This essay won the first prize in the elementary school essay competition organized by an Indian community association called Kannada Koota of Northern California.
HOW ARE YOU SPENDING THE TIME DURING THIS IN-SHELTER DAYS? -PRERNA KOLAR, 7 Years
It was a regular day at school when my friend told me that there was a new virus called the corona virus. That day I had to go home from school. Donald Trump, the President of the USA had announced Shelter in Place. I did not know what that meant. I asked Alexa and she said because of corona virus, everyone had to just stay home, not meet people and maintain social distancing to avoid spreading germs. Soon I saw people wearing masks, all parks closed, and all my classes were canceled. My little brother and I just had to stay home!
I noticed that only some places were open like grocery stores. I started spending time at home playing with toys, helping my mom in the kitchen making chapatis and playing in the garden with my brother. My mom and I baked new cake recipes. I started making rainbow loom bracelets by watching YouTube. Every day I had video calls with my grandparents. I spent my time doing workbooks, Legos, a 300-piece jigsaw puzzle, origamis and watched movies on Amazon Prime and Netflix. I was also sad because I could not play with my friends. Mom and dad were busy in their office work, so they could not spend a lot of time with me. First, we were told the school will be closed for 3 weeks and then the school closed for the whole school year. Then my school’s online classes started as Zoom meetings. In addition, my teacher gave me assignments on Google classroom. My singing, dance and tennis classes also started online. I got busy just like mom and dad. Many days passed but the news was still all about the virus.
Every day for PE and fitness, I go out in the evening to bike, scooter, walk, or run in the neighborhood. While outside, I pick spring flowers for my mom. She puts it in a vase on her home-office desk. I also do yoga and meditation. Once we even did a backyard camp, which my dad set up. We did not sleep there but just rested and played. I also did jump rope. Every weekend, my family (dad, mom, me and my brother) go hiking. One Sunday, we went hiking at Uvas canyon in Morgan Hill. I saw beautiful little waterfalls, a flowing stream and lots of greenery. My mom said the waterfalls were beautiful because of all the rain we got the week before. My dad and I collected rocks.
I also celebrated Ugadi during this time! I had a head shower and my mom even gave me new clothes. I took part in Devara-pooje and had the prasada. I also had an Easter egg hunt at home. Mom and dad hid eggs in the backyard and my brother and I found them. There were also goody bags. Most of the eggs had chocolates.
After the shelter in place is over, I would like to travel with my family. We had planned on going to Peru during my spring break. I was so excited to see Amazon in that vacation. I’m so sad that it got canceled but my mom says we will go there after all this is over. Also, I would love to go to school and play with my friends. It has been a long time since I played with them.
In this experience, I have felt three things. First, I feel bored because I just cannot play with my friends. My two favorite things during this time are my bracelet maker and my iPad. Second, I feel sad because I was just going to finish my school year, but all my favorite classes and events were cancelled. Third, I also felt scared because the news keeps reporting more and more cases, but I am also very happy to safely stay home and spend time with my family. Good thing is I got to watch Ramayan!
This has been my first Shelter in Place. I hope it never ever happens again!
Submitted by Prerna Kolar, Santa Clara County – San Jose.