It was a year ago this week that the United States joined the countries that were restricting ordinary human socializing on account of COVID-19. I had been visiting in Hawaii for a couple weeks and was preparing to return to Elgin when I heard that Gov. Newsome of California was ordering everyone in the Bay Area to quarantine. Then I heard that Gov. Pritzker was considering something like that, and suddenly realized there wasn’t much point in going back to the Mainland (as Hawaii people say), to an empty apartment, when I could stay on the Island and enjoy the company of my wife -which I don’t get near enough of – and work from home. She and I put together a broadcast place in our little bungalow and began to provide the first virtual services. These have evolved from barebones to consistently fine presentations.
The end of the pandemic is in sight unless the premature actions of certain blinkered Governors wreck the progress; the threat of the virus morphing into something we aren’t prepared for, and the possibility of relapse. Gov. Pritzker is not blinkered, and I expect him to be prudent.
But gloriously, it’s been a long, lonely year. We at UUCE have done well, I think, in remaining cheerful, productive, and generous. Illinois too. Most of the U.S. can say the same. Most of us of a certain age have received at least one vaccination, and I believe the President when he tells us everyone will be protected by May. Government is working a lot better.
My experience getting the shot was very pleasant. The vaccination sites are bubbling with good cheer, and are some of the happiest places on earth, because our health care heroes are able at last to help prevent more cases, to go on offense, so to speak, and crush Covid.
I wish you all well as we pull out of this pandemic and begin to think about returning to life as before. It will be interesting to see how much of our pandemic lives we end up retaining. Less commuting to work is a candidate for retention.
In the meantime, we need persistence, love, and luck, and a little more patience.
Rev. Leland Bond-Upson