CASTAIC, Calif. – Howling at the moon, you hear it every night starting at 8 p.m. in this Santa Clarita valley neighborhood.
Ashley Hawn and her brother Tyler have made it a nightly ritual.
“We don’t miss it, we make our schedule around it, we come out, we howl for about three, four minutes and we get to hear our neighbors and we sometimes even yell at them like good job and we’ll hear back, see you tomorrow, it’s like we don’t even know what those people look like but we know they’re there,” says Ashley.
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This all started after COVID-19 started to spread. Soon after the stay-at-home order was issued Ashley and Tyler began hearing howling in their neighborhood.
Tyler says “we didn’t know what it was for and then we heard some neighbors talking about it so we got into it and started to do it with our neighbors.”
Each night you could hear the howling grow louder as more people started joining them. The only person who isn’t howling here these days is their dog Sierra. Ashley and Tyler even spend the hours before writing messages in chalk on the sidewalk in their neighborhood.
“We have some much free time now, where we’ll write inspirational things like be strong, we’ll get through this, way your hands, just for the people that walk to see on the sidewalk, we also write howl at 8, remind everyone, come give us a try, I know it’s weird at first, I know it’s an adjustment but it’s super fun,” said Ashley.
Ashley is a senior at Cal State Northridge who won’t be able to walk in her ceremony this May. Tyler will finish 8th grade at home unable to see his classmates. For this brother and sister, it gives them a chance to get out their frustrations brought on by the pandemic.
“It gives you a chance to come outside, like, we’re all in the house all day. Just come out and howl, you’ll hear other people doing it, it reminds you that people are there. Like we’re all in this together,” says Ashley.
Those howls are a reminder that we’re not alone in this pandemic.