It's been 15 months since I lived in the school.
No, I'm not homeless.
When the pandemic hit, we were given the option to work from home or to stay in school. At that time, most of my friends stayed in, so I also decided to do the same.
The school became our home. We turned the auditorium into sleeping quarters, some of us learned how to cook, we did movie nights, and sometimes worked till midnight. It was apparent that the lines between work and personal life have been blurry, but it was all fun nevertheless.
There are moments where we miss the life in the school buildings. When physical classes were held, 3 PM was all noise and chaos as the kids ran around to play soccer. Now, it's just silence. Sometimes, the pouring rain makes the sound better. But it looks pretty still.
However, in this place lies friendship.
On weekdays, we wake up and take showers. Cook. We opened our laptops. Do classes. Submit deliverables. Eat meals. Oftentimes, we play games - child's play, board games, sports, video games. On weekends, we watch movies, go out for a walk, and buy groceries.
My friend Marvin (which I'm desperately trying to bring in Hive) and I decided to encapsulate this into a song called 'Virtual Frames'. It's about how a simple "Hi, sir" could change the day of one teacher. I wrote the lyrics, and Marvin did the music and the song performance. This guy is such an awesome artist and I'll probably share some of our works in the future.
My friends and I shot random videos of us working, playing, and doing our basic routines. If you are wondering why we're all boys, it's because our school is an all-male school with an all-male faculty. This also explains why our quarters and our kitchen are dirty. Pardon us.
As we celebrate Teacher's Day today, I am grateful for this community of teachers that made my pandemic days worthwhile. These were some of my sweetest memories, and every time I remember that school year, my heart aches for nostalgia.
As I move forward for the days to come, staying in school for most days, I shall remember the gratitude I have for these fellow teachers and the students that all made it a joy.