Well, this morning I sat down to write some people an email to wish them well this holiday season. As I wrote, I realized that there were a lot of folks I could address such a letter to.
So I decided to write a web post instead.
As I sat down to work on the next installment of my latest novel, it struck me that my Australian friends would wake up to Christmas morning today at about three o’clock my time on the 24th. So maybe it would be a good idea to wish you all Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas in whatever tradition, if any, that you follow.
You all know it’s an odd holiday season here in the States; some 326,000 families, including my own, have lost someone to the plague this year. My immediate family will be quarantined until next Wednesday, so far I’m the only one who has visited the hospital. Hopefully it stays that way.
You’d think I’d be pissed at something. There are solid reasons to be unhappy, and some obvious targets for blame.
I’m not. This house is warm and dry. My bed is comfortable. I like my family. We have internet. Tomorrow we will exchange gifts and feast. Also, while I dare not visit my parents, they are alive and we can FaceTime. And oh yes. I have a rewarding occupation in retirement, and interesting and helpful friends as a result thereof.
So thanks. Seriously.
Even in this dumpster fire of a year, surrounded by social, economic, medical and political wreckage, there’s reason for hope.
Strangely enough, I take hope from the lessons of our ancestors. 1918 was bad. We survived it. Within my family, the bitter winter of 1944/45 exists still within living memory. An awful time. Let alone such years as 1348, or for Americans, the terrible spring of 1865.
We are way ahead of our forebears. As we speak, millions worldwide are being vaccinated against this plague. Our medical professionals, who have taken on the brunt of this disaster, are first in line for the shot. As it should be.
So to all my friends and readers worldwide, stay strong and thanks again.