to let us know how you are managing during these trying times.
To the editor,
I went down to lower Manhattan on Monday to take photos of Pier 15 on the east side and Pier 25 on the west side for a photo assignment.
There was very little activity on the east side promenade. The west side looked like a normal day in paradise. People were out and about like nothing was going on. The amount of people around Pier 25 included families with babies in strollers, young kids were in the skateboard park, children in the playground and children and adults playing on the all purpose field. You also had hundreds of people walking, jogging and biking along the esplanade.
I tried to keep myself from everyone that came my way, saying to myself, “Do these people really take this situation seriously?” I fully understand that people need to get out and distract themselves from this unique situation, but hopefully now when they do go out, they will use their discretion when they approach these areas and see large groups of people and look for another location that doesn’t.
To the editor,
This following is a letter written by my 10 year old daughter. It was part of her online school at Pine Street School last week. All of her 5th and 6th grade classmates had to write one.
How are you?
Actually I don’t really care how you are doing. You must feel so powerful ruining people’s lives, making the whole world go crazy. Have you even heard of social distancing? Probably not. By the way, you know the people on this earth they don’t like you. They’re not your friends. They hate you.
Now let me tell you how I’m doing.
First, luckily I’m healthy. My parents are healthy, my nanny and her kids are healthy and my family is healthy but that still makes me worried. Listen Coronavirus – I’m a swimmer and all my swim practices and the pools are closed so what if I’m not the best swimmer I can be. Also as you know my family is healthy but who knows what can happen.
Next, I’m very sad because I love going to school. I know that’s weird but I do. I also like my classmates and my teachers. We were close and now we have to do online school and I’m not good with technology. And It’s not fun having to see my classmates online sometimes glitching. Also I miss my swim team friends who are a big part of my life.
Also, why now? You made my champion swim meets disappear. Now I have no more swim practice, no more school and next you could make me have no family. Again Coronavirus why now?
But this virus also has some benefits. You bring my family together and I finally understand the talks at the table. I get to be in sunshine because of you so you also bring some surprises. You also let me sleep in a bit longer and I get to take really good looks at my house. And surprisingly I also notice nature now just from looking at my window and I see all the bright colors.
Lastly, Coronavirus – I have two bugs and a wish:
It bugs me that you ruin everything around me and it also bugs me that you are causing people to die. I wish you would go away.
To the editor,
I’ve lived in lower Manhattan for almost 20 years. During that time, it has become an increasingly popular place to live, work and visit. And while it is far from being one of the loudest spots in NYC, as many residents know, there is a fair amount of “background noise” at virtually all hours: traffic from the West Side Highway, buses and delivery trucks passing thru the local streets, the occasional motorcycle, intermittent chatter of people walking around (from the hallways of my residential building and outside), skateboards and the kids who belong to them rumbling by, dogs being walked, comings-and-goings from nearby stores and the school across the street, in addition to ferries and other boats on the Hudson river, and helicopters overhead.
Tonight, as we ate dinner by an open window in our apartment (how is it already the first day of Spring??), my family and I paused at the same moment, looked at one another and whispered “listen” — the only sound to be heard was the chirping of birds, nesting in a tree that is several floors below our apartment. We sat, wide-eyed and silent, for several minutes — listening to a song that is more often heard in a suburban backyard than in the midst of one of the biggest cities in the world.
During the years that I’ve lived here, I’ve grumbled many times about how noisy the neighborhood has become, and how much I crave some quiet in NYC. I never thought about how or why that quiet would be delivered, nor did I ever really believe that my wish for quiet would be granted — and certainly not due to a global pandemic, with its new rules and awkward vocabulary: social distancing, sheltering in place, and self-quarantine.
The bird finishes its song, and the sound of a police siren in the distance breaks the beautiful yet haunting silence of this March evening. I exhale, and begin to clear the dishes from the table — telling myself that someday soon, it will be lively around here once again. The rhythms of life will resume, along with the accompanying noise of this amazing city — and when those familiar sounds return, I will no longer complain about it.