Quarantine Diaries: Wear Your Damn Mask

covid quarantine

I’m back in NYC!

After spending most of the spring in quarantine with my parents out on Long Island, I have returned to the Isle of Manhattan. I thought I’d be excited to be back, but of course, nothing can be bliss during the retched mess that is 2020.

My dad offered to drive me into NYC on his way to work a few days after my birthday so I wouldn’t have to sit in any germs while riding the LIRR. We made a few stops in Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan before heading uptown and boy, was I SHOCKED at how many people were ignoring the rule about face coverings during this pandemic.

In Brooklyn, I saw several people wearing their masks under their chins or not at all. I was hoping this was just going to be a rare case of Brooklyn bad-assery, but no. As my trip into Manhattan continued, I saw more and more people wearing masks incorrectly or not at all.

Fast forward to a week after being back in New York City, and I come across a nurse from a nearby hospital wearing their mask under their chin. IF A NURSE CAN’T FOLLOW THE RULES HOW CAN WE EXPECT TO EVER GET RID OF COVID-19?! HOW?!

As cities begin to reopen, streets and indoor spaces are bound to become crowded again, especially in places like NYC. I went out for a walk in Highbridge Park a few days ago to take some photos for the next DSLR Diaries, which should be fine as parks are large outdoor spaces where social distancing is fairly easy. However, I saw a woman holding a large arrangement of balloons and a Spider-Man birthday cake at the park and lost my mind.

I could have sworn gatherings were prohibited in parks during Phase 1 of reopening. Did I misread that memo?

I really hope whoever was supposed to attend that birthday party politely declined, explaining why she was standing alone with the cake and balloons.

In all seriousness, I know the warmer weather is making it super uncomfortable to wear a mask. I totally understand. Wearing a mask in temperatures over 75°F should be considered an Olympic sport.

And by all means, go protest. Go for a walk in the park. Have a virtual birthday party. Take a road trip.

But if we don’t want coronavirus cases to spiral out of control again, we have to follow the rules. Wear your mask, wash your hands, and follow your city’s recommendations for a safe reopening so we can go back to enjoying a normal life again sooner rather than later.

Just please stop wearing your masks under your chins. It’s utterly pointless.

Quarantine Diaries: Escaping 2020 with Historical Dramas/Period Films

So we’re all on the same page when it comes to 2020 being the worst year in existence, right? Yeah? Okay, cool.

I’ve found comfort in trying to escape all these horrid happenings (i.e. COVID-19, murder hornets, God knows what else) by watching historical dramas and period films on Netflix and Amazon Prime. Drama is my favorite genre, and I love seeing the cool costumes and set design that goes into making the scenes look realistic for the time periods they are set in.

Below are a few of the films I’ve enjoyed during quarantine so far.

Mansfield Park (1999)
Time Period: 1810s

This film is based on the Jane Austen novel of the same name. Fans of the Amazon Prime series Rome will enjoy seeing James Purefoy (Mark Antony) and Lindsay Duncan (Servilia of the Junii) star as Thomas Bertram Jr. and Mrs. Price respectively.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Watch on Netflix

W./E. (2011)
Time Period: 1930s/1990s

Directed by Madonna, this film has some stunning cinematography despite it’s negative reviews. I happened to really enjoy the story of Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson. Wally Winthrop’s obsession with the couple is a bit excessive as she visited the Sotheby’s exhibit daily, but I still found this movie to have its charms nonetheless.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐
Watch on Netflix

Love and Friendship (2016)
Time Period: 1790s

This movie took me a whole three days to finish because it was super boring at the beginning. The excitement in this drama begins at the very end, which made me wish they had incorporated more humor in the moments leading to the climax. Based on the Jane Austen novella Lady Susan.

My rating: ⭐⭐
Watch on Amazon Prime

A Little Chaos (2014)
Time Period: 17th Century

Who doesn’t love a strong, independent female lead like Kate Winslet’s character Sabine de Barra?! I adored everything about this film, from the landscape architecture to the romance between Sabine and André Le Nôtre.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Watch on Netflix

Troop Zero (2019)
Time Period: 1970s

This film has Viola Davis death stares galore! A must watch for anyone who is a fan of the amazing Viola Davis. I legit almost cried at the end of this but my tears dried up well before they fell when I saw the rest of the troop stand in solidarity with Christmas Flint.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Watch on Amazon Prime

North & South (2004)
Time Period: 1850s

This BBC serial is a four-parter that will for sure reel you in from the moment you meet John Thornton. Based on the 1855 novel by Elizabeth Gaskell, this serial gave me Pride & Prejudice vibes through and through.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Watch on Amazon Prime

The Rain Collector (2015)
Time Period: Victorian Era

This amazing short left me wanting more! A brilliant young woman finds love unexpectedly as she goes against the expectations of women in Victorian England through her love of science.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Watch on Amazon Prime

 

Stay safe and stay home!

 

 

Quarantine Diaries: Some Words of Encouragement

Read previous installments of the Quarantine Diaries.

Being quarantined isn’t fun at all whatsoever, as we’ve all probably realized just after a few short hours of beginning self-isolation.

I’ve lost count of how long it’s been at this point.

Earlier this week I managed to go outside (farther than the mailbox, yay) for the first time since starting self-isolation, and it felt so strange. I’ve had an on-and-off migraine ever since.

I just want to go back to NYC so badly.

It’s been so hard seeing the number of coronavirus cases increase around the world. In light of this, I’ve found inspiration to stay strong on my favorite YouTube channels and through encouraging social media posts.

Here are a few words of encouragement to keep you hanging on in these trying times:

A word on learning to value yourself as more than your work during quarantine from Shut Up & Go Traveler Jo Franco.

A few essential self-care activities to that’ll help you to do everything you can to stay positive.

Kevin Droniak’s grandma Lill says to wash your hands and stay busy. And don’t watch the news so much “because it’ll drive you to drink.”

 

It’s okay to feel emotionally unwell right now.


It’s also totally okay to not want to be productive during quarantine.

 

A little Jonas Brothers (and Busted) humor from Royal Holloway Library.

 

A reminder that too much news is not always best for your soul right now.

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As we all come together to handle this crisis, what we will come to learn is that it was love for our fellowman that got us through. The doctors, nurses, mask makers, food transporters, grocery store cashiers and stock personnel, that kept us all together. It is coming down to the individual person who does their part for the benefit of the whole, the farmers, truck drivers, Amazon workers and drivers, post office employees, hospital food workers, receptionists, restaurant owners, their kitchen staff and delivery drivers, the local pizza shop who has decided to stay open and feed the kids in the neighborhood who are home from school, the teachers who are scrambling to learn how to teach their students virtually, the firemen and women, police officers, and first responders, the construction workers building testing facilities, the lab workers, the moms and dads who have lost their jobs and who are now watching our for elderly neighbors, the moms and dads who are working from home and now have to home school their children, the young person who lives alone and who is now socially isolating and who may not be able to pay their rent next month but who isolated not to infect any more people, the bus drivers, train workers, and infrastructure maintenance crews we rarely hear about! These are OUR people and THEY are the reasons we will make it through! Leadership is crucial, but never forget, a society is only as strong as its love, respect and empathy each citizen has for its fellowman.

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And above all else, remember:

Please also keep in mind that people are recovering! The news puts so much emphasis on the current amount of people infected and the number of deaths, but the recoveries get lost in the mix. Here are some recovery stories:

104-Year-Old Veteran Recovers Before Birthday

104-Year-Old Italian Woman Recovered from Virus

Ventura County Residents Recovered

Tom Hanks & Rita Wilson Recovering and Heading Back to LA

Idris Elba Has Recovered from Covid-Related Body Aches

 

Stay safe and STAY HOME!

Quarantine Diaries: General Feelings + Playlist

I haven’t been outside since Saint Patrick’s Day 2020.

And no, I did not spend my last hours of freedom as one usually would on any other March 17th, drinking Bailey’s Irish Cream and singing old Irish hymns with friends.

Quite the opposite, actually.

After my dentist appointment at 3pm, I went straight back to my parent’s place and prepared for self-isolation.

I debated going back to NYC, but it’s easier for me to practice social distancing out on Long Island. Residences out here are farther apart from each other, there’s not a lot of pedestrian traffic, and, moreover, if you don’t have a car (or a license) you can’t really get too far.

I’m not going to lie, I hate this.

The most I’ve done since March 17th was go out to get the mail, which is like three feet away from the door.

I’m lucky that I can work my full time job from home, but I miss being around my coworkers IRL. Zoom video chatting helps, but the energy isn’t the same.

And frankly, I’m getting tired of answering the door with gloves on and tediously transferring my Seamless delivery food from the restaurant’s tupperware to my parent’s dinnerware, hoping no germs touch the dining room table in the process.

I’ve run out of my favorite lemon ginger tea, and I can’t just waltz over to Target to get more because they’ve sold out.

My lips have started to sting and peel, and my acne is out of control because I’ve been stressing out so much over the uncertainty of this whole pandemic situation.

Anxiety levels. Do they have a limit? If so, my body doesn’t know them.

My muscles are so tense from a combination of slouching in my mom’s office chair, sprawling out in awkward positions on the couch while binge-watching Hulu, and contorting my neck while scrolling through Instagram in bed.

Coronavirus, please escort yourself back to hell where you belong.

I think the only thing that is keeping me ever-so-slightly sane is music. Yesterday, I jammed out to a bunch of my favorite love songs while scrubbing the dandruff (another possible symptom of my anxiousness) out of my hair in the shower and it felt amazing.

So, instead of the spring playlist I was planning to share for today’s blog post, I present to you a quarantine playlist to go along with this first installment of the “Quarantine Diaries.”

These are some of the most recent songs that I can’t stop listening to. Enjoy!

1. Dear God, Phantogram. Praying really hard these days.

2. Attack of Panic, Aly & AJ. “There’s a panic in [all of us]”.

 

3. Breathing, FAVELA. Trying not to forget how to do that.

4. I’m With It, Satin Jackets ft. Metaxas. “We’re going to make it all okay”.

5. Pretty Great, Fickle Friends. Vibe check.

 

6. Sunlight, BLOWSOM. Craving some vitamin D rn.

7. Since You’ve Asked, Birocratic. Essential minimalist jam.

8. New Love (Yummm Remix), From Indian Lakes. A masterpiece, remixed.

9. El Tejano, Lauv ft. Sofía Reyes. A little rendezvous for the stir-crazy.

 

10. Further Up (Na, Na, Na, Na, Na) – IAmChino Remix, Pitbull ft. Static & Ben El. Where my party people at?

11. Used To Like, Neon Trees. For when you’re going to extremes.

12. Circles, Post Malone. An apocalypto romance that is very fitting for these times.

 

13. Hotel, ATTLAS ft. MAYLYN. Shout out to the tourists trapped in hotels during this mess.

14. Any Song, ZICO. Honestly, whatever tunes make you happy, listen to ’em.

Do your part and stay safe during these trying times, folks. STAY HOME.