Student: Zsofia Kovi (20, Year 2, Psychology)
Lockdown activity: drinking a lot of tea with roommates

“When I moved into a different student house in Rotterdam last summer, I didn’t know anyone yet, I felt a little lost and alone,” says Kovi. “During the holidays, I went back to Budapest for a few weeks, and when I came back, my life took a different turn, basically because of lockdown. All of a sudden I had to make do with myself, my housemates and my own immediate surroundings. Suddenly I had a lot of time on my hands that I could spend making my new room a homelier place and getting to know my housemates. We now have a lot more quality time together, and as a result, I quickly felt at home in Rotterdam and in my new life. My room is the largest one in the house, so if we wish to have dinner or study together, I’ll put up a large table, which allows us to be together while safely socially distanced.”


Zsofia Kovi teabags

“Of course I love to hang out at pubs until the wee hours, but right now, that’s impossible. Because my two flatmates and I are in each other’s faces all the time and can’t do much else at the moment, we soon started to have deep conversations, right here, at home, seated at the kitchen table, but without any alcohol. Instead, we will drink gallons of tea and play Monopoly and other old-fashioned board games. It’s been a lot of fun and I got to know my housemates very well in no time. We are cutting off the fronts of the empty packs of tea and sticking them on the wall. Yes, it’s very studenty, but it looks super artistic, because we arrange them by colour.”

Remaining positive

“Kovi got to know herself better during lockdown, as well. “Suddenly, I had enough time to do some self-reflection,” she tells us. “Who am I, and what do I want to do with my life? I have a slightly better understanding of that now. I can tell that some people I know are struggling with the current situation. They are having difficulty remaining positive and have bleak visions of the future. I myself don’t suffer from that. Despite the situation, I’m actually doing quite well, and I’m staying positive. I’m glad about that. In addition, I’ve learned that I really do need human contact quite badly. That’s definitely the direction I want to head into when I become a psychologist later.”

Old and new friends

Zsofia Kovia friends on wall

The most striking objects in Kovi’s room are the photos above her bed. “That’s a project I spontaneously embarked on during lockdown,” she explains. “I quite miss my friends in Budapest, even though I’ve made some good new friends here. During lockdown I went through all my photos, both old ones and more recent ones, and had the best moments with good friends printed and hung above my bed. Every day when I wake up, I will look at them for a moment, and then I’ll know things will be OK.”

Tessa stockfoto 2 (EM)

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