TOKYO — Hidden away in her cabin, Masako Ishida reckons she doesn’t face a lot threat from the coronavirus that has stalked her cruise ship, forcing an onboard quarantine of three,700 passengers and crew members in the port metropolis of Yokohama.
Ms. Ishida, 61, is attempting to see the vibrant facet as she faces two lengthy weeks caught inside the ship. She has a window to gaze out of, in contrast to some passengers. She, like her two touring companions — her husband and her mom, each of their 80s — is wholesome and never in want of any medicines.
By no means, although, is that this going to be simple.
After the virus struck, confusion got here rapidly. Ms. Ishida mentioned she first discovered that her two-week cruise is likely to be prolonged not from the crew, however from an article she learn on-line on Monday. That report mentioned a man from Hong Kong who had disembarked from the ship, the Diamond Princess, in his house metropolis on Jan. 25 had examined optimistic for the virus.
When she requested some crew members about it, they confirmed the information, she mentioned. But it took a whereas for different passengers to study that they could have been uncovered to the virus, which has killed tons of in China.
“There wasn’t much information,” Ms. Ishida mentioned from the ship on Wednesday throughout a name through Facebook.
The Diamond Princess, which has 13 decks and in regular occasions gives leisure like motion pictures below the stars and dwell musical productions, arrived in Yokohama on Monday night time and stayed at anchor for 2 days whereas the authorities determined what to do.
Japanese well being employees have begun screening 273 individuals who displayed signs or got here into contact with the contaminated man. So far, 20 of them, together with passengers from Japan, Hong Kong, Australia and the United States, have been discovered to be contaminated. They had been being taken to hospitals.
All three,700 individuals on board acquired an preliminary well being screening. Ms. Ishida mentioned the authorities who carried out it didn’t appear to take it very critically.
When they first took her husband’s temperature, she mentioned, the studying was 32 levels Celsius, or 89.6 levels Fahrenheit, effectively beneath a regular temperature of 98.6.
Ms. Ishida requested them to retake it. The second studying was 35 levels Celsius, or 95 Fahrenheit.
“They didn’t put the thermometer into our ears properly,” Ms. Ishida mentioned.
She has additionally felt the chaos of the sudden quarantine at mealtimes. Breakfast, delivered by employees members in goggles and masks, didn’t arrive till nearly 2 p.m. Then lunch got here proper on its heels.
Nevertheless, the crew members are “serving guests with a smile,” Ms. Ishida mentioned. “That’s giving us some peace of mind.”
The ship is steaming again out to sea so it could empty its bilge and complement its water provides, its proprietor, Princess Cruises, mentioned on its web site. It will return to port on Thursday to take on meals and different provides because it carries on with the two-week quarantine, which covers the incubation interval of the coronavirus.
Ms. Ishida and her household get pleasure from cruises and had been particularly trying ahead to stress-free aboard the Diamond Princess because it wended its means from Yokohama to Kagoshima, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Taiwan and Okinawa.
Now, as an alternative of taking a dip in the freshwater swimming pools or going on a “Chocolate Journey,” Ms. Ishida and her household are whiling away their time taking part in video games on their tablets, studying, watching motion pictures and talking to household and pals utilizing the ship’s now-free Wi-Fi.
Judging by social media, different passengers trapped on board have had tougher moments.
In a Facebook video, David Abel, a passenger from Britain, said on Wednesday morning that he was concerned about how the quarantine might affect his diabetes, saying that he had not eaten in many hours and was fearful that he could fall into a coma.
The problem was resolved, he said, after staff members aboard the ship responded to a flood of emails expressing concern about his condition.
Earlier that morning, he had been more optimistic. As an announcement about the quarantine came over a loudspeaker, Mr. Abel said that the passengers would be confined to their cabins and that he was looking forward to the free time.
“Most of my day will be spent writing and researching and so on,” he said, adding, “What my bar bill is going to be, goodness only knows.”
For Ms. Ishida, her biggest worry is about the toll that being stranded on board for such a long time will take on her family.
Still, things could be worse. The last time she went on a cruise, she said, everyone caught the flu.