What do you want to do most when the pandemic is over?

Travel!
I was in NC when the pandemic started and had to race home to Canada. I had a trip booked to go hiking in Poland that was cancelled. I had trips to Santa Fe and Florida planned and we were had a trip to the Greek Isles booked for this March that has been postponed.
It’s sad because Poland, Santa Fe, and Greece were all limited opportunities and I don’t know if they will ever come up again.

I’ve been going stir crazy while not being able to hit up a pub, to catch some live music or play any gigs myself.

As crazy as it sounds… I REALLY miss a big breakfast at some greasy spoon anywhere. Eggs, Bacon, toast, hash browns, sausages, pancakes, french toast, etc… and bottomless hot coffee! Bring it on!

This. Last Christmas was the first time in my life I wasn’t with my family. My favorite niece is immune-compromised, and I’m hoping to be able to fly to Chicago this year to visit her and the rest of the family.

In December I’m planning to go to the SF WorldCon in DC, and one of the things I’d like to do while I’m there is go to some of the Smithsonians. Last I checked, all but the outdoor gardens are closed to the public.

Get a haircut. I need a fire break for my hair. I will probably get my first vaccine next month, and in Canada, they want people to wait up to four months before they get their second shot.

Eat free samples at Costco and Trader Joe’s.

The wife became fully immune on Thursday, two weeks after her second shot. So today we went to a cinema for the first time in more than a year. Watched Minari.

I hate to admit this, but I am really looking forward to dropping my son off somewhere and letting him be someone else’s problem for a while. Don’t get me wrong, he’s delightful, but he’s an only child, so it’s sorta on me and my husband to provide stimulation. We’ve semi- bubbled with one family, so there have been weekly play dates in the park and a couple sleep overs, but for most of the year, it’s been on us. Thank God he’s a nice, funny child, and 9 is a sweet spot for independence and still liking your parents.

Homeschooling has been such a success that we are sending him to a hybrid school next year, but I am really looking forward to sending him somewhere out of my own experience 2 days a week, and having him have some sort of independent life to tell me about.

A few months ago, I was longing for the pandemic to be over so I could go back to singing in the college choir and the church choir, have lunch with friends again, meet my book club in person… but now some sort of long-term malaise/inertia has set in and frankly, I’m not looking forward very much at all to anything. The news around the world is so scary and disheartening… it’s hard to get enthusiastic about shopping and lunches out when they’re burning stacks of bodies in India… the divide between those of us fortunates who are fully vaccinated and able to resume normal activities and those who are still in the depths of misery (deepening every day) is weighing heavily on me. I can’t seem to look past it.

Word. Now that my loved ones are vaccinated, I’m going on vacation next week - all by myself - to visit my Aunt in another state. Best mother’s day ever.

Go to Canada. (I’m in the U.S.)

My son and I went to Ontario in 2018 and 2019. Stayed in a cabin on a lake. Had a great time and want to go back.

I have been feeling much the same way. I noticed the change in myself over the winter not really enjoying the things I used to (skiing, snowboarding, cycling), as they felt more like a chore. I think the first step is to recognize what is happening to you, and take small healing steps. I have pushed thru my own resistance to do and plan things I supposedly enjoy, and found that if I get past the initial “stuck” feeling and get-on with it, those activities really are enjoyable, and the more of them I do, the more “normal” I start to feel. Even if I start getting sucked back into the pandemic wormhole occasionally, “doing” something gives me some strength to climb up toward the light.

To your point, tho, this thing will never be “over”, but depending on the individual, we will be gaining back some level of tolerance to the new world we all have now, so we can get on with some of the things that bring us joy.

Thanks for your sensitive comments.

For myself, I’m trying to remember joy…

Take a cruise. We had one scheduled for last spring…cancelled. Then the cruise line opened up again recently and started taking bookings for this summer. Yay! So we booked a cruise for July. The cruise line then cancelled all their itineraries up through the end of July. So we booked for August…just got cancelled.

We’ll try for something in 2022.

I’m retiring soon, and we planned to spend our golden years seeing the world. I feel like I’ve lost a year and made no progress, except one year closer to The End (morbid, I know…)

Yep, that’s pretty much what I was going to say.

Pre-pandemic one thing my wife and I would do is take advantage of our local YMCA’s “Children’s Activity Nights”, where basically you dropped your kids off at 6 pm, and they’d have an evening of activities- swimming, game playing, movie-watching, pizza-eating, etc… until 10 pm.

They did this twice a month- one Friday and one Saturday, and it was a ready-made, cheap babysitter that the kids loved. We’d go out to eat, go shopping, run errands, or some combination of the above.

Hanging out on the back deck with a bottle of wine after the kids have gone to sleep is nice, but not quite the same.

Granted, but it does sound nice, albeit different.

I’d give a lot to have a somebody to sit around with and share a bottle of wine. I wouldn’t even require a deck. That would have been the case before Covid too.

But that blah slump is always hanging over things that used to fun. Reading for pleasure shouldn’t feel like a chore. Netflix should have some appeal.

Most of all I want to drive 260 miles east to Iowa and visit my sister, drink coffee and chat in our bathrobes til noon, bump butts cooking together in her kitchen, you know, all the glamorous stuff.

Then I’d like to start planning trips to San Antonio and visit my older son and then a trip to Ann Arbor to visit my younger son and his sweetie. Those trips will need to be in the fall after I’ve saved something for the traveling expenses and after I’ve settled in my new grand baby due here the end of June/first of July.

Where to start?

Comicons. I’m a regular at those and do cosplay photography, and I went from about fifty photoshoots a year down to nothing. The last con I went to was in Cleveland in early March 2020 and things were already teetering, and everything shut down a week and a half after I got back. I want to be hanging out with a convention hall full of friends dressed like superheroes and doing autograph lines with visiting TV stars.

Travel. I used to go to the UK and trek around for a couple of weeks every year and a half or so, doing everything from the Game of Thrones location tour out of Belfast to the Beatles bus tour in Liverpool, to shocking the locals in Glamorgan by dropping my fractured Welsh on them. I had already bought my plane tickets for this past October, and that trip was going to be my first proper visit to mainland Europe, spending a few days each in Amsterdam, Berlin and Paris. At this point I don’t expect to be able to make up that trip until Spring 2022; hopefully the airline with whom I booked will still be solvent then and I won’t eat the cost of the credit I’ve got.

Nightclubbing. Weekends at retro 80s clubs, surrounded by other sweaty gen-xers getting down to Happy Mondays and National Velvet. Self-explanatory.

Dating. My last date was a few days before the big shutdown in March last year, and I’ve been single since 2018. Meeting people online is fine, but with the ever-present “maybe we can meet for a distanced walk in the park in a month or two” the courtship process really stinks right now. Being single and having no roommates has made months of isolation exponentially worse.