Never have I seen so many personal fireworks set off in one night in one neighborhood. Usually the organized community fireworks supersede the smaller displays, but it seems that people weren’t willing to give up the spectacle for the sake of COVID-19. We may not have been able to gather for the festival-like experience of traditional firework displays, but that didn’t stop anyone. There were probably 30 to 40 separate displays of both aerial and grounded fireworks in a 3 block radius of my home: booms and cracks came from every which direction.
I was doing some running around in the Rivertown area and I wanted to get something to eat. I saw tables with umbrellas over the table blocking some of the heat and sun from getting in my eyes. As I ate, I began thinking how it felt to do something naturally that I did prior to COVID-19, with the exception of going into Five Guys with a mask on. Although it’s still unknown when we believe things are normal again, it was nice to have some time of normalcy that I haven’t enjoyed in a while.
I miss spending time with my grandparents. Although they live nearby, I haven’t physically been with them in months. The closest we’ve been is when I am in my car next to my grandparents who are both in their car and we talk with our cars parked next to each other. We communicate regularly, as we always have, but it’s obviously not the same. Each time I would stop by their house to see them, my grandma would have a list of technology items she needed help with (She’s actually rather adept with using an iPhone. Once she learns how to do something, I don’t need to show her twice). My grandpa would discuss the latest news and politics, intertwined with, of course, talk of a golf tournament he was watching or the latest Grand Slam tennis event. My grandparents follow those sports very closely. I was always sent home with some delicious baked goods as my grandma was always trying to “cut back” on the quantity she and my grandpa ate.
I attended the drive through GRADfest that Grand Rapids Community College put on for those who are graduating from the school. It was really nice to see that despite the circumstances GRCC came together to celebrate those who are graduating. Even though graduation is going to be different, students were still excited to participate. While it does take away from walking I think the majority are just happy that the school is doing something to include them and honor their accomplishments. It was nice to see a lot of faculty show up to the event to cheer students on, especially seeing some who could spot students they’ve aided or taught. While they would prefer to graduate normally, nothing appears to be normal in 2020. This will hopefully be the first and last virtual graduation ceremony.
Over the past couple months, all of my classes have been online. At first it was an adjustment at the end of the winter semester, but through the summer I was holding on to hope that fall classes will allow me once again to be in the classroom. Despite my optimism, however, none of my classes were scheduled to be in person. Like everything in life, I learned quickly that adaptability is key. I think that overall I have had to learn to be more independent in my learning. I have matured as a result: suddenly I don’t have a live professor to remind me of deadlines or someone to explain every theory in my textbook. I have had to take my education into my own hands, something I think will help me in the long run. I feel more confident with online learning, although the toll it takes does weigh on me a little bit. My statistics class was easily the hardest class I have taken in my academic career. It was made worse by the fact that it was online and therefore I had to teach a lot of it to myself. I struggled a lot and was frustrated a lot, but by the end of the class I was so fulfilled when I got an 84% on the final. By the end of the upcoming fall semester, I will have taken a total of 33 credits either fully or partially online. It’s crazy to think that a large part of my academic learning was done online, however I can’t help but think how much more prepared I will be when we get back into real classrooms.
Hello again.. Did ya miss me? So we are still in this crazy real life comic book we call 2020. And I figure you guys could use a nice distraction so how bout I tell you about my madness? So I live in the basement of my parents house, go ahead make all the loser nerd jokes you wish. Point is I’ve been dealing with a earwig problem… I’ve found four of them in the span of three weeks. The other night I was in the middle of shaving were I just happened to look at one of the walls in my bathroom… And saw something moving. It was the mother, the goddess of all earwigs! This cursed creepy crawler of my craziest nightmare appeared to be longer than my ring finger. But I stayed calm and did what any calm sane person would do… I wrapped my fist up with toilet paper like a prizefighter and nailed the goddess of all earwigs with a punch that I like to think would make Mike Tyson proud, but it kept moving on the ground. I punched it on the floor. It kept moving, finally I wrapped it in the toilet paper and gave it a burial by sea (I flushed the thing down the toilet while saying in my normal loud voice, “Survive that… and then I used an explicit word).” So, that’s what I’ve been up to. I hope it brought a smile to your face because it freaked me out.
Editor’s Note: This story was updated at 2:09 p.m. on Sunday, July 12 to include an additional entry.