The Global Quarantine Diaries
A Traveller’s Struggles in Quarantine
I’m located in a very small, epically boring town in Northern Ontario. When I moved back home from University I told myself I would be escaping my small town as soon as possible. But like it always does, life happens. I got a job in my field. A job I love. The ‘one summer’ window of being back in my town turned into a year. But I had a plan. I was going to escape. I was going to move as far away as possible. But then Queen Rona took reign.
I’ve always been a traveller. When I was 18, my sister and I took our first backpacking trip around Europe. God it’s insane to look at 18-year-olds now and think about how young I really was when I did that. We blew all of our money in our first country, England, by going to Harry Potter attractions. I remember e-mailing my dad something along the lines of “Send money or we starve” one night in Italy after staying in a hostel in the middle of nowhere that gave my sister bedbugs.
But since that trip I’ve never really stopped travelling. In 2018, I moved to the UK to study abroad at the University of Lincoln. I’d love to say since my first trip to Europe I’d learn to spend my travel budget better, but I’d be lying. While there I booked a week long trip to Greece simply because I was up late with jetlag listening to ABBA songs. Then a girls trip to Norway not long afterwards.
And ever since I lived there I had a burning desire to go back. And so the plan formed in my mind. I’d save enough money with the job I had and move back to the UK the second I felt like it was enough. I was going to escape.
But, like almost everyone’s plans in 2020, that will have to wait.
So here I am, quarantining in a town I despise waiting for the day the borders open up again.
It’s a hard time for travellers.
But I have to say, this time has given me reason to see the best in my town. Being in Canada during this pandemic is already a thing to be grateful for. Though I’m one of the few lucky ones who has been able to keep her job but work remotely, Canada has been good to its citizens by providing so many subsidies and financial aid to those in need.
And there’s an even better part about being in this small town in Canada that quarantine has made me understand: just how beautiful it is. I’m able to hike every single day. My small town probably has around 30 known hiking trails in it, and being able to be out in the fresh air has kept me sane. There’s lakes my dog can swim in. Rivers to canoe in. Sun to soak up.
In the end, it may be a hard time in life to be a traveller, but what’s helped is to act like a traveller in my hometown. It’s the time to explore what’s around you and gain a new appreciation for things. I may adore Europe, but I can think of no other place I’d want to be in quarantine than in Canada with my family.