mandag 25. januar 2021

A year from lockdown, Wuhan returns to normal life, but is still haunted by emotional scars

On the surface, Wuhan bustles like a city that has never known a paralyzing 76-day lockdown. At dawn, market vendors busily unload fresh fruits and vegetables. Office workers fill popular eateries during their lunch break. As dusk falls, elderly couples descend on the city's parks, practicing dance moves by the Yangtze River. Red lanterns have been erected around the city in anticipation of the Lunar New Year celebrations.

A year has passed since the central Chinese city of 11 million people was placed under the world's first coronavirus lockdown on January 23. At least 3,869 Wuhan residents eventually died from the virus, which has since claimed more than two million lives around the globe.

The world was stunned when flights, trains and buses leaving Wuhan were canceled, highways were blocked and people were ordered to stay in their homes, relying on officials and volunteers for daily necessities. Initially, it was difficult for patients, families and even some healthcare workers to reach hospitals.