Friday, January 08, 2021

The Plague Cancels Carnival and New Years Resolutions

 Melinda Palacio 

As if the thought of Covid-19 muscling its way into 2021 isn’t enough, there’s the shenanigans from Trump supporters looting and rioting and disrupting democracy. The week started off with dismal news about hospitals throughout California reaching capacity. A brief phone call with my sister, an emergency room nurse in Bell Flower and everything Dr. Fauci said about a surge on top of a surge on top of a surge is coming home to roost. Many people decided to have big gatherings for thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years, moving everyone back to square one, back on lockdown, only this time, doctors, nurses and paramedics must pick and choose who has the highest chance for survival. It’s a dire situation that could have been avoided had we had a real leader instead of a selfish charlatan. 

Instead of focusing our collective attention on how we are going to solve this pandemic and get vaccines in people’s areas, we were distracted by trump supporters who fancied themselves storming the Bastille and starting a revolution or civil war. What we saw on television was looters who were gently shoved away and a police force absent of the type of force it wielded during Black Life Matters protests. 

This week should have ushered in the Three Kings and the start of carnival, culminating in Marti Gras. I should have been busy setting resolutions and planning on what normal might look like beyond the plague. Marti Gras in New Orleans has been canceled and this might be my first year in over a decade without King Cake.  Instead, I was glued to the television, watching the home grown terrorist attack the nation’s capital building, all in the name of the traitor -in- chief. Can we depose him already? 

I have one feel good story to share with you. Many readers of La Bloga know I’ve been learning ukulele for the past year. If you’ve read my COVID Christmas post, you’ll know that my neighbor gave me a guitar. I offered to teach her how to play the ukulele. Last week I gave her first lesson and she did so well. She learned three songs. Music is the gift that keeps on giving. I’m so honored to be able to teach my first music student. Teaching my neighbor ukulele over zoom is something I never imagined I would do. I never thought I would learn how to play the little instrument, let alone be good enough to teach someone else.  My neighbor is an older lady who is retired and lives alone. She says she was the first woman to own a house in her corner cul de sac. She swims in the ocean enjoys birding in the neighborhood. And she’s an early bird. If I hadn’t walked my dog early in the morning, I might not have met her. Here’s to new encounters in the new year. Somehow being isolated has introduced me to a wonderful neighbor I didn’t know. I’m looking forward to more fortuitous meetings in 2021. You?

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