COVID-19 crisis has brought parties, football matches, large gatherings and traditional choir competitions (Dikhwaere) usually synonymous with Christmas holidays has come to a screeching halt this year.
Travel is also discouraged, which has stopped the usual great trek to the north to spend time with extended family as many decided to stay in the city and spend Christmas Day at home instead.
Spending budgets have also been cut given the unpredictable nature of the virus and its negative impact on the economy.
The Voice Reporter, CHRISTINAH MOTLHABANE spoke to Francistowners on how they were planning to spend the holidays and here are some of their views.
LESEDI JOZA JOSEPH, 33
We were supposed to have a family reunion on the 26th of December but due to social distancing and no gathering covid-19 protocols, our plans have been cancelled.
What it therefore means is that we will be chilling at home with our little family. Christmas this year will be totally different as we are used to going out to watch a football game on the day and at night to attend parties.
WEDU KHOLHIWE, 35
I do not have big plans for this festive season because of Covid-19, so I will be at Siviya with my family even though some of my siblings will not make it to the village.
They are in Gaborone and lockdowns affected them financially so they won’t make it.
With the few people I will be with, we will cook a meal and if it means checking relatives we will do so but no large get together for us.
MONAMETSI MOSUPIEMANG, 18
I am a photographer and I want to make money during the entire festive season so I won’t be able to go to Gweta as I used to before.
The first lockdown affected me badly financially, so this festive period I want to be busy looking for tenders to take pictures so I can boost my wallet.
If it wasn’t of Covid 19 I could be going to the village but now I am broke and I want to make money because I do not know what next year will be like.
CAIPHUS BENJAMIN, 25
I will be in Francistown as I am scared that if I travel to my village, Molepolole I might be closed there for lockdown.
So I will be here in Francistown pushing business. This year there is nothing to celebrate because of Covid 19, so it is better I prepare for 2021 as 2020 failed me.
I know many will be in their home villages but I will be here in town selling these beads and traditional cloths.
What if I go to Molepolole and when I come back I test positive or covid, which will mean 14- day isolation and a slow down of my business, which I really can’t afford right now.
CRELLA AARON, 35
My plan is to go to Selibe-Phikwe to harvest mophane worm if Covid 19 rules will allow us to.
I have always harvested Phane during the festive season because it helps a lot to supplement my income and enables me to buy my children school uniforms in January from Phane sales proceeds.