Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Lensman Do Anh Vu takes to the streets of Hoi An town to experience the unusual lull caused by social distancing amid Vietnam's second Covid-19 wave.

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Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Vu, a resident of Hoi An, created the photo series from July 30 to August 7, the first week after the ancient town in Quang Nam Province deployed social distancing measures due to the country’s new Covid-19 outbreak.

Quang Nam is now Vietnam’s second biggest Covid-19 hotspot with 81 cases confirmed since July 25 when the country recorded the first domestic case in over three months in neighboring Da Nang City, its epicenter.

The above picture depicts a quiet day by Hoai River on An Hoi Street, currently under lockdown.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

A street vendor on her bicycle passes the Pagoda Bridge.

A national relic that appears on VND20,000 ($0.86) bills, the bridge is an iconic landmark of the 400-year-old central town.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Soldiers spray Nguyen Thai Hoc Street with disinfectant.

A total 17 streets and alleys, including several public spaces and venues designated for a high school graduation exam, were disinfected after the Ministry of Health confirmed new coronavirus cases in the town.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Souvenir shops on Nguyen Thai Hoc Street remain closed for business.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Most locals have stayed home and make sure to wear masks when venturing out.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Hai Ba Trung Street is just as empty.

Vu said both Hoi An residents and tourists have been well complying with Covid-19 prevention protocols to protect themselves and the community.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Hoi An’s iconic yellow-painted houses, usually packed with visitors, are doused in a melancholic air.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

A street vendor tries her luck on Phan Chu Trinh Street.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

A sanitation worker with trash bins attached to her bike cycles down Tran Phu Street.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

Near An Hoi Bridge that crosses Hoai River, two sanitation workers collect trash at 7 a.m. on August 6. On the bridge, a makeshift tent serves as a checkpoint along locked down An Hoi Street in Minh An Commune which has recorded Covid-19 cases.

“I know every street and corner of Hoi An. Though we are dealing with Covid-19, I take a stroll around the old town each morning to take pictures of daily life, making sure to wear a mask,” Vu said.

Hoi An basks in social distancing glow

A section of Nguyen Thai Hoc Street reflected in a puddle.

Authorities have set up automatic disinfection chambers at Hoi An Market and An Hoi Square, encouraging residents to wear masks, clean their hands and maintain a distance from each other.

Quang Nam Province on Thursday decided to extend the suspension of “non-essential” services until further notice.

Vietnam’s Covid-19 count currently stands at 905, including 462 active cases. Of the 905, 428 are domestic cases recorded since July 25. Twenty patients have died.

Photos by Do Anh Vu

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