Chat with Cat: “Coronacation” is not an appropriate term


In the latest installment of “Chat with Cat,” WSPN’s Caterina Tomassini discusses the implications behind the term “Coronacation,” which was coined to refer to the time away from school due to Covid-19.

Caterina Tomassini

Unless you live under a rock, you are well aware of the nationwide pandemic, COVID-19, also known as the Coronavirus. This virus caused President Trump to issue a travel ban to Europe, beginning on March 13 through the following 30 days. The virus has also called for the closing of the American-Canadian border and a devastating number of over 70,000 deaths worldwide.

So when I first heard the term “Coronacation” through social media, I was a bit shocked. I first assumed that the term was just an ignorant comment by some bored kid behind a screen, but soon discovered that quarantined Americans everywhere were using this term.

The term, a combination of ‘Coronavirus’ and ‘vacation’ is being used to describe the time millions of us have spent in self-quarantine while practicing social distancing and missing school, sports and extracurriculars among other activities.

As of now, Wayland High School students are learning through ‘Enrichment Days,’ to maintain our education, which is the first of many reasons why this pandemic should not be considered a ‘vacation.’ Not only are students still completing schoolwork from home, but teachers everywhere are stretching themselves thin to ensure that we students are still engaging our minds while we wait to return to school.

Not only does our continuous work not warrant the term ‘vacation’ but so do the global effects due to the virus. The stock market dropped nearly 3,000 points due to COVID-19, the lowest since 1987. This economic heartbreak, although it does not affect me directly, created headaches and worries across the country. My parents, who, like many adults, have invested money in the stock market, nervously watched numbers drop as the virus spread. So, no, I would not say that our time off is a ‘vacation.’

On a smaller scale, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has ordered all non-essential businesses to close to do the Coronavirus. This shutdown means that hourly workers such as waiters and cashiers are now left without pay. Even students like me, who babysit weekly for local kids, are struggling to find the money to pay for gas, bills, and in extreme cases, meals. Under no uncertain circumstances are these workers relaxed. Hence, the term, “Coronacation” is not appropriate, as many of us would much prefer to regain our paychecks.

Much of my family lives in Italy, the suffering country that reported 793 Coronavirus related deaths in just 24 hours. My cousins, who have been in quarantine for over two weeks, are scared for their country and for their families. From nearly 4,000 miles away, my family and I are worried sick that an older relative might contract the disease. This is not a time for relaxation.

So, considering the nationwide pandemic and the more than 1,000,000 Coronavirus cases worldwide, do you still think that “Coronacation” is the appropriate term to describe these unprecedented times? Sure, you might get to sleep in a bit more, or catch up on some reading, but how about the doctors who are unable to stay home and are instead dedicating their lives to treating our loved ones? This is not a vacation. This is a war to save our lives.

Opinion articles written by staff members represent their personal views. The opinions expressed do not necessarily represent WSPN as a publication.