Ask a Mexican

If we had all listened to early instructions, this would have been our last week of quarantine, but here we are. We asked, at a safe distance: when this is all over, what will be the first thing you do? What do you realize you miss that you did not expect to?

1. Alma Gonzalez, 49, cook.

I will go back to work and thank God for keeping me safe and having a job to get back to. I will go visit my sons and daughters and my newborn baby grandson who I haven’t been able to meet yet. I will make a huge family Sunday meal so we can all hug and kiss and talk about what we went through together, but apart. I am so sick and tired of all of this and I am very scared of what will happen next. My husband died well before this, and I am grateful he wasn’t around because he would have been at high risk. I am surprised that I miss going to work early.


2. Leonardo Ramirez, 36, gardener.

I will take a vacation to see my family on the mainland and make sure I tell them how much I care about everyone. I will visit all the places I usually overlook because I am lazy or feel like I don’t have enough time, and will savor every meal I buy at restaurants. I will take my kids to the beach and let them swim in the ocean for as long as they like, and I will too. I am surprised at how much I miss seeing people without masks and smiling at my neighbors. I also realized I enjoy being at home only when I have to go out.


3. Mariana Saucedo, 26, receptionist.

I will go to the beach and be happy about the people there, I usually get uncomfortable when it's crowded. I will go visit my sister and her baby, who I feel has grown way too much and can barely recognize as a baby. I am grateful every day, but I will be grateful for driving, I miss it so much. I will also take my boyfriend fishing, which is one of those things I feel too lazy to do because I am scared of getting seasick.


4. Cinthia Lopez, 52, nurse.

I will finally take some time off; these weeks have been very rough. I will go to a Spa, get a nice facial and massage, do a little shopping and get ice cream with my son. I haven’t seen him in a long time, and we live in the same house. I have not hugged him. I will also go see my parents who are completely isolated and very, very lonely. I am surprised that I miss being lazy, not having as much work and taking weekends off!


5. Daniel Ayon, 21, student.

I will go partying like I never have before. I am not even that big of a fan of clubs and discos, but I have a sudden urge to be in one, it’s driving me insane. I will ask the first girl I see to dance, and will not stop until my feet hurt. I also want to see my friends, who I have only contacted through video call and chat. I am very surprised at how much I miss being in crowds, I feel like I’m in a movie.


6. Eleazar Hurtado, 63, unemployed.

I will go to the hospital and hug all the doctors and nurses who took care of me and did not panic or treat me wrong, it wasn’t anything Coronavirus related, but it was very scary to be there. I also want to surprise my wife and invite her to dinner; I want her to dress up nice and have a good time. I am surprised I am no longer comfortable laying down or sitting around, I thought that was what I wanted, but no, I am very desperate to do things around the house now.