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Six ways to fight boredom while self-isolating

From watching the Northern lights to hosting an online Karaoke party here are a few suggestions that will keep you indoors for a few weeks more.
Loraine Balita-Centeno Toronto, ON

It’s week three of our self-isolation, and we know you’re feeling more and more like the characters in that post-apocalyptic Netflix series you’ve been watching. Now that you’ve probably run out of movies to stream, Korean dramas to binge-watch, telenovelas and drawers to Konmari, you’re probably looking for more creative ways to amuse yourself so you can stop scrubbing your oranges with wet wipes.

Hang in there, we’re giving you a few activities you can do that will help you feel a little bit less isolated and more connected with other people while in self-isolation! From watching the Northern lights to hosting an online Karaoke party here are a few suggestions that will keep you indoors for a few weeks more.

1. Watch the Northern Lights Via Live Cam

You have got to see this one! The amazing people at Churchill Northern Studies Center in Manitoba hosts a website with live cameras to give people at home a glimpse of different places around the world.

One of which is this live camera placed directly underneath the aurora oval, which is considered the best place on Earth to watch the Aurora Borealis. Since this is a live camera you’ll have to wait for night time otherwise all you’ll be seeing there is snow and a dome.

Wait for it to get dark and prepare to be amazed. You can try turning the lights off and watching this on fullscreen in your TV. And get this, the best months to see the Aurora Borealis are in February and early April—which is right now!

If Northern Lights aren’t really your thing you can switch between the other live cameras on the website so you can instead watch waves in a beach in Hawaii or some horses in an Equine adoption center in  Kentucky.

2. Host an Online Karaoke Party Via Zoom

You know that nifty app you’ve been using for conference calls? It’s not just for your boring meetings, and ho-hum presentations, it’s also for online parties, yes, even karaoke nights with your friends. Wouldn’t it be nice to belt out all your pent-up frustrations about self-isolation in your pajamas while in the company of friends you haven’t seen in weeks?

Aside from Zoom, you’ll also be needing Watch2Gether, an app that will let you watch videos and listen to music together in sync. So Zoom will allow you to create this virtual space where all of you can see each other on camera and you can watch Youtube videoke streams on Watch2Geder. There are tons of them on Youtube.  It’s almost like hanging out in person without exchanging germs and sneezing into each other’s eyeballs.

3. Watch Classical Concerts on Live Cam

If you need a relaxing escape from the chaotic marketplace of ideas that is your newsfeed, this one might be for you. Many classical concerts and shows have been canceled in the wake of the pandemic, but according to these artists, the show must go on so they’re performing without an audience but are streaming their performances on live camera.

From the Met in New York to the Royal Opera House in the UK there are several organizations live-streaming concerts in HD. The Berlin Philharmonic for instance now gives out free concert vouchers so people can access their Digital Concert Hall. There’s a full list by Classic FM that includes classical music organizations that are live streaming or have an online concert archive you can watch from home.

4. Visit The Vatican

Italy has been suffering the onslaught of the pandemic, most of the tourist areas are closed as they deal with the spread of the virus. It also might take a while for us to visit the country again because they will need time to recover. While we are waiting for them to open their doors again we can go on this virtual tour of the Vatican Museum.

The 360 tour allows you to roam around the different areas, stare at the sculptures curated by Popes, the way you would in person, and see iconic exhibits sans the crazy crowd. You can even enter the Sistine chapel, “lookup” and marvel at Michaelangelo’s ceiling.

5. Attend an E-Zoomba Class

Zoom is having a moment. It’s this season’s app superstar, like a gift that keeps on giving. Not only can you use it to host a conference call or a karaoke party, you can also use it to join Zumba classes online. Isn’t it amazing? Now you don’t have to worry about missing your group exercise sessions and gaining 50 pounds while on self-quarantine. The best part about this is you can join the class with a whole bunch of other people without worrying if anyone’s staring at your jiggly butt behind you.

Many gyms are adapting to self-isolation and are now offering not just Zumba but a myriad of other exercise group classes online. For instance,  Soul Studio,  a fitness studio based in Vernon British Columbia, has a virtual community where they offer 14 Livestream classes people can choose from. Aside from virtual Zumba, they have virtual Pilates, Barre, and Pound classes among many others.

6. Go to Virtual Pub With Thousands of People

It’s like going to a pub with thousands of people while inside your living room. Facebook pages like The Virtual Pub have been springing up lately and getting thousands of visits from “patrons” who want to drink and be merry while in self-isolation.

Virtual Happy Hour- April 3

Virtual Happy Hour- April 3

Posted by Rep. Vikki Goodwin on Friday, April 3, 2020

These online pubs host live music, pub quizzes, and comedy shows via Facebook Live. You can join the fun and pour your own booze while in pajamas or whatever it is you wear in the living room. Musicians who perform send out their Paypal details so people can donate if they want to. Quiz nights are especially fun since people can answer by posting comments.

It’s really like being in a pub with other people and drinking all the alcohol you can get your hands on at home,  without the brawl when people get too smashed or patrons driving home intoxicated, or having to pay your tab.

Who knew we could socialize in isolation? With orders to stay home and keep away from people, many are getting creative, finding ways to amuse themselves and hang out with each other without exchanging germs. A few more weeks into this and we’ll see more and more activities move online. We’re excited to see what people will come up with next.

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Loraine Balita-Centeno
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