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Charlie Rio


This year has had a negative impact on most of our society. All over the news, I watch the upsetting reality this year has had on so many people. Economic struggles, increasing unemployment, and the rise of mental health issues are just some of the distressing problems all the countries across the world are sadly suffering from this year. Although personally, I have tried to be positive and optimistic while being even more open-minded than ever. As COVID-19 got worse and we were forced into a lockdown, the optimist and positivity were needed more than ever.

The lockdown at the start of this year was such a unique experience for everyone. Nobody had been in the situation before where they were only allowed outside for a short amount of time. This is what impacted me the most. As I am a keen surfer (sometimes everyday) the amount of time that we were allowed outside for was a struggle. The tide comes in twice a day, turning direction around every 6 hours. Which means I had to pick the time I thought it would be best to get in the sea. Usually I would either have to choose between surfing in the morning or afternoon. Depending on the day, some decisions were easy and some were not. The timing in which the lockdown happened couldn’t have been any more difficult for us. If you surf or not, you wanted to be at the beach. The weather was the hottest of the year so far, the waves were the best in a very long time, and all of this was being policed. Being inside never felt like such a struggle, especially on the hotter

days. Finally, when the lockdown was lifted, I had all this time inside to think about all the things in life which I took for granted. Noticing all the little things that aren’t appreciated enough. Like going to the beach, meeting friends or even the ability to treat the home as a place of rest and relaxation. For me, I took things for granted like having a daily routine, access to a gym, studying/working somewhere other than the house...the list goes on.

Since coming out of lockdown and into “the new normal”, it still seems like this year’s efforts to ruin plans and dreams are stronger than ever. To fight against this year we created new ideas, goals and ways we go about our everyday lives, such as businesses creating stronger contingency plans to stay above water and people’s holidays abroad negotiated with never thought of staycations. My fight against this year is to always be positive, to say optimistic, and be open-minded.