1. In what ways has pandemic life been positive for you?
MPOW has been incredibly generous, allowing those of us who felt uncomfortable going in to work every day (for personal health reasons, or because we lived with/cared for someone who had health reasons, etc.) to simply say that and work from home. Because there were so few students allowed into the library, the four librarians just rotated weekly and did the WFH thing the rest of the time. We were also provided with weekly COVID tests, and more than enough PPE/cleansing wipes.
I got reading and binge-watching done while I've been home, and I haven't managed to get so irritated with Thing One that I've killed him (although my staff promises that they'll help me hide the body and/or get bail... do I trust them on that? maybe... maybe not... they really love his cookies...)
The flip side (which isn't asked about here!) is that being at home and cooped up has irritated my dust allergy beyond belief. I've gained some weight, although that's starting to come off. I know, not the biggest problems in the world.
2. Where (and how often) did you get your pandemic news this past year?
Daily, and from a variety of sources: MSNBC, BBC, The Guardian UK, The Washington Post, Toronto Globe & Mail, Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal. Sometimes someone would tweet a link to a story on another platform, like LA Times or HuffPo. The Massachusetts COVID website. My school (for what our plans were, what protective steps were being taken, etc.).
3. Where did you find unexpected comfort in these crazy twelve months?
Our weekly family Sunday Zoom (for which I've come up with interesting titles–that's another post much later this year). The yahrzeit for my mother and the memories that brought back. The Herd and cuddling with them more frequently.
4. What are some little things you miss most about what used to be normal life?
- Pub trivia
- Going to Montreal and Europe
- Eating in restaurants
- Seeing students
- Lunch with colleagues
- Hanging out with friends
- Wearing more than my pjs most of the time (well, miss might be too strong... I definitely miss the need to wear something else, but pj's are so comfy!)
- Live theatre and music and dance, be it professional or a student production
None of those are terribly "little" are they?
5. What do you think life will be like twelve months from now?
Work with be mostly on-campus, and most of the students will have returned to daily classes. We'll still be wearing masks, and I don't know if that means we won't be dining out or travelling, but it does mean we'll be able to be out in public a bit more. I'll be able to see my father more easily, and maybe my sister (who is in Canada, so there's a whole border thing to deal with).
Mostly, I hope that we'll have begun to heal as a country, with the divides narrowing (I don't think they'll ever go away) and the screaming heads on both sides will have less influence.