The Year Ends As It Began

What will 2022 bring?

Shannon Page

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Last year at this time, we were finishing up nearly-a-year of pandemic. So many things had been canceled, closed, postponed. We celebrated a quiet Christmas with just my mother-in-law, who was staying with us — she had basically moved in after there was a covid case in her senior community.

Last year at this time, we’d been through quite a year, but there was hope in the winds: not one but two mRNA vaccines were showing great promise! They were being fast-tracked toward emergency-use approval, and more research was underway. Soon, we thought, we’d be able to get vaccinated and then the world would open up again!

Last year at this time, there were even some promising signs in the political arena here in the U.S., though things were still a bit uncertain.

Well…now it’s a year later. We got vaccinated (yay!), and even boosted. The world opened up, a bit. Then delta happened, and now omicron. Everything’s shutting back down. We celebrated Christmas with my mother-in-law, and also my brother-in-law, here from Idaho, who we had not seen in two years. (We took precautions, and he tested negative twice; we remain hopeful that this will not turn out to have been a terrible idea.)

There are even some promising signs in the political arena, though things are still rather uncertain.

How long does this ride last?

In June, we left our island home for ten days and drove to California. The occasion was my brother’s 50th birthday, though we also visited dear friends all along the way, and went to some of our favorite shops “out there”.

For my brother’s party, his partner had chartered a boat for a “three-hour tour” of San Francisco Bay. We enjoyed yummy food and festive cupcakes and adult beverages — and the company of other human beings! It was a gorgeous sunny day, a celebratory gathering, hugs and laughter amid a kind of breathless, uncertain-but-hopeful sense that we’d come out of the worst of it, that yes, maybe there would be another wave, but for now at least, we could be maskless, we could see our loved ones. We could have a birthday party.

June seems SO bizarrely unreal to me now.

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Shannon Page

Writer, editor, thinker of things, living on Orcas Island, Washington state. https://www.shannonpage.net