What have people been doing during the pandemic?

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Aaron Lox and Shreyas Nair

What do you do when you are basically stuck in your home for over 8 months? Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been in that very situation for most of 2020. The answer? Find some new hobbies. Specifically, which hobbies have the students and teachers of Edison Intermediate School (EIS) been doing? Well, Aaron Lox and Shreyas Nair have been searching around and interviewing people to find that very question, and here are our results. 

In March 2020, most of the population of America was sitting in their homes, with nothing to do. Many people turned to video games, cooking, and biking just to name a few activities. “I have played a lot more video games and biked a lot more. I also learned how to cook,” stated Shreyas Nair.

During these long months, cooking, biking, and gaming were only a few of the things that kept people to keep themselves busy. Because of all of the new hobbies popping up during quarantine, shortages arose in staggering amounts, such as the lack of flour in stores, the difficulty finding bikes, and the shortage of Nintendo Switch’s. However, that’s not everything people were doing.

For example, Ryan Belline, a sixth math teacher at EIS, and ultimate frisbee coach and player had been forced to stop playing his favorite sport, ultimate frisbee due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, Mr. Belline turned to disc golf, which is like golf but instead of hitting a ball into a hole, you’re throwing a frisbee into a pole. Disc golf never really shut down, for, to quote Mr. Belline: “In disc golf, you almost never need to get near other people, and therefore is perfect as a socially distanced sport”. 

Upon getting used to the new frisbee (disc golf uses a smaller, floppier frisbee than ultimate which) he went to a few local tournaments. Later in the year, and after rising up in the ranks of the local disc golf scene, Mr. Belline also went to a few out of state bigger tournaments, all around the Tri-State area. Even as the weather begins to chill, Mr. Belline is still heading to two to three events each month.

In April 2020, seventh-grader Francesca Hamar was sitting around her house with nothing to like the rest of us at that time. Then, in the midst of this boredom, she decided to try painting. “I had never really enjoyed painting, but one I was like, you know what? Why don’t I try painting?” stated Francesca. 

After picking up some art supplies and a small handheld canvas, she began to paint on it. “I would just go around my house with my little canvas and paint random things, like a pencil sharpener, a mug, or a chair. Another thing I liked to paint was sunsets” Francesca commented. 

Over the next few months, as quarantine ravaged along, Francesca Hamar turned what was something she didn’t particularly enjoy, into a major hobby of hers. She just kept painting and loved it along the way. 

During the first few months of quarantine, high-schooler Aidan Crane was stuck at home with nothing to do. He had a few musical instruments lying around, so he decided to learn how to play the piano, and he enjoyed it! That was one of the few things that Aidan has picked up during quarantine. He also played video games before the pandemic, and that was one of the few things keeping him sane during the pandemic. “However, the pandemic wasn’t all that bad to me and I made some good memories. One of my favorite memories was when I participated in the marching band,” Aidan commented.

Not only hobbies emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic though. Mrs. Nicole Curtis-Special Education is a testament to that. “While I did do the general hobbies, such as baking bread, for me the most crucial thing I got from quarantine was appreciation. Just how lucky I am to be baking bread and hanging out with my dog, while others are suffering,” Mrs. Curtis mentioned. 

According to Mrs. Curtis, empathy emerges in times of stress. However, she continues with this incitement.  “We as Americans went from being on-the-go 24/7 to having time to slow down and appreciate the small things in life. I bet many people found not only hobbies but were able to realize what is really important to them in their lives” added Mrs. Curtis.

Like the rest of us, 8th grader Eric Gilerson was immensely bored during the first few months of quarantine. Eric had always enjoyed basketball before quarantine, and he decided to buy a basketball hoop. He really enjoyed that and it helped him stay active and not bored. “I also played video games a lot more. I did it before quarantine, but now I am doing it a lot more,” Eric stated. Eric also had some positive memories from quarantine. His favorite one was when he went to his summer camp and won his soccer league.

From all of these people’s experiences, we can clearly tell that quarantine has affected people in different ways, and they deal with it in different ways; from painting to playing video games, coronavirus is a disease that has changed our lives and will change our futures.