There are several things I do whenever I go out. I check my pockets to make sure I have my wallet and mobile phone. I also make sure I have a small container of hand sanitizer. I developed this habit during the 2003 SARS outbreak. This habit stayed with me even after SARS. I learned many lessons during SARS, such as frequently washing my hands, wearing a facemask properly, and discreetly using hand sanitizer after people shake my hand. These lessons were useful during the Covid pandemic. I studiously avoided shaking hands. To studiously avoid doing something means to avoid it in a careful and intentional way.
I would instead do an elbow bump, put my palms together in an Indian-style handshake, or bow like the Japanese. An elbow bump is touching your elbow with another person's elbow. I have attended many social events since returning to Hong Kong for a short visit. Many people shook my hand at these functions. Covid seems to be out of sight, out of mind for them. The expression “out of sight, out of mind” means to quickly forget people or things if they cannot be seen. Covid is “out of sight” because most people no longer wear facemasks. It is “out of mind” because Covid is infecting far fewer people.
Most Hong Kong people have either been vaccinated or have already caught Covid. But Covid is still infecting hundreds of people daily. There is no media coverage of this. I think Hong Kong people should still avoid shaking hands and attending large gatherings. They should wear masks on public transport. I still do that.
每當我外出，都總會做幾樣事情：檢查衫袋，確保我帶了銀包和手機；我也會確保我有一小支酒精搓手液。自從二零零三年爆發沙士以來，我便已建立起這個習慣。這個習慣即使在沙士後也伴隨着我。沙士期間，我學到許多功課，例如要經常洗手，正確戴口罩，以及每次跟人握手後，要謹慎地使用酒精搓手液。這些功課在新冠肺炎疫情期間都很有用。我 studiously avoided握手——to studiously avoid doing something是指周密和刻意地避免做某事。
取而代之的，我會來個碰肘禮（elbow bump），又或是印度式的雙手合十禮，甚或像日本人的彎腰鞠躬。An elbow bump是跟對方碰撞手肘來互相問候。自從我回港短遊以來，出席過許許多多的社交場合。許多人都會在這些活動期間跟我握手。對他們來說，新冠肺炎似乎是 out of sight, out of mind——習語“out of sight, out of mind”的意思是「眼不見，心不念」，當看不見某人或某事，便很快忘記，不作多想了。新冠疫情是“out of sight”、看不見的，因為大部分人早已不再戴口罩；它也是“out of mind” 、被忘掉了的，因為少了許多人感染新冠病毒。