How “Harry Potter” Characters Would Spend Social Distancing
All around the world, people are getting serious about slowing the spread of COVID-19 and practicing social distancing. Not only can avoiding physical contact with others prevent you from getting sick if you’re otherwise healthy, but it can also help protect those who have weakened immune systems from the dangerous virus going around. The easiest way to prevent a lot of people from getting sick is simple: Stay home.
Due to social distancing efforts, public places have closed down, schools have moved to online-only classes, and many people are working from home. For those of us in full quarantine mode, some are spending their time working or doing productive tasks like cleaning. Others, like me, are feeling cooped up and stir-crazy from staying in – and dare I say, a little bored.
However, boredom fed my imagination and led me to wonder: What would my favorite Harry Potter characters do in my situation?
Hermione would waste no time goofing off during quarantine. I can imagine she would be pretty nervous about the school closings happening during this time. However, time away from the classroom never stopped Hermione from reading anything she could get her hands on. Social distancing would give this bookworm a perfect opportunity to work on that list of books she’s been wanting to get through. Maybe she’d learn a new language in her free time, like Gobbledegook or Troll. Or she’d have plenty of time to work on SPEW business: button re-designs or knitting more hats for freeing house-elves. Of course, Hermione would be staying up to date on all the news regarding COVID-19 to educate her friends as well. She might be organizing a rent strike with her friends who are out of work because of the virus – Hermione’s a radical like that. Hermione inspires me to keep my mind sharp during quarantine.
For Harry, getting quarantined at Hogwarts would be ideal. Still, being confined to one place for such a long time might be difficult for Harry, who is always on some sort of adventure. Harry would be the friend you’d want in a time like this. I’m certain he would push the boundaries of social distancing and encourage his friends to hit the Quidditch pitch with him (in groups of ten or fewer people, that is). Harry always feels his best when he’s zooming around on his broomstick. Staying active seems like the best stress reliever for Harry, and there’s no better time to hone your Quidditch skills than now! Harry inspires me to keep my body moving during quarantine: It’s good for your immune system and your mental health.
Pros of quarantine for Ron Weasley: He’s got all the snacks for this occasion. Cons of quarantine for Ron Weasley: He’s eaten all his snacks by day two. Perhaps Ron would take this opportunity to borrow a page from his mum’s book and finally learn to cook for himself and his friends. Is there a wizarding equivalent of Pinterest? Because if so, he’d be scouring it for treats to make while holed up in the Burrow. I could see Ron practicing wizard chess so he could totally destroy all his friends in the future. Ron inspires me to stay social and show love to my friends and family, even if we can’t be together.
Spring has coincided with quarantine here in the United States. While watching flowers bloom all around me, I’m thinking about how Neville would love to have some extra time to tend to his garden. Getting outside is a great way to clear your head, and Neville’s natural green thumb gave him confidence and purpose while he was at Hogwarts. Maybe Neville would research medicinal, magical plants to grow or send edible plants and herbs to friends who might not have fresh food. Or perhaps Neville would focus on his flowers, which make the world a more beautiful place. Neville inspires me to spend social isolation in nature and to prioritize things I am passionate about.
Luna is a creative gal who would take time in social isolation to work on her next artistic project. I can see her helping her father publish an educational Quibbler edition about COVID-19, including conspiracy theories and instructional guides on how to DIY a face mask. Perhaps Luna would spend time sketching or working on a new mural of her friends. She might also use this time to practice some fresh dance moves or create a new pair of vegetable-inspired earrings. Luna inspires me to get to work on a project I’ve been neglecting or learn a new craft.
When I think of what Hagrid might be up to in quarantine, I can’t help but think of all the dogs who are thrilled their owners have to stay home during this time. Hagrid would keep busy by caring for his magical menagerie of creatures. I can see him fostering animals for owners who are sick or helping friends find a companion during this time. Hagrid inspires me to take my dog for a long walk and focus on caring for those who need care.
How are you spending social distancing? Did you find any inspiration from our headcanons?