When New York shut down this spring, Joe Harmer set his sights on a hobby.
He got a kayak. He bought a camera. He purchased a tablet-style computer on which to sketch. He even ordered a guitar.
But as the pandemic drags into its seventh month, all of the items are basically gathering dust save for the new musical instrument.
“I was facing extreme isolation, and I didn’t want to have all that time and waste it,” said Mr. Harmer, 42, who works in sales for a tech company and splits his time between Brooklyn and Montauk. “But nothing really stuck.”
As pandemic restrictions have slowly lifted, and the city tries to recapture its pre-Covid former self, many New Yorkers are taking stock of how they have spent much of 2020.
For essential workers and many people who have been able to work from home, the days and weeks have passed like a blur. For others, who have been fortunate enough to not be struggling financially, emptier days led to helping out at food banks, working phone banks for political campaigns, demonstrating for racial justice, or if they have children, a crash course on home schooling. And for everyone, lockdowns have been about extra stress and being stuck around the house.
Some now realize that grand plans laid in March — to bake bread, sew masks, paint walls, read books, write songs, or grow tomatoes — somehow have not quite come to pass.