Personal Blog Post: The Second Hamilton COVID Mockdown

Personal Blog Post: The Second Hamilton COVID Mockdown

Hamilton is back in "lockdown" for a second time. The entire Province of Ontario enters "lockdown" on December 26. While the second time, this one is very different than March to May.

Globe and Mail health columnist André Picard refers to the half-measures as a mockdown, which is definitely a more accurate term.

While they are half-measures, I'm doing my best to comply. Hence, this week I've returned to working from home. [I do visit my office when I need to transfer large files, my home internet is not fast nor particularly reliable]

This time, work-from-home is easier. I was scrambling back in March. Thinking back to those weeks, it is interesting to think about how much I tried to resist the change, tried to grasp onto what had been.

Thankfully, I had my duties at the University of Toronto in those first days. I then moved back to Hamilton a bit earlier than planned. A friend let me stay with them for a few weeks and even gave me their study as an office to use. In mid-April, I found a place in Downtown Hamilton and started working in my office again.

The first disruption was significant, my business plan thrown into disarray, a planned first date I was looking forward to cancelled (and thanks to COVID impossible to reschedule), not seeing friends upon my return to Hamilton, and disruptions too long to list.

I was demoralized for many weeks and found the adjusting to the isolation particularly challenging.

Working in the Office Again

Returning to my co-working office helped.

My desk at the Seedworks in late 2017

There are four HVAC zones for the Seedworks approximately 4700 square foot floor space. With only two of us, and windows open, it was as safe as can be. We kept our masks on as well. It was nice to chat every once in awhile, and to feel as if the work day had a clear beginning and clear end.

Beautiful sunlight floods into the space, and I paced the floor plate in the evening to reach my 12,000 step goal each evening.  

I even bought a standing desk.

At home, my sitting desk is in a corner with no natural light. My internet leaves much to be desired. To keep myself from feeling trapped in the corner, I sometimes work at the dining table. (I'm actually fairly productive at the table, but that's cause I allow myself distraction with split screens on my monitor, that is a discipline challenge I need to address).

Take Out to Get Out

I go out for coffee in the morning, and my local coffee shop offers take-out waffles (they have great waffles, and I do like waffles). Other days, I walk to Grandads for donuts, or Durand Coffee when I really need to stretch my legs. (Or take a selfie in front of City Hall wearing my University of Toronto gear)

It is nice to say hello to people I know as I walk as well.