Dutch DJ Mike Williams is back in Asia for the second time since the beginning of the pandemic. He did a stint in Taiwan in 2020 which saw him sit two weeks in quarantine, and now he’s back in China for another two weeks quarantine before going off on tour in a country that has been relatively unaffected by the pandemic when it comes to day-to-day life, despite being where the novel coronavirus was first detected.
“Last year in Taipei was amazing,” says Mike. “The quarantine was difficult but we managed! Luckily I was together with my tour manager at that time. Now it’s different, the rules in China Mainland are a bit different and my tour manager is not with me this time, unfortunately, so it’s only me in a hotel room haha! But being back on the road again feels amazing and can’t wait for all the upcoming shows.”
“I think good preparation is really important. Bring a lot of books, download series and films on your computer and bring your Playstation or Xbox too! Also, make a goal beforehand what you wanna accomplish for yourself. Maybe you wanna start learning a new language? You have enough time to do stuff you normally don’t do, so make the best of it!”
While at home last year, Mike’s Instagram has been flooded with videos of him playing Master Chef, even comically calling his new passion Mike Grilliams for a short IG series. So we started talking to Mike about food (I mean, it’s the obvious place to start when you’re talking about Asia), and it quickly turned to the outrageous things that he was served during quarantine in China. Would you survive Mike’s epicurean (or not) quarantine experience in China? His neighbour, apparently, either didn’t survive or packed his own food because his food was left untouched outside his door.
Here are the five most outrageous things Mike Williams ate while quarantining in China.
Cold noodles with a boiled egg for extra proteins
"Well, the choice of food in the quarantine hotel here in China is not that big. Pretty much only local food. Most of the time for lunch I get noodles, but there’s not a lot in there. So in the morning, I get a boiled egg, which I save for the noodles. I just cut the egg into smaller pieces and throw it in the noodles. Sometimes when the lunch is cold already, because they put it in front of your door and you don’t know when, I put everything in a bag and in the bathroom sink with boiling water so it gets hot again! Smart, right?"
A tower of yoghurt
"Also, the hotel adds a small yoghurt to every meal each day. But one a day for me is enough, so I save the other two and add them to my beautiful tower stack of yoghurt. They can re-use it when I get out of here haha!"
A croissant with a cookie inside
"At a certain point, my local tour manager here got me some cookies, fruits and croissants to eat. My peanut butter jar was already empty but I still wanted to put something on the croissant; a cookie! Those lotus cookies are amazing haha. So that’s how you discover new food combinations during quarantine."
Bread with peanut butter all day
"I brought peanut butter from home. One of the few things I really miss when I’m on tour. It’s something I always have at home. So together with some of my favourite tea, I put a full jar in my suitcase, and I’m glad I did! Calvé is the best brand in my opinion. Super dutch, but super good!"
An egg warming up in the sink
And again, coming back to the magic sink. I don’t have a microwave or oven in my hotelroom and I mean, warm boiled eggs are the best. Who wants a cold egg, right? So I put one egg at the time in the sink, get some boiling water and there you go! Easy and effective.