Lockdown snowman

OUR LIVES Level 5 · pages 16-17

Lockdown snowman

Julie is sitting in front of her laptop*. She is staring into the small tiles* on the screen. Each little tile shows the face of one of her classmates. Some are wearing headsets some are not. The teacher is telling them about today’s assignment*. Julie isn’t paying attention*. Her mind* drifts off*. She is thinking about how long it has been since she has seen her friends in real life. Julie is sad, she misses her friends. “Are we ever going to live a normal life again?”

In another house, not far from Julie’s house, Marcus is sitting in front of his laptop. He is having problems with his internet connection*. He is trying to access* a school meeting, but the page keeps lagging. Marcus sighs. He leans back into his chair and starts thinking about Corona. “Corona.” What a beautiful name for something so scary*.

Marcus feels alone. He often thinks about the disease*. He is very worried* about his beloved* grandmother. What if she gets ill? She is not that strong anymore

It’s lunch break. Marcus’ mother enters* his

room. “Hey …”, she says in a low* voice*, seeing his sad face. Why don’t you go out and build a snowman? It’s actually snowing heavily* for the first time in years”, she says with a smile.

Marcus puts on warm clothes and goes outside. A little smile lights up his face. It is snowing heavily. And the snow is perfect for building a snowman.

Busy* rolling a snowball, Marcus jumps* as he hears a voice saying his name. He looks up. It’s Julie from his class. “Hey Julie”, he says. “Do you want to help me build a snowman?”

The two children work on the snowman together. A large snowball makes up the body, and a smaller snowball is the head. Julie finds two stones they can use for eyes, and Marcus goes inside the house. A minute later he shows up with a carrot and his father’s ski hat* and scarf*, and a face mask. The snowman gets his hat, nose, and face mask in place, and the scarf around his white, cold neck.

Thrilled to be together and working

together without being separated* by a computer, the children laugh and cheer* and take photos of their beautiful snowman. Marcus’ father appears* in the window he has heard the noise* outside. A little later, Marcus’ mother brings them hot chocolate and cookies.

At the dinner table, Julie tells her family about the snowman. “I think I’ll ask Marcus if he wants to go sledging* tomorrow”, she says.

Later that evening, lying in his bed, Marcus thinks about his day. What a great day. How nice it was to see Julie in real life. He decides that he will call her tomorrow and ask her if she would like to go sledging.