What was for you the best part of the pandemic?

  1. I got furloughed. It meant I got to spend the pandemic shielding with my wife before she passed away last year. Words can't describe how grateful I am that I got so much extra quality time with my wife. Would've been impossible to have that much time if I'd had to be working full time.

  2. OMG, I know exactly what you mean. I got engaged at the end of 2019, and my partner passed away February of last year. I'm soooo soo so so grateful that we got all that time together. We would go on tons of road trips exploring empty cities, including Vegas. Didn't go in anywhere, just spend the night walking the empty strip. It was the best way to experience Vegas for the first time. I have a picture of him across from New York, New York across the strip, and New York City was one of his favorite places. We laughed, cried, fought, and got to know each other so intimately. I would give anything to go back to those precious months. Got to see the Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce Canyon ,and camping all over national forest land. We got years of experiences condensed down into those few months, and looking back now I can see why. He was only 24, and taken away way too soon, but I know in my heart he left this world happier than he had ever been. I'm so sorry you had to experience that hurt, but know you're not alone. I wish you nothing but peace and as much serenity as you can find moving forward 💚

  3. I had 2 friends that I hung out with almost every night. They were just as isolated as I was during the day so we weren’t too worried about passing anything. None of us got sick. Spent the nights drinking, having bonfires and talking. Good times. Some of the best.

  4. Yeah, I had a COVID gang. Great times, it was like being a kid again in some ways, I hadn’t had a regular hangout going on since college.

  5. Oh dear God, this was and still is so amazing. I had to commute an hour by train for my job at the time, and suddenly... No more commute! Just sleeping an hour longer, having an hour extra time at home in the evening!

  6. I’m glad everyone realize that they should take commute into consideration when finding work. You shouldn’t have to spend more than 20 minutes to get to and from work. Bonus points if your job can be done at home. Like I’d rather be given a daily quota that shows I’m constantly working instead of goofing off than pretend I’m working when my supervisor pops in and then popping out solitaire when they’re gone.

  7. I live near a univ, so our town was completely emptied after classes were cancelled. One night I drove around and it reminded me of that scene in every post-apocalypse movie where the survivors drive through town ignoring traffic rules because there's no one left. It was awesome. I stopped on a main 4-lane street... no traffic as far as I could see in either direction.

  8. Yup and that lovely silence that goes with the lack of traffic. Plus the little things, like realizing 95% of our jobs are meaningless and the meaningful jobs are drastically underpaid, first responders, supermarket workers, sanitation workers, truck drivers. There's probably a football stadium full of essential workers that perished because they couldn't stay home and sadly they won't get any recognition for it.

  9. The morning after the first lockdown was announced I was driving to work, may as well have been the only person in the world, zero other cars the whole journey.

  10. Yep.... My job is usually a 15 minute drive across the city with moderate traffic. Close to 30 with heavy traffic.... There was times during the height of the pandemic in 2020 where I was leaving work at 6:45 in the evening and getting home before 6:55.

  11. I always figured it would be, but I expected it to be another 20 years. Covid forced it and was definitely a silver lining.

  12. Not in the UK. One of the ministers who is also known as "Jac-the-kipper" has been leaving notes on empty desks asking civil servants working from home why they're not at their desk.

  13. Yes. This is by far the best part for me. I still work from home and I like it so much more than going into the office for eight hours every day. I graduated college in 2020 so I may never have to work in an office aside from my internship. Fingers crossed.

  14. The mass market learning that you don't need to be in an adult day care to actually get your job done.

  15. 100%. My "we will never do WFH" company (at the time) went through the phases: "WFH until this is over," then "WFH as long as you need," and then "WFH unless you can't perform your job outside the office." When I left, they were planning on giving up a bunch of their leases and trying to figure out how to get more people to WFH to reduce overhead.

  16. It's interesting to look at it from the scope of asynchronous vs synchronous work. Some jobs are async or sync in nature. A great many have been historically forced into sync workflows just by the nature of business in the past.

  17. This muthaf'in right here! What a FOOL I was getting up, driving miles to an office, be trapped there all day and then have to drive miles back home afterwards.

  18. Work from home has given me quality of life I never thought I l'd have. I have chronic migraines (among a myriad of less serious health issues because I got literally all the shit genes from my family and my brother got none); senior year of high school, I missed 26 days. I barely graduated. Sitting in a dusty old building, under harsh lighting, with strong smells like perfumes and scented lotions all mingling together, sitting in an uncomfortable position for 7-8 hours a day killed my head regularly. My eyes would water from the pain, I'd come up with stomach pains (a fun side effect of migraines is stomach pain, dizziness and vomiting), and I just felt miserable, all the time. I was stuck in a deep depression almost all the time.

  19. I haven't had a cold or anything in years! Flu numbers were way down, too, even though there were less vaccinated, due to my provinces (Ontario, Canada,we had some of the strictest lockdowns in the world) restrictions and mask mandates.

  20. So I actually work in an ER and was swimming in COVID for a while. This was especially concerning in the pre-vaccination days. I'm one of those people who catches EVERY respiratory bug out there and usually have a couple of bad colds/bronchitis every year that make me really miserable for a few weeks.

  21. Right! I usually get a cold a couple of times a year (I have kids). During covid, since everyone were wearing masks, I didn’t get sick (except for catching covid).

  22. This is true! I used to get several colds a year with terrible sore throats and sinusitis. Since the pandemic, I have only been sick twice, and both times were because I met with someone indoors without a mask (the only times I did so, oddly).

  23. I’ve always, ALWAYS gotten some form of upper respiratory illness in the winter. A bad cold, the flu, chronic bronchitis, you name it. When Covid first hit, I assumed I’d be taken out like a light so I masked up and locked down. After getting my vaccines I’ve lightened up, but I still mask up in public and take precautions.

  24. I wish this was more common. I still give a lot of space to people in front of me when I’m standing in line, but inevitably the person behind me is always right on my heels.

  25. This for me x 1000! My entire adult life I’ve always had a pet peeve about others peoples lack of awareness for others personal space. Particularly standing in line for something. This was like heaven for me for almost two years. Now no one gives a crap and it’s back to the normal bs of people jammed up in line and wherever else.

  26. Finn here. It was awful when it was mandated that we must be six feet from everyone else. Fortunately the restrictions were lifted and we can stand further away from each other.

  27. My girlfriend and I decided to quarantine together even though we had only been dating for 6 months and, honestly, I didn’t know if it would last. Better to not be alone, though.

  28. I moved in with a girl I had just started dating in January and we had fallen madly in love with each other. It was literally the best time ever for about 6 months, my job was abnormally stress free at the time and she was graduating school. We basically both had the summer off and just hung out together, walked to the park, had way to many wine nights, zoom parties (lol) and watched a lot of amazing content for a few months we just watched mob related things ahaha. It was amazing and I miss that part of my life quite often seeing as the relationship didn't last even when we tried a second time. I'll always look back on the pandemic and have that weirdly blissful few months where the world was ending but ours together was just beginning. I still love and miss her. I will never forgot our time together and often wonder what if a few little things were different and we were still together. I think about reaching out to her almost daily still after a year of us being apart. Not even to get back with her but just cause I genuinely want the best for her and wonder how she is doing often.

  29. This is really wholesome. Feels like a cute short film that would play before a Disney movie or something. What a fond way to look back on the beginning of your relationship, I hope you have many many happy years together.

  30. Spending time with aging pets. I had to put down a cat and the last few months he got to lay on my keyboard and purr all day. I also have an old dog who is nearing the end and I’m really happy I had those months at home with her.

  31. I also lost one of my cats last year. I’m so thankful I had a full year of being home with her and getting all the cuddles. I miss her everyday but knowing I was present all the time for her in her last year does bring me some peace

  32. You're right, my cat passed away two weeks ago, and I'm glad we at least could spend some more time with her over the last two years. It was nice to have her around to keep me company during the worst of it.

  33. Lost several elderly rescued dogs in quick succession over a course of about 6 months starting late 2021. I work 100% remote so got to spend a lot more time with them than I'd been able to working an office job. Glad you got extra time with your furry friends as well.

  34. This right here. I unfortunately had to put my dog down in July of 2020. From March up until then I got to spend all day, everyday hanging out with him in the backyard and watching movies on the couch. Having those last few months together meant a great deal.

  35. My cat passed away last year and, looking back, I'm so thankful I was able to spend the last two years at home with him.

  36. Same, I probably wouldn’t have seen my older cat’s seizures without WFH. Got her treatment and she had a comfortable last year and I got to be with her every minute of it.

  37. Prior to the pandemic, I travelled every week for work. For 6 years, I only saw my wife and kids on the weekends. And even then, I didn’t get to see my wife much since she worked most weekends. Since the pandemic, I haven’t had to travel at all, and have a new, much better relationship with my wife and kids.

  38. Opposite for me. Spending 24 hours a day with my wife and the kids put a huge strain on our relationship, along with both of us drinking more than we should have (only after the kids were in bed.)

  39. Wife died August 2020 of cancer the lockdowns meant I could grieve without any pressure. In the long run, this saved my life.

  40. I lost my son in May 2020 and I'm glad I didn't have an expectation of keeping face while grieving. Friends heard me talk or read my messages but I didn't have to smile and pretend I was fine. I strongly believe that is why I'm okay now.

  41. My dad passed in May 2020. Honestly having no wake (viewing) and a tiny family funeral made things easier for my mom. Nothing really needed to be planned as they already had crypts (vaults?) for their ashes.

  42. Somewhat related, my buddy's wife died about a year into the pandemic from non-related long-standing issues. He was able to work from home for that year, and be with her far more than he would have had the pandemic happened.

  43. Us too. I lost 60lbs, my husband lost nearly 100. It’s just because we had no bad food in the house and there was no temptation to go out and eat.

  44. Congratulations. I went the other way and gained a lot :( my company didn't have the best WFH policy and I basically couldn't step out to cook (I was salary so no lunch break) so I was finding myself ordering a lot of fast food but luckily I'm now shedding the weight. I'd give myself a full year and maybe less of serious dedication to get back to my old self

  45. I started working from home which saved me 3 hours of commuting time and gave me an additional 8hours awake time/day with my 1year old who is now 3.5. Not many fathers get that much time with their kid and I still work from home.

  46. I was a pizza delivery guy during the pandemic it was definitely awesome. I was making like $40 an hour every night. Generous tips skyrocketed when it started. I loved the group of dudes I was working with at the time. I miss that job! Best job I've ever had.

  47. Switching off. There was something liberating about not having responsibilities of a job (was furloughed in uk) no people to see, no obligations to meet others expectations. Its the period of time ive slept best in my adult life, my body would easily switch into rest mode

  48. I live on a busy street near a traffic light and it was so refreshing to sit in the living room with the windows open, barely hearing loud trucks and motorcycles, dumbass modified cars, sirens, and people sitting at the light blasting their shitty music.

  49. I'm a Pediatric Anesthesiologist. I often put kids under Anesthesia via a face mask. Covid has made kids much more comfortable going off to sleep via a mask. Hooray for small victories!

  50. I had a hernia when I was five (early 80s). Needed surgery. My parents did a great job of preparing me, managing expectations, etc.. I was so excited to get the mask. Not afraid (thanks Mom). I was a competitive little man. I thought that I could beat the gas. Bring it. You can't knock me out. I just saw Rocky III.

  51. Wow, that’s really interesting. I bet there’s a lot of little things like this that have shifted with the pandemic, and most of us will never notice

  52. I thrived in the isolation. Everyone I knew was losing their minds and here I was chilling and living my best life. Also worked from home.

  53. I always wondered: will I be bored or depressed when I eventually retire, or is retirement going to be awesome?

  54. I tell people I was built for the pandemic. I love staying at home. I am my own best company. I can entertain myself for hours. I didn't get to miss companionship because there was always a cat or two around. Cats are very agreeable.

  55. Same, I've had zero issues about being required to spend time at home because it's what I was already doing and I like it. I didn't go out much in the very early days which is ashame because I would've loved to document how quiet everything was. Also had me wondering what it would've looked like in London, particularly Westminster. Could imagine it being reminiscent of 28 Days Later when the entire area is abandoned.

  56. My depression came back with a vengeance after it ended. I've been desperately trying to switch fields to where I can work from home but with almost 10 years of being a mechanic I would be taking a pay cut.

  57. Driving down my 4 million plus population main freeway not a car in sight going 40mph only to have a cop roll up next to me look into my car and give me a nod and drive away

  58. There was a three month period right at the beginning, where there was no one on the roads, gas was cheap and things were quiet and peaceful. Let me tell you, as someone who enjoys a spirited ride on a motorcycle, that is pure bliss.

  59. No traffic to and from work. I took care of patients in the emergency room in an NYC hospital and it was gratifying. Favorite part was teaching new nurses (who were a little like deer in headlights) some new skills that they might never have the chance to see again!

  60. I lost 25 pounds when they closed all of the restaurants and bars. I learned that I don't have to go to restaurants and bars all the time.

  61. I’ve always tried to get people to take workplace/office hygiene more seriously. Too often have I seen people come into work sounding hoarse, sneeze into their hand, then go use the office coffee maker.

  62. The first week of Covid, before everyone got sent home to work, our office building ran out of hot water by 9:30am because people actually started washing their hands. I was disgusted because it meant people just didn’t do it before.

  63. My old coworker told me like ~2/3 months before COVID lockdowns she didn’t believe in washing her hands and that was what created super bugs.

  64. Employers are mostly at fault. They go from "we will fire you if you come in sick" to "how sick are you really" I remember our lab got shut down more than once because everyone in there would get sick at once.

  65. Due to the stimulus checks, I was able to leave a toxic and abusive job without a job lined up ahead of time.

  66. Yeah I changed careers twice during the pandemic. Partially because where I live every single business seems to be short staffed. The stimulus checks helped buffer things in the beginning considering I left my original career right before the pandemic hit. Gave me a bit of breathing room to think about things.

  67. People suddenly stopped expecting me to go be social. I got to spend months on end without having to decline a single invitation, it was so nice.

  68. I'm guessing you weren't invited to the many zoom party/quiz/catch-up sessions. For a time, I started to realise I was just drunk alone in my flat after those hour+ long calls.

  69. This and the resulting push for at least partial/hybrid schedules. I now get to WFH 2 days a week which is excellent!

  70. Full time work from home was the best. I'm happy to have 2 days now, but full week was a dream come true.

  71. I had already quit drinking in October of 2019 but having to stay home and leave the restaurant I was working at really helped solidify that. Three years sober this coming Saturday.

  72. Similarly I started Invisalign in the beginning months of the pandemic. It was so cool wearing a mask all the time while I got my Invisalign and teeth worked on since I had Michael Strahan looking teeth and was really self conscious about my teeth. My Invisalign treatment ended just as mask mandates ended. Taking off my mask just as my teeth were fixed was like taking the curtain off and unveiling my brand new teeth to the world. It felt glorious.

  73. I had a foot surgery Jan 2020 with an extended recovery time and would’ve spent 6months on a knee scooter. I got to safely heal at home instead.

  74. I was out cycling around the whole residential area on the first day of the pandemic. At that time I had no idea the pandemic started. I cycled for about an hour and that is the most peaceful time i had in my life. There's only bird chirping, the air breezed through my cheeks, there was no car I needed to watch out for, no unsupervised children playing on the roads and no people to stare at me while I was cycling through. But it backfired when i returned home and got yelled at by my mom. But, it is as if i was living in a "peaceful" life i never thought i would dream of.

  75. On the flip side, I hated it. People will order from us then ask where their food is. It's outside. It's been outside for an hour because you told us not to knock. Not our fault a squirrel ate your pizza.

  76. I tried to go back to getting my groceries in person but just found that our workweek was built around these deliveries. It’s just too easy to get our stuff delivered, I just can’t go back.

  77. I saw way too much of the opposite of the first two: Excessive rudeness due to people going feral or getting mad about mask restrictions or not having the same level of service as when everything was well-staffed before.

  78. Unfortunately my anger level is rising again now that those who've survived without consequence believe life is once again about them.

  79. The era of the pandemic when everyone was making foccacia bread, sipping on a dalgona coffee and watching the first season of Tiger King to later laugh about it over zoom.

  80. My baby used to spend 50+ hours in daycare and got sick all the time, and then she got to stay home instead which was a life changing difference. Then I got to spend my second pregnancy teleworking instead of going to the office every day, which was the second perk.

  81. Yes! It was bittersweet being pregnant (first time) during the pandemic because it was essentially hidden from my fam/friends, scary, and spouse couldn’t attend appts. BUT working remotely with morning sickness was awesome. I worked from my bed many days. I napped when I didn’t have meetings and I didn’t have to put on work clothes or makeup.

  82. Besides the gas prices dropping down under $2/gal, the fact that people had to respect the 6 feet of space in lines. There's nothing that annoys me more in a store than when people pull their cart up 2 inches from my back in the checkout line.

  83. Tanker driver here, no traffic. Driving through Chicago without touching my breaks once was unbelievable! The police and scales(if they were open) leaving us alone to do our jobs. I want to give a huge shout out to all the Truck Stop workers that showed up so we could help keep the country running.

  84. The building of some very close friendships as a result of not being able to go out en masse. Intimate outdoor hang out sessions are something I really enjoy so having that be everybody's norm was fantastic. I may be in the minority here, but I actually rather enjoyed the lockdown lifestyle and it was a really great chance to actually develop closer relationships with a lot people of who I now call my closest friends.

  85. I was in a major depression before the pandemic hit, and would often not leave my bed for days. It was really taking a toll on me, because it's a self-perpetuating cycle of "I'm too tired and sad and want to die too much to move, but not moving and doing nothing makes me feel like a lazy piece of shit so I feel bad and that makes me tired and sad and want to die."

  86. as an introverted person: having to be social. Honestly i had many problems with the pandemic but not having to go to school was a blessing.

  87. I'm late to the party so this will get buried but I was working as a chef for a long time and while I lost my job i was able to get paid more than my salary with unemployment plus the extra relief money and my partner was able to work from home. This made it possible for me to pursue my passion. I'm now 2 years into an architecture degree an we moved to a small college town while i finish degree and my partner is still WHF. Had the pandemic not happened none of this would have been possible. I still have to work full time, at severally reduced pay, but my partners ability to work from home coupled with the clarity of not having a job for the months I was unemployed made this all possible.

  88. I met my husband and married him. Technically we knew each other before but the pandemic reconnected us. I’m so grateful everyday for what we found.

  89. I recognize that the pandemic was awful and scary for so many people, but for my husband and I it was really the best time of our lives. We got to spend all day every day together without the pressure to be productive. I actually miss it a lot.

  90. Having my first child and getting 2 weeks paternity then not having to go back into the office. Just go downstairs on my breaks and spend time with them.

  91. I got a new job in March of 2020 and a month later we moved to work from home permanently. I also wound up getting pregnant that year, which was a little scary, but also nice because I didn’t get touched or pestered or anything a single time in public because everyone wanted to stay away from eachother.

  92. Not being asked out by friends and family, and having to come up with excuses not to go. Spending so much time focusing on me and my health instead of having my social anxiety effect my every waking moment. That when I did go to out to the stores, people stayed the fuck out of my bubble. In some ways, I’m pissed we are “back to normal.”

  93. Being able to hear a huge range of bird song that I didn’t know you could hear in North London, all down to a massive drop in background traffic noise

  94. As a photographer, I got into birds during lockdown. I’d notice birds in the sky but they were just…birds. During lockdown I’d sit on my back patio and snap pics of all the different birds I saw. Got an identifier app. Turned out I had over 20 different types of birds frequenting my yard. Never knew!

  95. I found out how much I love to sing along with some of my favorite songs and to memorize the lyrics by belting them out while I work.

  96. Wearing a mask. It was annoying at first, but I came to appreciate being able to hide my resting bitch face. Now when I don’t wear a mask, people ask me what’s wrong. 😅

  97. Nothing for me that was my worst year ever... I was 11-12 when it started and my dad (suicide) and dog (heart failure) both passed away and now it is just my mom and I. During covid I could not hang out with any of my friends and I was just depressed for not being with anyone and it was horrible. (side note: I am better now and am on anti-depressants.)

  98. The influx of educational videos on the internet. Colleges shut down, and many courses (I'm in bioengineering) opted to post lecture videos and slide show presentations on YouTube. So much content that was once barred by the doors of a lecture hall is now out on the web, free for anyone with internet access

  99. When NYC made public service announcements asking people to stop smoking weed before going to the hospitals because it was messing with their ability to diagnose and treat them. PSA I'd never expected to hear prior, but sums up the craziness and anxiety of those first weeks. It was weirdly reassuring to hear maybe? Like, yeah...it's not just me, everyone is treading water. Maybe not "best part" and just "personally memorable", idk.

  100. Around March 2020 when everything started to get really bad here in the States, the Starbucks district in which I worked closed down for a full 30 days. During that time, everyone was paid what they would have worked, given their typical schedule, so I didn't have to worry about my income. As it turned out, I hadn't gotten around to writing my Master's thesis, although I was finished with my research. So, I started working around 5 to 8 hours a day, 6 days a week, until I had to go back to work. Over those 30 days I was able to write over half of what became a 110 page draft. I'm now the proud recipient of an MA in Philosophy!

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