I just saw a four word quote that tells, for me, the current story of what I call the time of emergence. The words: “I miss smiles.”

During the long days and months, as we struggled with mega challenges, and everyone (some reluctantly) started wearing masks almost everywhere.

We (most of us) understood the need to convince ourselves that masked we were doing the right thing – and maybe like me, we were made to believe that we were Lawrence of Arabia in a sandstorm, the Lone Ranger, Hannibal Lecter, Darth Vader gushing “I am your father” or even Zorro (the fox who is cunning and free) – just one of many masked cinematic images from our past. But we knew we were trying to convince ourselves we were doing the right thing by being masked walking down the street, going to church, and going to the supermarket where we even had to make sure we were walking in the direction that the arrows went. indicated to us. .

So many times I have wondered who this person was that greeted me as she wore something garish covering the majority of her face; or, two, looking in the eyes of a masked person who looked familiar, but wondered who he was, and felt he was thinking the same.

How many times have you walked halfway from your car to the market or convenience store and silently cursing as you turn around to retrieve your forgotten mask. Worse yet, walk into the store only for all those masked people to stare at your bare face thinking bad thoughts because you forgot to wear one.

Well, it seems our masked existence is over for the time being, as we can greet our friends again knowing that it is in fact them. And what do we do? We smile.

As we emerge, sometimes we let things drift from our minds. Here is an anonymous quote that I plan to hang on to.

“We are April 25, 2020. We are 23 days away from social isolation. Gasoline prices in Dover are $ 1.60. Schools have been closed since mid-March and lessons are taught online. This will continue for the remainder of the school year.

There are lines / bands inside the stores on the floor to keep people six feet apart.

Bars and restaurants are only open for take out, home delivery and pickup.

Parks, beaches, hiking trails and places to walk are not accessible to the public.

All major and minor league sports competitions have been canceled as well as children’s sports.

Weddings, family celebrations and birthdays have been canceled. Funerals were limited to 10 to 20 people.

All festivals and entertainment events have been banned.

People make parades behind the wheel to celebrate birthdays.

Young children cannot understand why they can only see grandparents or other extended family members and friends on a screen or through a window if someone is visiting in person or on Facetime online.

Hugs and kisses are not exchanged.

Churches are closed or online.

We must stay away from each other more than six feet.

Shortage of disposable masks and gloves in hospitals.

There are fewer fans than there should be.

People wear masks. There are places that even require you to wear them to enter. People even sew their own cloth masks to sell or donate to medical institutions.

Toilet paper, disinfectant, bleach, antibacterial wipes, and anything Lysol or Clorox are scarce and limited per person if you can find them.

Stores close early to disinfect. Twenty-four hour shops close even at 9 p.m.

Store checkouts, drugstores, and even fast food in the windows have added plexiglass between the employee and the customer. You have to reach more or less to pay.

You cannot easily find isopropyl alcohol. Offer per person is limited.

Australia, Canada, Europe and the United States have closed their borders.

Western Australia was divided into 9 territories and an instant fine of $ 1,500 was imposed for crossing a border into another territory without a valid reason.

No one travels for leisure, the airports are empty.

“Why am I posting this?” says the author. “Next year and every year thereafter, I’ll be posting this on my Facebook memories feed. And it will be an annual reminder that life is precious and that nothing should be taken for granted. We are where we are with what we have, so let’s be thankful. “

People, we are all human and our nature is to move forward. This column shows us where we were barely a year ago, our work and where we are now. We cannot predict the future, as last year showed us, but we have to remember it.

Why not all, like this person did, save this hard-to-believe year and watch it every year. Maybe, maybe it will make us better.

And always be empathetic and take care of each other.

Ron Cole can be contacted by sending an email to [email protected]


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