'Cozy Grove' rescued me while I was on the train for 35 hours
From the days of the Game Boy, carrying capacity is the greatest joy of handheld gaming. From a park bench to the back of a car, anywhere can be a place to push buttons. This has become even more true in the last two years, when being able to play while reuniting with the outside world has become a way of address Covid-19 concerns. Last week, however, I discovered a whole new resource: Helping to keep me cool while I was on a train for 35 hours - with a baby.
This announcement came as a result of the kind of catastrophe that was fitting for the beginning of 2022. Like many other families, my family had a problem with what to do during this holiday season while and Omicron's affairs were going up. My husband and I eventually decided to get out of the cold of Philadelphia and take our toddler south to my parents' house, drive down and take the Amtrak train back. We could part with my family, and, on the way home, try to keep Covid-safe in a private cabin. But, like many others, we were caught up in a severe snowstorm in the Northeast last week, leaving cars lost on I - 95 in Virginia, and we were involved in the our cabin with little to do but wait.
The trouble started around 5:30 am, when I woke up to find that the train was not moving. There were trees down the routes between Richmond and Washington, DC, and we could not move until they were cleared. In a surreal version of events, we did not receive any updates until close to noon as the train conductor forgot to include our car in advertisements. We did not know when we would move again, but in many ways we were lucky. We had heating, a private space, a bathroom, and as others on the train were asking about diapers or formula, too much packaging made sure we were not hungry.
What we needed, however, was a way to keep our little one from turning into a weeping liar. We had an iPhone 12 Pro with mature battery life, an iPad, and a Nintendo Switch. It was the last one, and in particular Cozy Grove, which saved us all.
I like to tell Cozy Grove as a kind of interrogation Animal cross. You are a Spirit Scout and your job is to help ghost bears around your island to regain their memories so they can move on peacefully. It's a quiet, calm game, and while playing definitely helped alleviate my hostility about the situation, my child got most of the benefits, instructing his mother several show him things on the island - whether it's fish, Mr Kit ("Mama, I want to see the fox!"), or a sea shell. He was particularly fond of the different bears on the island, asking me to guess which one he wanted to see. (“Is it the corn - like or the flower - like?) I easily had six - hour play sessions, which made a big difference on our trip.
At 1:30 am the next day we arrived with black eyes at our destination - 35 hours after departure. Luckily, my baby was already asleep by the time we got there, and went to bed as soon as we got home. But even after he moved away, I kept going around Cozy Grove island. It's still a perfect escape, even though I'm no longer locked up.
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