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Life under quarantine through British repatriate's sketches

08:38 | 08/04/2020

Nguyen Tang Quang, who was studying Master’s degree in the UK, returned to Vietnam on March 17 over coronavirus fear. Quang spent his spare time in 7th Military Region quarantine zone sketching out his vibrant daily life, even though “I’m not a good painter”, he claims.

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“I sketch out around 4-5 paintings every day, each takes around 1 hour to finish. I’ve been drawing for 5 days in a row. I don’t have enough means to draw here, so I just use whatever I could, like a few crayons, a watercolor box, and two pens”, Quang smiled. “Even though they are not fancy or anything, I draw those pictures with all my heart”.

“Just a few days leaving until rehabilitation, honestly, I was quite nervously thinking about being quarantined at first. But what I’ve been experiencing in the last few days was really touching, which I’m very grateful for. Not only me, but other inmates also appreciate this quarantine time”, Quang told Bao moi in a statement.

He said he was lucky enough to stay in 7th Military Region, to be tentatively tended by doctors and soldiers, from health, daily meals to personal needs.

Below are the drawings that Quang's sketched out within 5 days, with captions are his own thoughts.

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

Every morning, the soldiers would bring drinking water, food, daily necessities, etc., up the stair to each room on the 5th floor. Each floor has 11 rooms, accommodating 3-8 people. Anyone can imagine how strenuous it is. But despite the hard work, they always put on a smiling face, very enthusiastic and thoughtful. (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

By lunch time, the soldiers once again step up the stairs, but this time with lunch sets on hands. They would patiently wait for every’s choice, and would carefully jot down if someone is allergic and take care of them wholeheartedly. Some soldiers even save their lunch portion for others “lest they feel hungry and could get rid of the virus”. (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

They keep cleaning up once done with the food distributing thing. I’ve never seen them complaining even though they work pretty hard, plus it’s very hot during this time in Sai Gon. They even give us their phone number in case we need them. Everyone in the quarantine zone loves them. (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

What’s more, they’re very warm and thoughtful. They knock on every door, surprising us with presents and say thank as our terminal days in the place draw near. Each room got two boxes of chocolates yesterday, and today, each of us is given a hand-made keychain in zodiac shape. I was totally taken aback as they remember my zodiac sign and gave me the exact one. (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

Rubbish collection at dawn. There are like “mountains of rubbish”, especially around the 5-story buildings, but the soldiers finish in just a blink of an eye. (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

Doctors would go and check each inmate two times a day. (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
There's one kid who would sit on his suitcase every morning, both to watch the sun and cartoon through the window (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
A group of young men are playing card game (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
Clean the house in spare time (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches

People would normally check their phone or surf the web in the evening (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)

life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
Or lie flat on the floor if they're so tired (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
Reading books is another ideal choice to make use of the time (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
One could also do some "gym" (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Sao Star)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
Inside a room for females (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
life under quarantine through british repatriates sketches
This sketch is pretty much daily timetable inside the quarantine zone (Photo courtesy of Nguyen Tang Quang/ Bao moi)
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Translated by Jasmine Le

Bao moi