City High in Quarantine

A look at what different City High Students are doing to keep themselves busy during self isolation

Jesse Hausknecht-Brown, Feature Editor

From last minute, at-home weddings to stir-crazy athletes, many people are feeling the stress of being self-quarantined at home. 

“My parents aren’t letting me go to the store with them or anything, because they’re really worried about [COVID-19] too, just because of how it’s affecting younger people,” Joey Dennis ‘23 said.

Dennis, whose parents are divorced, only goes outdoors to switch between their houses; he feels bored and thinks being quarantined is hard because the only people he sees are his parents. Rika Yahashiri ‘21 is trying to create a routine for herself to prevent boredom.

“I’m trying to [have] somewhat of a routine: doing some academics, maybe some exercise, and doing some household chores,” Yahashiri said.

Some teenagers are finding it difficult to have to stay home because they are not able to see their friends.

“It’s probably the worst thing that could have happened,” Dennis, who has been FaceTiming with friends, said. “I think myself, I’m just a really social person, so just not being able to have interaction with other people [is difficult]. I feel like I’m not learning anything…I’m almost useless.”

I’m just a just a really social person, so just not being able to have interaction with other people [is difficult]. I feel like I’m not learning anything…I’m almost useless.”

— Joey Dennis '23

Dennis describes himself as a hands-on learner and wishes to be able to go back to school to be in the classroom, as he feels like he will learn best in that setting.

“I think Zoom wouldn’t be the worst idea in the world,” Dennis said. “If we didn’t have a way to interact with the teacher and the people in our class, that would just be really hard for me. I’m someone who just asks questions a lot.”

Yahashiri swims with the competitive swim club, IFLY, which has not been able to practice since the middle of March when the pools closed.

“It’s much different because you don’t get to see the people you see every day and train with every day and you lose that time of working out with your friends that you had every day,” Yahashiri said. “It makes you appreciate it more and makes you miss it, and it makes you think about how much it impacts your life.”

IFLY is hosting Zoom workouts and sending around workout sheets to help its members track their progress and set goals. The Zoom sessions are usually 30 minutes long and eight to ten people join.

“We’re all just at the computer, looking at the computer and following what the coaches are doing on the computer, so it’s different,” Yahashiri said. “You can tell that people miss swimming.”

Yahashiri has been doing YouTube workouts and going on runs to try to stay in shape as well. Dennis has also been running as a way to leave the house and get outdoors. In addition to exercising, Dennis has been trying out new hobbies to pass the time.

“I try to listen to an album a day. I tried learning Russian [and] I’m still working on it,” Dennis said. “Duolingo is a great app for that. I haven’t really been doing a whole lot.”

Meanwhile, Adalie Burton ‘23 celebrated her mother and now-stepfather’s wedding in the middle of their living room to follow social distancing rules.

“It was gonna be at a venue and everything, but with all of the isolation going on, we decided to move it to our house and we basically just moved all the furniture out of the way, put chairs in the middle of the living room and called the officiant and had him come here instead,” Burton said.

The wedding took place on Saturday, March 21, one week into the social distancing period. They could have had the wedding at the planned venue, but decided that it would be too much trouble.

“We could have gone to the venue, but it was gonna be a whole thing,” Burton said. “They were like, ‘We’ll just give you a code to get in and get out [and] you’ll have to clean up after yourselves and let yourself back out.’ We didn’t really want to deal with that because we knew it’d be a whole mess and a whole thing to get the sound system working. So we just switched to our own house.”

They decided to change the wedding location a little less than a week before the wedding and had to notify the guests of the change. There ended up being 11 people at the wedding, including the bride and groom.

We all just felt a lot closer to one another and it was a very warm and fuzzy feeling and I cried a lot. It was great.”

— Adalie Burton '23

“We were all kind of worried about pulling it off because we weren’t going to have a big wedding to begin with, but we immediately had to contact a lot of people and [say], ‘Hey, you can’t come.’ Most of them weren’t going to come anyway because of social distancing but we just had to reach out to a ton of people and make sure that they were not planning on coming,” Burton said.

Because of the recent social distancing recommendations, Burton’s mom and stepfather weren’t sure if their parents would be able to attend the wedding.

“We had to reach out to my mom and stepdad’s parents to see if they were still going to come because traveling and all of that during this time was kind of wishy-washy and we didn’t actually know for sure if my mom’s parents were going to be there until two days before the wedding,” Burton said. “That was really stressful.”

The family quickly reached out to the caterer, florist, and baker to see if they would still be in service. The baker was excited to help and the florist was able to give out more flowers than what was paid for because they were going to die anyways.

“We had to reach out to everyone that was working together to get this done and ask if they were willing to switch the location over to our house and they all were very lovely about it,” Burton said. 

In the end, the family was happy to have a smaller celebration at home.

“We were all really happy and I think this was kind of the best way it could have turned out, because it was really small, but it was just family and we were all together. My mom said that she felt like she could absorb the moment a lot more because she wasn’t in this huge venue, she was just at home and not super stressed out,” Burton said. “We all just felt a lot closer to one another and it was a very warm and fuzzy feeling and I cried a lot. It was great.”