This could be the Year of Cancellation. We might want to completely forget this annum of 20/20 vision, where we learn all kinds of ugly things, but for many people, this is the Year That Could Have Been.
Senior sports seasons. Olympics. Proms. Graduations. Trips abroad. Vacations. Weddings. All these and more have been altered, postponed or flat out cancelled. People are adjusting, sometimes angrily, sometimes tearfully, sometimes philosophically.
Gunnison High School, for instance, went so far out of its way to make graduation extra special for the Class of 2020 that it might just have latched onto a new tradition. Each graduate, in cap and gown, accompanied by immediate family, was brought in individually to film crossing the stage to receive a diploma, and on graduation day these were all aired consecutively, along with speeches and even a remote choir performance.
Then the graduates all got into cars and wended (and wended) their way around town, where many, many people turned out to cheer them on, lots of them wearing school colors or even their old letter jackets. It allowed a lot more people than usual to say, “Good job; we’re proud of you.” (Crested Butte did its own version this past weekend due to a different school calendar.)
Then there are the events that require adjustment and when that first adjustment isn’t enough, even more adjustment.
Niece Emily and nephew-in-law Jed are getting married this Saturday. It’s not the wedding originally envisioned, surrounded by friends and family with a big party afterward, but parents and possibly siblings will be on hand — and Facebook, so the rest of the invitees can “attend” virtually.
Aunt Lynn purchased her plane ticket and made hotel reservations months ago, shortly after the “save the date” card that is still on our refrigerator, never replaced by the printed but unsent invitations.
Lynn, like many, is of the belief that the earlier you buy tickets, the better the price. Until the trip gets cancelled and the travel insurance allegedly purchased simply evaporates. Perhaps one hotel provided a refund, and I think the airline finally came forth with a free ticket change (not sure what that’s good for), but other hotel(s) and rental car apparently just became sustenance for companies who think they need Lynn’s money more than Lynn does.
But what are you gonna do, as Lynn shrugged it off and, since she already had the time off from work, she used her first couple of vacation days to put a million plants into the ground. She did wait, mind you, until the temperature got really hot, but why do things the easy way? So there she was, putting her new bulb auger to work out back and making a little haven for frogs in the front.
You know how it goes with those best-laid plans, right? Well, yesterday her co-worker Brenda’s father died. And Lynn, showing that work conscientiousness she always does, called the postmaster to see if he wanted her to come back to work. Which he did, so that’s where she is. Vacation!
She does get tomorrow off, because she needs to go to Montrose for a long-delayed dental appointment that may finally put her on the road to some teeth. She’s been going without most of her lower teeth for months. Some of that was required recovery time; some of it was mandated by a demanding virus and the lockdown it brought about.
So she’s going to make a whole big day of it, starting with traffic delays for road work between here and Montrose. “Up to 30 minutes,” they are promising. So that should be fun, and then the work they are doing is chip and seal. This is what you should know about the Jeep Renegade, of which Lynn and Emily are both proud owners: it was expressly designed, I am convinced, to collect rocks with its windshield.
It must be some deal brokered (or just broken) between Chrysler Fiat and the windshield companies to make everyone but the driver feel good. Before Lynn even took possession of her car the windshield was cracked by a flying rock, and I believe she’s on her third windshield so far. So chip and seal just says in advance, “Here’s another vacation expense for you.”
Once she finally makes it to Montrose, she has all kinds of fun, in addition to the dentist planned: a stop for medical supplies, a trip to Recla Metals, Target . . . don’t tell me she doesn’t know how to party.
Then it’s back to work the following day.
[Momentary time-out: The fox just caught sight of Marrakesh on the deck and was slinking ever closer even as Marrakesh moved forward prepared to go on his own hunt, or defense, I’m not sure which. That fox is not much bigger than Marrakesh, but I didn’t wait on an outcome, just ran the fox off and made Marrakesh come inside. He still wants to go out, but for now we’ll just all stay inside. With the doors closed.]
Earlier this year, Lynn found a shirt on-line that we replicated for her. I don’t know who came up with it, but it’s very clever: “Spring Break 2020, Porcho Myarda.”
Since her trip to her Wisconsin homeland was cancelled, where she was going to see all kinds of family, including the three great-niecphews we have yet to lay actual eyes on, and visit her best friend whom she hasn’t seen in years and who has some pretty severe health issues, at least Lynn was going to get her Porcho Myarda staycation, filled with endless hours in the hot sun and lots of digging. (I’m telling you, no one can party quite like this.) Instead, she gets to go to work, a real break in the ol’ routine.
This was as far as I got before my Zoom at 9 this morning, and once again I thought I’d manage to finish it somewhere during the day, and it never happened. I’m sure I was winding up to some big finish, but like Lynn’s vacation, you’re getting the truncated version.