COVID: A trick and not a treat
What Mission students are doing for Halloween this year with COVID-19 still being around.
Death, fear, and uncertainty hung in the air last October where coronavirus (COVID-19) cases were surging in California. Many lives were ruined as people lost jobs, were no longer able to see their family/friends for the holidays, or have lost a loved one.
While it may be impossible to bring back the dead, California residents can now celebrate (semi-normally) Halloween this year.
On CNN’s State of the Union this week, Dr. Fauci proclaimed that, “I think that, particularly if you’re vaccinated, you can get out there and enjoy it.” Of course safety precautions will have to be taken as COVID-19 is still here, but with about 60% of the population being fully vaccinated, it is possible for people to participate in Halloween celebrations.
Dr. Fauci further emphasized the importance of getting vaccinated when you are able to, especially when looking at the majority of trick or treaters who are mainly ages 12 or below that are not eligible for the vaccine yet. With that being said, there are ways for people to celebrate it safely.
The Los Angeles County of Public Health has published a guide for families and individuals about safety measures that can be taken during Halloween that includes slight modifications to the usual activities.
They suggest that for people giving out candy to trick or treaters, it would be best to use tape lining up your doorway to help distance the trick or treaters or to create a trick or treating station outside where the kids can easily grab the candy and go.
Additionally, there are other recommended guidelines such as keeping gatherings small with people you know, avoiding indoor places, and wearing a mask whether or not you are outside trick or treating. That goes to say that costume masks are not substitutes for an actual mask.
Although precautions are highly recommended and may seem horrible to some people, many others have found ways to work around them and enjoy the holiday. For instance, Yu Xin Cheng, a senior, is going to go and host a small backyard gathering with her friends.
“I missed celebrating Halloween last year because of the pandemic, so this year I wanted to do something big but still keep it safe with the pandemic still raging on,” Cheng shares.
She regretfully acknowledges that while this isn’t what she usually does every year, “I’m still really excited for Halloween and I think that it will be just as fun and festive as the last few years.
However, Halloween doesn’t have to be limited to just outdoor gatherings. A junior, Amelia Chang, isn’t sure what she is going to do but says that, “I might invite a couple of my friends over and watch a couple of movies and eat candy.”
Even though it is not as festive as it was pre-pandemic, it is something compared to last year. Last year, COVID-19 cancelled everyone’s plans for the holiday where there were no vaccines available and the virus served as a dangerous risk.
Luckily with the vaccines, many activities that didn’t seem possible are doable this year and hopefully with people following the guidelines and more people getting vaccinated, the winter holidays won’t look as bad.