I’ve landed in Hong Kong after flying from Paris CDG, via London Heathrow. I now have to wait ~8 hours before I get my #COVID19 test results and thus have ample time to tweet about my experience.
At CDG, the @British_Airways check-in staff wore masks and gloves. Masks are mandatory inside the airport. But on the plane to London, and on my next flight to HK, no BA staff wore masks, surprisingly.
The captain on my LHR > HKG flight said there were about 100 of us on the plane. That means the Boeing 777 was at 1/3 of its capacity. Every single passenger (except someone who apparently had special permission to connect to Brunei) will enter some sort of quarantine.
I just went through this, but there were so many steps & stations upon arrival in HK that I’ve forgotten half. I filled in a quarantine order + a health declaration, was made to download an app, received a tracking bracelet, had it registered. Someone checked my phone # worked.
A health dept official officially signed & stamped my quarantine declaration in duplicate. He was nice & friendly, explaining that I could go yumcha on the morning of the 28th. He asked if I had someone to take care of me & if I had a thermometer. When I hesitated, he gave me one
He showed me how to fill in my symptom + temperature tracking table, explained that I needed to fill in another form with the details of my method of transportation home (eg license plate #). Everything was in a manila folder. He told me not to worry & wished me good health.
After receiving my bracelet and my thermometer, I went on through immigration and got my bags as normal. On the other side we were directed onto buses and young men in full protection gear helped load our bags onto the bus.
We were given bright orange lanyards to be marked as people to be tested. The testing and waiting take place in different giant halls at Asia World Expo. A tag # (associated with our test) would eventually be clipped to our lanyard.
After dropping off our bags in one place and getting luggage tags; we got back on the bus as were dropped off at another facility. There we stood in line to get our testing packs. A health worker gave us our tag number, our packs, and explained how to conduct the self-test.
Then we sat and watched a detailed helpful, video on how to conduct the self-test.
Here’s a time lapse of me awkwardly doing my self-test in my booth: I made a “kruuuar” sound as instructed to hock up my deep-throat saliva & spit it into a tube (w/ the help of a paper funnel) and double-bagged it. Several ppl made sure the tube was upright when I handed it in.
I thought someone would swab me and wasn’t expecting a self-test but it was simple enough. When it came time to hock up deep throat spit, I was grateful for the thoughtful courtesy of the private booths.
I had to delete a tweet because I accidentally revealed some personal information, so click through to the rest of the thread:

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More from @laurelchor

Jan 18
Reporting live from the scene where the doomed, allegedly potentially Covid-infected hamsters live: 3 AFCD vans with staff in full hazmat, police officers (including plainclothes ones), police cordons, and camera crews.
The police have blocked off the hazard area and are telling people to cross the road and use the opposite sidewalk
Correction: 2 police vans, 2 AFCD vans (for 2,000 hamsters, though it’s unclear how many are in the shop)
Read 15 tweets
Jan 18
Updating my CV properly for the 1st time since 2006 & I've been thinking a lot about how grateful I am to have cut my teeth as a journalist @CoconutsHK, where I had (almost) free reign to be sassy & salty AF, esp when covering the Umbrella Movement. eg: coconuts.co/hongkong/news/…
It makes me so sad to think that future (and current) young journalists in Hong Kong won't get the chance to grow in an environment where they don't have to worry about whether their words will land them in jail. The loss of potential is beyond measure and unimaginably tragic.
I also had a momentary brain fart where I tried to click on a link in my CV to an old Apple Daily story that featured my little environmental project, which aimed to get people exploring HK's outdoors. The realization when I got an error page hit me like a punch to the gut.
Read 8 tweets
Jan 17
I’m actually struggling to come up with an analogy to explain to those unfamiliar with Chinese culture just how offensive this is. I’m almost laughing at the thought of how my late grandma would react to this… I used to spend hours folding joss paper with her for offerings.
This isn’t nearly as bad in comparison but it reminds me of the time I ordered pad thai in Paris (it was late and I was desperate for Asian food ok) and this is how it showed up.
Read 4 tweets
Jul 1, 2021
Quite the turnout for the rally for Uighurs/Tibet/Hong Kong outside the Chinese Embassy in London for the 100th anniversary of the CCP and the 24th anniversary of the HK Handover. It’s a sharp contrast from the somber day that Hong Kong had.
There’s a man in all yellow and he’s begun leading the HKers to another rally in Chinatown.
Rally starts in half an hour and these are all the people leaving the Chinese embassy protest to head to the next rally.
Read 32 tweets
Jun 9, 2021
I pay attention to trolls bc I’m a masochist but also bc they often represent not uncommon views. This guy who comments on my IG blames protesters for the CCP tightening its grip on Hong Kong *but not the CCP itself*. Image
It’s a hypercynical, hyperpractical belief in the inevitability and inescapability of the CCP’s continued authoritarian rule. They think that HK was doing just fine & that ungrateful protesters who were otherwise enjoying a “decent” quality of life “forced” the CCP to crack down.
It’s a fairly common view amongst older generations & in mainland China: keep your head down, work hard, & accept trade offs on the human rights & democracy fronts in exchange for a stable life and some upward mobility: if no one had complained, things would have stayed the same.
Read 4 tweets
Oct 1, 2020
Sidewalk march happening on Yee Wo St in Causeway Bay despite heavy police presence. #hongkongprotests
And as quickly as it appeared it has dissipated. Some remain standing by bus stops holding up Apple Daily pages in protest. As has been the case for many protests this year, it’s hard to distinguish between shoppers, bystanders and protesters until they begin chanting.
Just saw two young women walk past at group of police. One exclaimed “Eek! It’s dangerous to be next to all these Ah Sirs!”
Read 10 tweets

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