As I sit here gazing at the stars through the window I realize it has been three years since I last set foot on the mainland. As usual I have booked a window seat, for much of this overnight flight there is little to see, this time the first sight of land seems particularly significant to me.
There is just enough moonlight to see the clouds sliding below, it is only imagination and memory of past views that allow seeing the expanse of waves I know are under those clouds. As I look into the darkness I am a little confused by the pattern of stars until I realize the bright, out of place star is not a star, rather Saturn high in the southern sky.
There is a meme running around that relates all too well at the moment…
Worst month ever! What do you mean this is only the 1st?
Anonymous social media meme
This month is only four days old and we are quite ready to agree with whomever coined that meme.
Sunday, August first started out peaceful enough. I was looking forward to a relaxing day with a few chores about the house. The only nagging worry was keeping tabs on the large brushfire raging towards Waimea, though it was many miles away. As the winds picked up this worry also intensified, to where I had to the local emergency radio feed streaming on the computer speakers.
When the fragmentary radio chatter from the fire units indicated that the fire had jumped Highway 130 I knew what was coming next… An evacuation of Waikoloa Village.
Lives are often measured by the great events that take place during our short spans of existence. Wars, revolutions, social movements, mark both the great saga of human history as well as our personal stories.
The COVID pandemic will certainly be such an event. An event with worldwide impact, so many changes, so many lost.
While the start of the pandemic was slow, the events unfolding over weeks and months, I can mark it’s end as today. At least in a personal sense. Today I received my second dose of the Moderna vaccine, a moment I will likely remember, a moment that forever marks my personal journey.
This pandemic is not done, with me or the world at large. The pandemic will still have impacts, and the deaths continue, years from now when I look back this moment is where I will likely consider it done, at least in a personal sense.
For much the last year Deb and I have lived quietly, marking time, staying home. Re-discovering the small joys in life… Cooking, gardening, spending time under the stars with a telescope.
Time to move on with life. The timing seems even more appropriate in that I start a new job on Monday. I can plan for events more than a few weeks away, even consider some travel further than the shores of this small island.
It may not be over, but in my life, in my mind, it is over.