Brian Gu dusts off his old diary from the Spanish Flu outbreak, or travels in time for his four-week memoir of isolation from coronavirus. Idk, whichever’s more believable for you.
Day One: So it’s the first day of being locked within the confines of my room, and I have to say, it actually refreshes the mind to be away from the intense distractions of the outside world. It feels nice to sleep in without the burden of having to wake up for a lecture. It relaxes me to know I can work from the comfort of my home office.
And so begins a long four weeks. But, instead of launching myself straight down into the dumps, I have every intention of being sanguine and optimistic during these difficult times. It’ll be a good opportunity to catch up on all the work I missed, all the sleep I gave up in the early days of semester and all the family time I lost.
It’s going to be a great four weeks. Who knows – I might even take the opportunity to read a book.
Day Two: Heading into day two of lockdown, I admit the thought of prolonged isolation is becoming very quickly daunting, but I insist on remaining positive.
So that’s why I’ve planned my four weeks jam-packed with events! So many lectures to rewatch, friends to catch up with, and video games to treat myself to playing. There’s honestly so much to do, that four weeks might not even be enough! That’s just as well though, as it hardly looks like this mess will wrap up by then.
Perhaps best of all though, today I realised I had the rare and exciting prospect of being afforded the time to read. With a book in my hand, and no other thoughts in my mind, I was in a state of pure relaxation. That was when I fell asleep.
Day Five: Today, I tried studying despite these difficult circumstances. Unfortunately, I was forced to abandon my stoic efforts after I was distracted by a video of a dog chasing its own tail.
It’s been a tough five days. My productivity rate has plummeted, things I had down for Day One haven’t even been attempted five days later; needless to say, things haven’t been going great in Casa de Loner.
But with the end of a working week means new goals to be set for the next. Stop binge eating all that food you’ve saved for isolation… fine. Cut down from two times a… yep. Pick up that book you’ve been meaning to read?
Working on that.
Day Twelve: Today, I got a bit lonely, so I tried bringing back the 2005 AOL instant messenger dating game. Pretending to be a friendly neighbour checking up on whether ‘strangers’ have COVID-19 isn’t the most conventional of methods, but obviously desperate times call for desperate measures.
So yeah, if you needed the tip, these AREN’T great pick-up lines to try during this harrowing time of crisis:
“Girl, you’re hot enough to put your whole neighbourhood on Alert Level 4.”
“We don’t need this virus to make things hot and sweaty between us.”
“This is the Ministry of Health. We can confirm you’ve been identified as a close contact with Jesus because Christ you’re looking fine.”
So yeah… this is probably why I’m being kept away from people. If only someone had written a book on how to master the instant messenger dating game. I’d add that onto my list of books to read, right behind this current one that I still need to start.
Day Twenty: Today, I watched a Together at Home concert by OneRepublic. I didn’t wake up wanting to see OneRepublic, nor did I leave the stream wanting to hear any more of them. They kind of sounded like Chris Martin with a cold. A literal cold-play (if there were other people in the room, they would be laughing).
A power outage happened at 1pm, and I was seriously forced to re-contemplate the events in my life that had led me to that singular point of being stranded in my room, disconnected from the spiralling outside world. Ultimately, the power came back at 1.30pm, after which I went back to thinking about OneRepublic.
As always, I tried to pick up a book today, but at some point I must have tripped and had it fall out of my hands. Strangely, I never picked it up again during the day.
Day Twenty-Eight: So it’s the final day of mandatory lockdown and God I feel alive. I’m ready to run outside and hug my neighbours. Or drive to the nearest Pak’n’Save and start a fight that’ll be shared all over Facebook. All the things that a free human being can do! But for my final test, I have a short five hours to wait out before I am afforded that freedom.
In the meanwhile, I have resorted to reading a book, a harrowing example that desperate times call for desperate measures. Turns out it’s actually a pretty good read and I can’t put it down. Oh well, guess I’ll just have to leave it till the next lockdown.