Happy New Year! 2021
What a beautiful day! – winter sun shining horizontally by the time I was up and about. We went to the windfarm, which was mental. The whole place was sheet ice that we kept thinking would get better as we walked, but got worse and worse. Like fools, we persevered on foot to the viewpoint, keeping to the edges, avoiding the glassy sheen of the paths. Arran looked glorious in white. Cars going vvvvvvp trying to get out and occasional poleaxed pedestrians, looking up helplessly at the clear blue winter sky.
We made it home without having any kind of incident likely to put pressure on the NHS, so that was a win.
I feel compelled to have a reflect on 2020 but feel absolutely scunnered at the outset of writing it and am therefore utterly confident that anyone reading it is scunnered at the thought of reading any further. The blinking COVID has been so pervasive, anything I could say, any angle I could come up with, any life-observation I could have – is so universal, there’s no point in having it. Annoying. But I will give it a go.
First up, there is the structure of the year. Genesis – when it all kicked off in Wuhan and we wondered whether or not it would be a thing, then it was a thing; Exodus – when we all left where we were and went elsewhere, pitched out of schools, churches, gyms, restaurants; Leviticus – rules, rules and more rules – stay at home – stay alert – FACTS – hands, face, space; Numbers – doomscrolling every day at 12.20 for the day’s stats; Deuteronomy…
Then there are my heroes of 2020 – the people who adapted and persevered and didn’t miss a trick – body, mind and spirit all kept ticking over thanks to the efforts of the BMF whom I love, my amazing colleagues whom I love, and the Church whom I love. I was extremely fortunate to have plenty of COVID-secure “in-person” life going on and am thankful for everyone I physically saw.
There’s also the thing about what’s normal now and how my brain has been rewired. Isn’t it odd how, when you see something on the telly that was recorded pre-covid, that you sort of wince when you see a crowded place or when people shake hands? It all looks so wrong.
Despite my lifelong social ineptitude, it is interesting to see how fundamental socialising is for us all as humans. Early in Genesis, God observed that it was not good for man to be alone. The postponement of weddings, cancellations of physical graduations, shows, concerts, parties, trips, retreats and the paring back of funerals showed us that our times of togetherness punctuate our lives; it is the times together that get remembered, that are significant.
It does make me suspect that the 20s will be, yet again, roaring.
Uncharacteristically, I do hope so.