We are Chiara and Reham, from Italy and Egypt.
We would love to share our story, which can bring a bit of positivity and optimism during these difficult moment we are all living.
First of all, we want to thank Couchsurfing, without which this story wouldn’t have existed.
So let’s start from the beginning.
We met in Kuala Lumpur almost 10 days ago, on the CS hangout, just one week before Malaysia was put on locked down.
Reham lives and works in Kuala Lumpur, Chiara has been traveling by herself for almost 8 month around South East Asia.
We ended up in a hangout with a bunch of fellow travelers and we had a great time all together.
It was incredible how we all bonded in just few hours!
From being strangers to friends, it’s just a heartbeat away.
So the next day we all decided to spend the weekend on a remote island in Malaysia, just to get clear our minds from all the overwhelming Coronavirus news.
After not even half a day on the paradise island, where the Coronavirus hadn’t stepped foot yet, the news, that we all feared, arrived: Malaysia would have got into quarantine in two days.
The day after we rushed to Kuala Lumpur in a big hurry, scared of getting stuck on the island.
Almost all hostels and hotels in the city would have closed as well. Chiara didn’t know where to go and couldn’t afford a room by herself in a hotel.
Reham was so kind and offered to host us both at her place, in her own room.
Since the 18th of March we have been sharing the quarantine, living in the same small bedroom, cooking and eating the same food.
We have been going through these dark times together, fighting the loneliness and supporting each others as much as we can.
At the end of the day, we are two foreigners in a foreign country, away from our respective families and friends.
Because of the Coronavirus a lot of people, especially travelers, got stuck in a country that it is not theirs with no place to stay or friends to be with.
Nobody should be alone right now.
We felt so lucky that we found each other in a such unexpected way.
That’s why we are so grateful to Couchsurfing, which allowed us to meet and, eventually, to keep each others’ company during the quarantine in Malaysia.
Loneliness is probably one of worst side effects caused by the spread of the Coronavirus.
We thought our story could give some hope to people alone out there, forced into the quarantine.
It might sound cheesy, but we are stronger if we all help each other out.
Let’s hope we will be able to travel again soon and meet all the amazing people out there!
A big hug,