Well… What the heck do you say about 2020?
Suffice to say, it’s been a rather singular, challenging, and exhausting year. We’ve spent a lot of time shaking our heads and wondering “what’s next?” But the short version is—we’re still standing. We’ve mostly been “in the box,” isolating pretty much since mid-March and Governor Justice mostly shut West Virginia down. The state has been slowly re-emerging since. Folks are (mostly) getting better about masking up, keeping distanced, and minding large gatherings, especially with the Fall wave, which is concerning.
None of us have gotten sick. Kurt has been tested four times, twice due to possible exposures in his community work. So far all negative, wopila tanka, and no issues other than being sixty-two. (How’d that happen?) But plenty of people around us have been sick and some of you have had a hard time. Even little isolated Morgan County here in the Appalachians has had deaths, but nothing like the big cites in the Spring or in the Midwest now. Yes, it’s scary. A lot of folk here are “essentials” and have to go out.
Thankfully, Kurt already works from home. A bit after the new year, he ended up buying a new (used) heavily upgraded Mac Pro when Workstation Two’s logic board funked out. But the crashed economy has taken a toll on his clients. Some have closed their doors. Some radio silence, or holding off on projects. Work goes on, but at a significantly leaner pace. He can’t take all that personally, because there’s a lot of that happening out there. He’s still getting out to drumming, studying taiko, and doing some teaching—if masked and distanced. Still doing ceremony, and working with Four Quarters, but with a lot of care and caution. He’s even experimented with some YouTubing, live streaming, and taking some online classes.
Heather got back from a road trip to Florida, all the way to Key West, just in time for the Pandemic to hit. Her fiber arts scene is cutting back. The local knitters group met outdoors and distanced till the cold weather kicked in. The weaving guild, like so many of us, has discovered Zoom.
This year, Alice made public her journey of transitioning, a process somewhat stymied by the pandemic and the disruption of medical services. Suffice to say, it is another year of progress in an ongoing process, and she has nothing but our love and support as she continues on this journey.
Nicholas has changed jobs, now working in a more industrial craft for an outfit that fabricates loading dock shelters & enclosures. No more retail. He has started to learn some Computer Aided Design for the gig.
We’re tight, and cutting back, but we’re not starving. With no mortgage, we’ll have a roof. We keep the pantry stocked. We’ve got water, and power. We have the ’Net, and we’ve got each other. Being up on our windy hill, distancing is not hard to do. Hobbies. Reading. Housework. Media. Restoring barrister bookcases. Building taiko stands. Watching and reading the news with our jaws hanging. We hope the Republic will somehow muddle through all the crazy. But we’re still here and hanging in there.
We didn’t go to Buffalo for Thanksgiving, and not heading up to Brooklyn for Jewish Christmas. (It’s a thing) We are getting together on Zoom, and through… delivery. Finally there seems to be a distant light at the end of a long, exhausting tunnel. We’re looking forward to when we’ll be able to travel again, and the world can hug each other again.
We hope each and every one of you make it through. Stay safe.
Kurt, Heather, Alice
Berkeley Springs, West Virginia
Hit us up
161 Grove Heights Road, Berkley Springs, WV 25411
House 304 500-2142 • Kurt 845 623-0940
Heather 304 620-4838 • Alice 304 620-3703
firstname.lastname@example.org • www.fantastic-realities.com