own country has made efforts to evacuate foreign citizens from China. But I haven’t heard anything about other countries offering help to China in the handling of this pandemic health threat. I do know about the World news report concerning “the Wuhan nurses' plea for international medics to help fight the coronavirus”. I have heard some critical remarks from international news sources about China’s handling of this dangerous disease. Many people worry after watching the negative news reports, but I think that, there has not been enough help offered from the international community. The coronavirus could become a threat to everybody… internationally. I personally believe that, when your neighbor’s house is on fire, you don’t stand around and criticize the way he fights the fire. You join in the bucket brigade to help your neighbor put out the fire. I strongly suspect that misconceptions and/or havoc may occur due to irresponsible news media. I think it’s best, sometimes, to not believe everything you hear in the news.
I think it is good to pray that China will overcome the difficulties caused by this epidemic as soon as possible. I think that it is best and more importantly that the nations of the international community contribute, and be helpful in Chinas war against the novel coronavirus.
外籍教师DOSTER CHARLES SIMEON
通过这次疫情，我感觉到，中国人民具有顽强进取的精神。 许多世纪前中国人修建了长城，在现代世界中他们一样具备钢铁般的意志。 新型冠状病毒流行的高风险地区以令人惊叹的方式得到有效隔离。全国各地都建立了防疫措施。各地方源源不断地提供物资，彰显了中国力量和精神。中国仅用了十天时间就建成了两家医院并立即投入使用。