During these odd times, many people are looking for things to do without the human contact. An idea I, and many others, have had is going on runs. It seems that even going on runs has changed. There is always that constant paranoia that those people you happen to pass may have contracted the coronavirus without knowing it, and accidentally pass it on to you.
There is always that chance that someone you pass could possibly have it. I have seen many people even resort to wearing masks on jogs/walks no matter how difficult it may be whenever it limits your breathing. It has definitely taken some getting used to. That constant fear that you may be putting yourself or your family in danger from doing something as simple and going on a run.
However, on other days, mostly when it’s not sunny/warm outside, there are no people out. It gives off an eerie feeling when there are no people, and sometimes even no cars, out in a neighborhood you used to see many people out and about in. It’s almost as though it has turned into a ghost town.
Something I have also realized, even though it’s not something many people really think about, is how not nearly as many people say hello as they used too. When I pass people, I or them go into the street to avoid being too close, some even cross the street. This obviously puts the limit on any conversation taking place.
One time, I was passing a lady, we were over 6 feet apart, and she made a comment about me not wearing a mask, and even told me to put my head band I was wearing around my face. She had not been wearing a mask herself, and had just exited a gas station. I had been by myself, and outside where I could distance myself from people. It just goes to show how this situation has been affecting others. She may have felt hostile from the situation, I am sometimes paranoid to leave my house myself.
On a more positive note, I have noticed many signs in windows thanking essential workers. It’s uplifting to see people thanking those who are typically risking their health for us right now.
The drawings seem to be done by children, which can even make it even more touching.
The church I pass has also been trying to spread positivity. They always leave chalk out so that walkers or joggers are able to stop and leave a positive message for others to see. Some examples of what people write are: ‘We are in this together,’ ‘Stay strong,’ ‘Stay positive,’ ‘Thank you essential workers,’ etc. I try to write something everytime I see the chalk left out. These can be hard times for many.
Going on runs during these times have been quite different to say the least. It has helped me to open my eyes to how greatly others are being impacted too.