With the coronavirus pandemic forcing many friends and family to stay socially distant from one another, there has been a surge in ideas for how people can interact in person while staying safe.
Maintaining social distance measures—avoiding physical contact and keeping at least six feet apart—while also spending quality time with friends outside of the house, is a challenge for many. Some parents are strict and do not let their kids go very far from home, and perhaps not allow their children to see their friends at all.
For those children who are allotted some freedom, their options for spending time with friends are limited.
“I try to follow social distancing rules when I’m outside,” sophomore Calista McCausland said. “Me and my friends don’t have many places to go but we always want to make sure we’re not risking getting corona.”
Not many have gone against guidelines, with new ideas for safe activities being developed. A very frequent activity is for friends to park their cars close to each other, and sit in their respective trunks while facing their friends to be able to talk to them. While staying at least six feet away from each other and wearing masks if necessary, this is one way friends have interacted face-to-face without causing any health risks.
“I had no contact with my friends for a month after quarantine started,” sophomore Valentina Forbes said. “Now, my parents have let me see a few people who I know have been quarantined so we have been hanging out like usual.”
Another idea some friends have is to engage in activities that do not require direct contact with each other, like watching the sunset on the grass or sitting in front of their homes a few feet apart.
One place that has gained popularity during the pandemic is Loxahatchee Road, where the reserve land is visited by hundreds every day. One of the few places left open, friends have been traveling through the area, taking pictures and enjoying the serene atmosphere.
“My friends and I have hung out at Loxahatchee just trying to have some fun,” sophomore Kelsie Yon said. “Even if we aren’t completely staying away from each other, we try to be safe about what we are doing.”
While options are limited, the will for some friends to see each other for the first time in months has driven many to seek alternative hangout spots. There are several options for how friends can reconnect during quarantine while maintaining the social distancing standards, with nature reserve visits and sitting in a car trunk being just a few.