Dear Gaia and Luigi:
Hello from Wuhan. I am Zi Jie, an artist and comics maker who lives in Wuhan.
It is so dim the weather here, and it is already the 24th days of discovering Covid-19, and the same period of time that we stayed at home. I wrote some diaries these days, Mr.MA told me that I should let you guys to have a look. It is a Lian-Huan-Hua style diary, similar to Bande dessinée, the second part is still ongoing. And I try to translate them into English but not so good.
Thanks to Mr.MA, and you all for concerning what is happened here.
Good wishes to both of you.
12 feb 2020
1. I already decided to stay in Wuhan for Spring Festival, one is because this year’s Lunar Year came early, I have works that needed to get done. But because the travelling peak and my parents have been keep asking, I decided to go. On the train back home in December, I have received the screenshot of“SARS” reappears on the group chats for the city. On the 8th of December, a friend from Hong Kong warm me and Xintan to be careful; and on the 14th of December, a friend who’s from Wuhan sent me messages to remind us to be careful. I was in the middle of something and explained the situation to my parents, and how to host my friend Tang Chao.
When I was in the shower and not facing the phone, I decided not to go back to Yulin for Spring Festival.
The flood of information was only a prelude, I could cut out my connections completely, and all the social media from the outside world in a few days and just rest.
2. Apparently there are mistakes.
After the prelude, the turbulent and severe information were drowning Wuhan and the rest of the country to a swirl. The news of lockdown was received at 2 am on January 23rd, 2020, the rush even crashed us night birds in the head.
Relatively speaking, Hankou (a city) is more stable compare to Wuchang (a city), where Xinheng, Xiaowei and I live together. And yet, it is still like we are on a boat in a storm. Where we stuck in there and cannot go out.
3. On the boat, I face a small window. Through dusks and mists, I saw people with flags and trying to send me messages.
Xinheng and Yuanyuan saw her two sisters with sign languages, saying how much food they have stored, they’ve still got milk. Puppy Gege’s boat has been found.
Xinheng’s dad and uncle could go out everyday, Gege is too old and had strokes before, so he didn’t make it.
4. a lot of friends have sent us mails and news with drift bottles. I told my mother every two days what we cooked for food. Xin Heng also sent to her mother the dishes I made.
5. In the storm, there are boats sometimes, and they've gathered together in a circle. Through the window they exchanged information, through the language of flags and signs, they said something about a pirate ship, and ….. There’s a huge wave came over, the man with the flag has to jump off the boat.
6. Let’s hangout on cloud spaces, drink together. Let’s drink! Dong Dong Dong (the sound of drinking)!
There’s a night, the ocean is full of tumbling waves. The weather reporter dropped into the waves.
On that night, all the moments on WeChat were about his safety. Anger and pain was spreading out and rooting inside of people. This earliest warning was trapped in Schrodinger’s ship, between life and death, truth and fiction, he gets up and lies down.
8. Xingheng’s sisters raised a newspaper called Living in the Eye of the Storm.
(On the newspaper, the title says fighters are fighting in the front line, we are also fighting. Sanhuangliang - a type of Chinese medicine - flood the screen.
This is a diary of what they have been through, Xiaobao graphic designed the newspaper and made illustrations. These temporal and moving moments gave us strength and imaginations of new possibilities in this worrying and anxious time.