Chronicling the Days – Caroline Vu

In April 2020, we invited writers in Quebec to submit a story of a single day during the strange, uneasy time of coronavirus and pandemic, of social distancing and self isolation, of lockdown and quarantine.

We’re thrilled to announce that these stories have been gathered in Chronicling the Days: Dispatches from a Pandemic (Guernica Press). To learn more and buy the book, please visit

Please also join us on the QWF FB Community page, and let the authors know if their words resonated.

This piece is by Caroline Vu, writing in March, 2020.

Photo: Caroline Vu

Days of Guilt.

I know I did nothing wrong. I did not travel. I did not party. I did not cough in anyone’s face. Yet I feel guilty. I look downward on my way to the grocery store. I wear dark glasses to mask my Asian features. I smile apologetically at the woman on the bus as she shoos me away. By accident, my sanitized fingers had touched her rubber-gloved hands. Her reaction surprises me. I didn’t realize it was such a big deal. The accidental grazing of two gloved hands—I didn’t know it’s the new social sin.

To read the rest of the story, please support our community and check out Chronicling the Days: Dispatches from a Pandemic

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