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Dear Quarantine Hobbies

Hey Quarantine Hobbies, it’s me, your dedicated but forgetful partner. It’s been awhile, hasn’t it? Maybe this past week is the first time I’ve picked up my ukulele in four months and maybe I’m still on page 18 of El Gran Gatsby, but hey, I’ve been busy. That novel that’s not even close to being written? I’ve been thinking about it nonstop. Be rest assured Quarantine Hobbies I’m still committed.


Okay, so maybe you can tell that I’ve been really negligent in keeping up with my Quarantine Hobbies. The thought hasn’t crossed my mind in months, but when my Spanish professor asked last week if I play an instrument and I said the ukulele, I couldn’t help feeling just a little bit guilty. During quarantine, I ordered a $20 ukulele from Walmart, determined to learn and upgrade to a real solid wood one by March 2021. Newsflash! That didn’t happen. Instead, it’s sat dusty in the corner of my

room at school since January. Even over winter break when I didn’t have the excuse of homework, I only played a handful of times. Truth be told, I probably wouldn’t be playing now or even writing this article about Quarantine Hobbies if my Spanish professor hadn’t taken her question a step further and asked me to perform for the class by the end of the semester. What was I supposed to do, say no? Or even worse, show up and play a mediocre rendition of “Sign of the Times?” No, the only clear option is to pick up this old Quarantine Hobby and blow off my Spanish class’s calcetines.

My re-discovery of the ukulele did get me thinking about Quarantine Hobbies. I surely wasn’t the only one who started something only to dump it the second we were allowed back outside. Curious, I took to Instagram with a three question poll all about Quarantine Hobbies.

50% took up a Quarantine Hobby while 50% didn’t.

For the first question, I asked my followers if they had taken up a Quarantine Hobby in the first place. I never imagined the results would be split 50/50. I mean, what the heck were the other 50% of you doing? Maybe some of us didn’t stick with our hobbies, but surely it beat staring at the wall for all those long, boring months.

A staggering 37% kept up with their Quarantine Hobbies.

I’ll admit, I’m even more shocked by this number. I was expecting maybe four people to say they were still practicing their newfound interest. Clearly, that isn’t the

case. Let me start off by congratulating all of you that stuck with it; I'm proud of you. For the other 63% who gave up, I sympathize with your pain and deal with the same guilt of abandoning your developing skill. But as someone who has already learned two whole new songs on the ukulele and gotten to page 25 of El Gran Gatsby in the past week, I’m here to tell you it can be done. You can resume practicing. I promise, it’s not as scary as it may seem.

Naturally, I was curious what types of hobbies people picked up during quarantine. So, for the final question, I got nosy and asked. Shoutout to my fellow musician who is now a kickass accordion player (you know who you are). And how awesome of a hobby is glass painting? It turned out a lot of people really invested their time in baking, yoga and fitness, so kudos to everyone trying to better themselves. 2020 might have been taken from us, but that didn’t stop us from making it count.

What I learned from this little trip down memory lane is that it shouldn’t take a life-altering quarantine to try new things and stick with them. It was absolutely easier with all of that time on our hands, but when I was teaching myself “Hey Jude” on ukulele this week, I realized how much joy it brings me. So, I’m vowing to commit time to myself and my Quarantine Hobbies. I might fail and forget by this time next week or, who knows, I might finally have that wooden ukulele by June. Afterall, I think we all owe it to these wonderful Quarantine Hobbies that kept us company during those horrible months of 2020, don’t you?


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