As Londoners head into their third calendar year of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the highly contagious Omicron variant driving new daily infections to record heights, reporter Calvi Leon asked a sampling of people what they've learned about themselves during life under the virus crisis.
"I really need structure and routine. I can't live without it," the Grade 9 business teacher said. "I like to know what's going to happen (and) all this uncertainty took a toll on me. I just couldn't go with the flow." Her nine-year-old daughter, Victoria, the mother said, learned how much she enjoys being at school, learning in person with friends. And Victoria's favourite subject? Math, she said, smiling.
"That family and friends are a number one priority," Evan Gardiner said, as he and his girlfriend left Victoria Park after an afternoon skate. "Spending time with them is crucial. . . and we also take it for granted, too."
Gardiner's partner Christina Mavrokefalos echoed that sentiment, adding she misses having dinner with her family every week but appreciates the time they spend together.
Radosavljevic said she's learned that she enjoys staying indoors more than she thought. That, and “walking in the park with family and friends,” she added.
"I can do whatever I want to do if I put my mind to it," said George, who was proud to share he recently graduated with a master's degree in engineering.
“Definitely the value of relationships. I’ve had a lot of friends that are like, you know, I don’t see you every day, so we’re not friends. “Even us two,” Patel said, standing next to her partner. “We had to do long distance throughout the pandemic. The pandemic was, in a way, a blessing that makes you realize who your true homies are.”
It’s also a time for personal growth, Trivedi said. “We had time to develop ourselves because we were home a lot more. I Learned to be more effective in what I do and I want to carry that forward,” the chiropractor said, adding he started his own business during the pandemic.
The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada
Calvi Leon, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, London Free Press