Ludo and Ben Oral History 09/21/2021


Title (Dublin Core)

Ludo and Ben Oral History 09/21/2021

Description (Dublin Core)

We completed this interview for our History of Global Pandemics class, which we take at Northeastern University.

Recording Date (Dublin Core)

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Event Identifier (Dublin Core)

Partner (Dublin Core)

Type (Dublin Core)

Audio Interview

Controlled Vocabulary (Dublin Core)

Curator's Tags (Omeka Classic)

Contributor's Tags (a true folksonomy) (Friend of a Friend)

Linked Data (Dublin Core)

Date Submitted (Dublin Core)


Date Modified (Dublin Core)


Interviewer (Bibliographic Ontology)


Interviewee (Bibliographic Ontology)


Format (Dublin Core)


Coverage (Dublin Core)

March 2020 - September 2021

Language (Dublin Core)


Duration (Omeka Classic)


abstract (Bibliographic Ontology)

Two current Northeastern students discuss their experiences in Covid. One of the individuals recalls London during Covid and the strict nature of the stay at home orders while the other participant in the interview contrasts this experience with the mandates and orders in parts of the US.

Transcription (Omeka Classic)

Ludo 00:00
Hi, I'm Ludo, and I'm interviewing Ben for the COVID-19 Archive project. Ben, do you give consent to be interviewed for the COVID-19 Archive project?

Ben 00:07
Yes, I give consent to be interviewed for the COVID-19 Archive project.

Ludo 00:10
Can you please state the date and time?

Ben 00:13
The date is September 21st, 2021, and the time is 12:34pm.

Ludo 00:17
All right, I'm gonna ask you some questions now. So how did schooling change once you went online?

Ben 00:18
For the most part, schooling became a lot easier. Everything was online, things became a lot more consolidated, you didn't have to deal with handing things into teachers. It became a lot easier to be productive, but also as a result of that, I would say I became a lot less adamant with schoolwork. I stopped participating in class for the most part; I definitely stopped going to classes, at least to some degree. And I think as a result of all of that, I took schooling a lot less seriously. And it didn't necessarily impact my grades, but long term, I think it hurt my work ethic. And definitely, I lost a lot of relationships with my teachers.

Ludo 00:27
In terms of habits and practices, how have you changed them during this time?

Ben 01:04
The number one thing for me is I've definitely become a lot more self conscious about surfaces I come in contact with in public, whether it be in stores, with people or on public transportation. I definitely become aware of when I touch something and am careful not to touch other things on my person, whether it be my wallet or my phone, and definitely aim to get hand sanitizer, wash my hands at the first possible opportunity. It's definitely become almost compulsive at this point to keep your hands clean, with all this going on. So I'd say that's, that's the biggest thing.

Ludo 01:39
In terms of your perception of the real world, how has that changed during this time?

Ben 01:46
Um, nothing positive here. But the pandemic really revealed a lot of stubbornness and hypocrisy in a lot of people, particularly in the US. I, already in a really political divisive time, the pandemic really capitalized on that, turning what should be a public health issue, a public health issue into a political issue, whether it be with vaccines, or wearing masks, or getting tested, just being on top of your own health really became down to what politics you follow. And I think that's really upsetting and what's really perpetuated this crisis.

Ludo 02:20
And in terms of stay at home orders, what were they like, where you lived here in the US?

Ben 02:24
Um, when the stay at home orders were first put in place, schooling became online, masks were mandatory in essential stores that remained open. Most entertainment options like, restaurants or movie theaters, things of that nature closed and masks were mandatory in stores you went in. But as for enforcement, nobody could really stop you from going outside or hanging out with friends and not wearing a mask. So not much government involvement was there other than for maybe public funded areas such as parks or beaches.

Ben 02:55
I'm Ben, and I'm interviewing Ludo for the COVID-19 Archive project. Ludo, do you consent to be interviewed?

Ludo 03:00
I do consent to be interviewed for the COVID-19 Archive project.

Ben 03:03
Please state the date and time.

Ludo 03:04
It is September 21st, 2021, and it is 12:39pm.

Ben 03:10
Okay. First question, how did schooling change once you went online?

Ludo 03:15
I definitely say that schooling took a weird turn, it became easier, which was obviously a good thing for us as students, but also connections with teachers were lost, which had a definitely negative impact on, on all of us, I'd say. And things like friendships were hard to maintain, good grades were sometimes hard to maintain for those of us that were struggling with being motivated. But it did also allow us some time to reflect on more important things like our own mental health and put that first in a time like this. And I definitely say that the, the ethic that I got into, got into which was, you know, working harder, meaning diligent and responsible was definitely a life lesson that I picked up during, during this, this time.

Ben 03:56
All right. How have you changed your habits during, since the start of the pandemic?

Ludo 04:01
I definitely say the norm like, now for me is washing hands on a regular even when just getting home. Like you said, I'm very wary of touching things on the subway. And before COVID, definitely never thought about that, had that in mind. But now I, it's definitely on my mind whenever I reach to grab a pole when I'm trying to stand straight and not fall over. At the start of the pandemic, my family and I were leaving packages outside for days on end, hearing that that would help ward away COVID if it was remaining on the packages. My mom had rules like no buying unpackaged clothing, unpackaged food sorry, not clothing. And now whenever I leave my room for college, I realized that I have a list of four things which is my phone, my Airpods, my wallet, and my mask, and obviously before COVID, that last one wasn't on that list. But I'd also say that at the same time, I got into a habit of being a lot more active on social media than in real life. And now that we're back in person in college, I noticed that's kind of taking a toll on us, but I think we're getting back into the swing of things.

Ben 05:03
Okay. How has your perception of society changed since the start of the pandemic?

Ludo 05:09
I definitely say that I became very grateful for both my family my own health. And I also came to realize the social and economic split in London, which is where I was, you know, born and raised, and I spent the entirety of COVID. And I just, I sort of realized the, the split in between the different worlds that you don't really notice, but this, you know, this time has definitely helped shine through. I've come to appreciate the healthcare that I have access to in a first world country, and I've definitely taken my healthcare more seriously, like I was saying, getting into those habits, those good habits that we're all getting into. But I've also like, realized that we have a societal role to take care of each other, which is why, you know, we got vaccinated, you know, not mainly to protect ourselves as young kids, but to protect the oldest people and the the ones that are, that are at risk.

Ben 05:57
All right. What were the nature of the state home orders where you live?

Ludo 06:01
In London, it was, it was pretty crazy. There were masks everywhere, inside and outside from the get go. There was no excuses, there was police checking it. And volunteers on the streets making sure people had them over nose and mouth. Definitely say it was eerie for the first few months, you know, turning corners on streets, my parents told me to make a wide loop in case I brushed up against someone and the times that that happened once or twice my parents definitely gave me some hard time for that. But this was you know, in the time when we really knew nothing about the pandemic, just yet. Everything was said to be lifted July 19th of 2020, sorry of 2021. And that turned out to rebound real quick, and it's, it's honestly more tragic than anything that, that's what the UK had in mind. And it really just didn't turn out that way. And they realized that they needed more time to solve this crisis. And at first you know, you could only leave home to exercise to shop for essentials to go to the doctor and to go to work if you had to work in person. So we had no real excuses for anything else. And you know, only essential stores were open, restaurants like you said were closed, movie theaters were closed, and it was, it was honestly like a zombie apocalypse. You'd walk out into the most you know, touristy parts of London, and it will be empty. It will be completely empty.

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