I decided I was going to risk it.
I was going to wear a T-shirt on our walk … and shorts.
I even made sure it’s a Syracuse shirt for their big game against Virginia.
The gamble paid off, even though the walk was after the game and my shirt clearly didn’t bring my team enough luck. It was a glorious day, sunny with temperatures in the upper 60s, maybe even touching 70, although shorts, not-yet-melted snow and the dregs of salt laid down after previous snowstorms made an interesting combination.
While it was nice not to have to hope that whatever sweatpants/sweatshirt/jacket/hoodie combination I was wearing would be warm enough, my mask was as ever folded in the pocket of my shorts in case someone came along. At least I didn’t have to take of gloves and a hood to put it on, and it was less likely to fog up my glasses in the warm weather.
I came home to find my blogging buddy and huge Virginia fan Jackie celebrating the victory. We chatted about the game, and she sent me a post she wrote at the end of 2016 because she figured I’d appreciate a photo at the end of a Syracuse player consoling one of the Virginia players after the Orange beat the Cavaliers to get to that year’s Final Four.
I did, and I also realized that Jackie has been a really good blogger for quite a while.
But the way she started also struck me: “When December 31 turns to January 1 on Saturday night, 2016, the good, the bad, the strange, the crazy won’t magically disappear.
No kicking the year to the curb, kids. It’ll still be there, hanging around in your mind with important thoughts like, ‘Did the cat get stuck in the closet again?’”
Four years later, of course, perhaps the nicest thing you could have said about 2020 is that it would become 2021 eventually.
”Be honest … before coronavirus, how often did you wash your hands for more than 20 seconds at a time?”
That question, part of the list for people I tagged for the Secret Blogger Award, was the first reference to COVID on this blog, last March 13. It was my last day of the Before Times (although the general consensus seems to be that it was a year ago today).
I had gone to my networking group that morning, had played pickleball the day before and attended a photography class that Tuesday. The rest of the photography class was canceled; I didn’t play pickleball for months after that, and the networking group is now on LinkedIn.
A few days later, I wrote about how seemingly everywhere that had done business with us recently (and a dentist I hadn’t been to in years because I moved) wanted to update us on how the steps they were taking to deal with the virus.
One of the comments I got said, “It is a crazy time for all of us. Everything seems to be spiralling (sic) out of control but hopefully, with all these new precautions, we will get back to normalcy soon. Stay safe!”
That certainly was the hope back then. Right after everything started, I remember an expert of some kind saying on the radio that the rest of March was canceled, April was probably going to be canceled and if everything went right, maybe we’d get May.
Needless to say, it didn’t quite work out that way.
Eight years ago, Suzi and I went to Asheville, North Carolina, to visit one of her best friends from high school, her friend’s husband and their little boy. (He’s not so little now.)
Out of nowhere, the husband asked me if I knew a particular person.
Other than having replaced her in a job when she got a promotion, her helping me learn the position before she left, her being my boss’ wife and having gone to parties at their house … I didn’t have the foggiest idea who the woman was.
Turns out, they had grown up in the same town outside of Philadelphia, and she used to drive him to school.
Suzi’s friend and her husband divorced, but I’m still friends with him on Facebook. He recently posted that he had found out from a friend that the main vaccine location in the next county was taking walk-ins with no restrictions, so he went and got a shot.
Sure, he said it’s a reflection on how crazy vaccine distribution is right now, but he wasn’t about to turn it down, and I don’t blame him.
I’m always happy to see people I know get vaccinated, but to the best of my knowledge, this wasn’t like the others. This was the Johnson & Johnson vaccination, so he’s done — no second appointment … once the vaccine fully takes hold in a couple weeks, he’s all set.
Am I envious? Of course I am, even if I’m not mad about it.
Oh well, maybe the new registration website coming in Massachusetts will make it easier when my time eventually rolls around.
Nobody was fooled by today’s weather.
This is a classic New England false spring, one of those stretches of pleasant conditions that pop up from time to time before we return to our regularly scheduled cold and precipitation that may be rain or may be snow, depending on how the temperature gods feel that day.
Everyone in this part of the world knows the first one … or first two … or first three … or first however many don’t count, and as the forecast turns to next week, it’ll be back in the 30s and rainy on the days it gets warmer.
But even though this version of the spring is false, I know the real spring will come — really, I do — and hope other good days will eventually be ahead.