Even though we’re all trapped in our houses for who knows how long, there are still positive stories taking place around the world. Here are some that will make you smile.
These past few weeks have been hard. Between the isolation and separation from those we care about and the obvious fears about the effects of coronavirus, it can be hard to stay positive. Thankfully, there are still some good things happening in the world in this time of coronavirus; here are a few good ones to boost your mood and restore your faith in the world, even just for a little bit.
Elephants Are Living It Up
While we are all staying inside and self-quarantining, the elephants in the Yunnan province in China are having a ball. On March 19, a Reddit post surfaced about a group of elephants that broke into a village looking for food, and instead ended up drinking corn wine, getting drunk, and falling asleep in a nearby tea field. After the post went viral on Twitter, a conservationist chimed in and added that elephants do like alcohol and seek it out, often marking spots where they were successful so they can return to them. Animals: they’re just like us!
Note: the photos shared with this story are not photos of the actual elephants involved in this incident, and some of the details of the story are disputed. But this is apparently normal elephant behavior, so we’re still going to enjoy it.
Clear Water In Venice
It’s hard to imagine how this pandemic can have any positive outcomes at all, but even in Italy, one of the countries hit the hardest by COVID-19, good things can happen. For example: in Venice this month, the canals are clear! Even though this is not a result of the water quality (it’s happened because less boat traffic has allowed sediment to settle at the bottom), it sure is prettier to look at. However, the air quality in Venice is better, as is the air quality in Los Angeles, as a result of lower carbon emissions and pollution. While you’re staying inside and looking for things to do, just think about how you’re helping both flatten the COVID-19 curve and slow down global warming. Maybe that’ll make you feel a little better.
Generosity Softens The Blow of Mandatory Closures
Local businesses are struggling as the spread of coronavirus makes shutdowns a necessity. But for one restaurant in Ohio, a generous customer made things quite a bit easier to bear. On the final night of operations, a customer left a $2,500 tip with a note that asked for the money to be split evenly among the staff members. In addition to warming your heart, this story should also serve as a reminder to try and support local businesses in any way possible: buying gift cards or merchandise, ordering take-out or even tipping a little bit extra. It doesn’t have to be $2,500, but every dollar makes a difference.
Zoo Animals Are Exploring Their Surroundings
Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium is one of many aquariums and zoos around the country that are trying to fill the quarantine boredom with virtual tours and activities. Currently, the aquarium is closed, and people are not allowed to roam around. However, the penguins have been let out of their exhibit to explore a little bit and waddle around. Shedd’s Twitter account recently shared videos of the penguins as they met the fish, beluga whales and sea otters. Their Twitter account continues to be updated with the animals adventures almost daily, and also includes educational information and fun facts about other animals at the aquarium. That should keep you entertained for a while.
Vans Releases Shoe Collection Designed For Kids With Autism
Vans have released a new line of shoes designed specifically for kids with sensory issues. The collection includes eight pairs of shoes that focus on relaxing the senses through sound, touch, and appearance. These shoes are either slip-on or can mold to the foot with a hook-and-loop closure, helping kids with autism who have trouble tying shoelaces. The colors were chosen based on their soothing appearance. In a press release, Vans said they “worked with the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards to create designs utilizing Vans ComfyCush technology for all-day comfort and ease of wear for adults, kids and toddlers.” In addition, the company pledged to donate a minimum of $100,000 in shoe sale proceeds to The A.skate Foundation — a nonprofit dedicated to teaching children with autism how to skateboard.
Madagascar, the World’s Most Bio-Diverse Island, Will Plant 60 Million Trees This Year
The East African island nation of Madagascar recently celebrated the 60th anniversary of its independence, and to celebrate, the nation held a tree-planting ceremony, planting over a million seedlings in the first few hours. In the end, the country is preparing to plant 60 million trees — a million trees for each year of its 60-year history. A tremendously bio-diverse island, Madagascar has unfortunately suffered massive deforestation over the past century, losing 40 percent of its forests in the past 80 years. Last year, President Andry Rajoelina’s campaign platform promised to “Make Madagascar Green Again,” which is the culmination of “months of hard work by many organizations amassing around 100 million seeds to place into cultivated nursery beds—with schools, NGOs, government ministries, and even the army lending a helping hand,” according to the Good News Network.
Top photo via Twitter