Check out these quarantivities!

Graphic by Cate Roser ’21/Staff

When COVID-19 locked down the country back in March, many people struggled to fill their time. Then, in-person school closed and was replaced with mostly asynchronous learning. Sports were cancelled and clubs and extracurricular activities went virtual, this caused many students to find themselves with a lot of unstructured time on their hands. To make use of these hours, many LM students picked up new hobbies. Now that a new, fresh school year has begun, new interests have appeared among the LM student body as COVID-19 continues to spread throughout the country.

As the country’s cases climb to over 6.7 million and the death count rises to 198,000, more and more activities become available (Johns Hopkins University). Rebecca Lappen ’23 has used her newfound free time to learn how to skateboard. She explained, “I always wanted to try skating, and since my cousin already knew how, she taught me some basic skills and I stuck with it for a while and had a lot of fun.” Lappen said that, prior to the pandemic, she would have never tried anything close to skateboarding because it was so out of her comfort zone. When I asked her how she maintained her social life during the shutdown, she replied, “I like to go on bike rides with my friends. I think it’s a really good way to stay in touch with friends while being outside and staying distanced.”

During COVID-19, keeping distance from other people has been necessary in order to stop the spread of the virus. While bike riding is a safe, socially distanced way to socialize with friends, students have found other ways to stay active and keep in touch with friends. Healthy alternatives include going on walks, hanging out in someone’s yard, going on a hike at a local trail, or eating lunch together outdoors. Elizabeth Esan ’22, has been going on walks with her sister and mom around her neighborhood. Esan mentions, “I’ve been spending a lot more time with my family since the pandemic has started. I’ve also started making brownies and cakes with my little sisters.” For the past seven or eight months, parents have been working from home and children have been learning virtually, creating more opportunities for family bonding time.

With so much loss during the pandemic—millions of people infected, 200,000 lives lost, businesses closed, livelihoods lost, students around the country missing out on valuable learning time—it can be hard to see a silver lining. COVID-19, however, has created opportunities for people to get out of their comfort zones, try new activities, and spend more time with family. Now with less hectic schedules due to what the pandemic has cancelled, there is more time for new experiences, interests, and hobbies.