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Coronavirus disrupts New York City trip

On March 31, 2020

The author at left with fellow Varsity News staffers at Washington Square Park in New York City.

 

BY DEVONNE MCCULLOUGH / VN STAFF WRITER

Being in New York City in mid-March, as the coronavirus scare first took hold, shattered my sense of calm into a million pieces.

Seeing hundreds of people wearing masks was eye-opening for me and millions of others. 

I had made the trip along with six other Varsity News staff members and our faculty advisor. We went to attend the annual convention of the College Media Association. 

But the city that never sleeps was finally starting to sleep after our first day.

Foot traffic declined slowly but surely.

During my time in New York, I enjoyed seeing Times Square. 

It was everything I imagined it to be in sound, experience and smell. 

The smell of the famous hot dogs sizzling on the grill, people taking selfies and the laughter of families who visited as well made visiting New York one of the best experiences I’ve ever had.

The people in New York City were friendly and optimistic.

Even though the city is filled with people who could be negative, somehow they always seemed to get through the day. 

The day was Friday, March 13, when I really noticed things turning worse.

Day by day more and more people started wearing masks in public and the crowds began to thin.

At first, I thought it was strange, until I learned from the news that New York’s coronavirus cases were increasing rapidly.

When looking at the news later that night, the city of New York was in the works of declaring state emergency. 

A state of emergency is a situation in which a government is empowered to perform actions or impose policies that it would normally not be permitted to undertake.

A government can declare such a state during a natural disaster, civil unrest, armed conflict, medical pandemic or epidemic or other biosecurity risk. 

This was not only scary for me, but also for my parents. 

Every day my mother and father called to check up on me to see if I was okay. 

It was stressful but I knew they were just concerned about my safety. 

Now that cases are up to 100,000 in the United States, times are becoming rough for most Americans as we try to protect ourselves.

It’s important for us to remember to takes precautions, like washing our hands regularly to keep our chances of contracting the virus low. 

Together we will defeat the virus as one and come together.

We can win the fight if we follow the rules.

 

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