Somewhere last evening – on CNN or the radio – I read or heard there is foreseeable expectation that things will be back to normal by the summer. Today is the first day of March, almost exactly a year since the news broke of an international lockdown. It caused a precipitous alteration of everything. Learning how to negotiate the simplest social interaction was an obstruction of Olympic degree. Most conventions were difficult; many were prohibited. Plans were abandoned as either treacherous or illegal.
Now however there is hope of recovery. There is an emerging stimulus for what is to come, not the least of which is the promise of vaccination. This morning as we cycled about the neighbourhood there was a warm wind from the south. It stole swiftly over the moisture on the roadways, drying our pathway. It invited a greeting of springtime. It relieved our formerly frozen fingers. It encouraged us afterwards to hose down the bikes and let them dry before applying oil where needed. We swept the dust and grit from the storage cage. It was the beginning of Spring cleaning!
Accustomed as we’ve become to six-month division of the year we are entering what we have of late associated with being on home base in Canada. Soon we’ll be able to wear short pants once again! Perhaps dine in the country with my erstwhile physician. Or cycle upon the Ottawa Valley Trail through the magnificent rural farming estates. Or just go for a coffee at Neat Café in Burnstown along the Madawaska River.
Hidden beneath these rich palliatives is the equally demulcent prospect of a winter sojourn in Florida Keys on Blackwater Sound. The imperative is all the more compelling because of our advancing age and declining carcasses. Regularly I devote attention to the distillation of all that is important in life. Never has the caution for critical assessment been more pronounced! It is so easy to discard one thousand superfluous mandates from one’s life. The focus is now decidedly narrow and refined.
In some ways we’ve profited by the time spent lingering in Canada. There most certainly have been medical, dental and optometric attendances which would not have otherwise transpired. Whenever in the past we’ve been informed of possible critical necessity we’ve always deferred to our local advisors for the ultimate decision and work if necessary. I’ve had some uncommon association with a local artisan; as well as with a local tradesman and retailer. And – if the truth be known – experimenting with on-line purchase from Hong Kong, a burgeoning facility in the modern household.