2021: Black Hole

When we rushed home from Peru at the beginning of March 2020, it was to get Jonathan’s shoulder mended, though inadvertently, we escaped getting locked down for Covid in Peru. Last year, 2020, was the year of quarantine, when we all stayed home, wore masks, washed hands, and kept away from other people, awaiting development of a vaccine.

2021 brought a Covid vaccine. The vaccine was going to fix everything and we were going to get life going again, reactivate our travel plans, and get moving. How naive we were! At least in 2020, we knew what the future held–vaccination, then normality. Now? We’ve spent all of 2021 waiting for normalcy, whatever that is, and it never arrived. We’ve ducked and weaved, vaccinated, then boosted, and here we are, back in Peru, arriving at New Years Eve without any real understanding of what the future holds.

On the beach in Peru where we are located, at the far northern tip of the Lima province, a week ago, there were no specific rules about public gatherings. On Christmas Day, the beaches of Lima (city) were mobbed with thousands of people looking for a way to celebrate and not be cooped up. The photos shocked politicians into action, and a new rumor arose every day this week about steps that would be taken to limit contagion. Final decrees were out by the morning of Dec. 30, closing all beaches in Lima province on the 31st, and on January 1, to prevent large gatherings.

Today, when I went across the street to take a walk, I was turned away by a policeman. Bright sun, brisk breeze, no people. Every medical authority interviewed by the newspaper commented that closing the beach for two days would have no impact at all on the spread of Covid. Where will people go if they cannot go to the beach? Restaurants, malls, movie theaters, and homes, mostly enclosed, indoor spaces. Restaurants are open all along the beach. I will stay in today and tomorrow.

When I first saw this giant head figure in Barcelona, I couldn’t figure out who it was. The Queen, Margaret Thatcher, some Spanish celebrity? No, it’s Lady Luck.

If you are looking for a bright side, be grateful if you have a home that has enough private space for you to breathe a bit of air, do a few stretches, sit comfortably, and prepare food easily. Not everyone is as lucky as we are.

Searching for ways to improve your luck for the new year? There are truckloads of grapes in Barranca today so that everyone can eat 12 grapes at midnight for good luck. Yellow underwear is for sale in every streetside kiosk, so that we can wear our yellow underwear tonight for good luck in the coming year (Banner photo for this post is a New Year’s stand of lucky yellow goods in Barranca). In Spain, the lottery for Lady Luck will probably be a good one today, too.

What happened to 2021? Just call it a black hole and hope for better things next year.

Good Things 2021Bad Things 2021
Vaccinations (2) Boosters (1)Isolation from friends and family
Family & Friends Zoom CallsOmicron variant of Covid
Jonathan’s cooking!Joe Manchin, betrayer of Democratic values
Beachcombing/BeachesCanada didn’t want US visitors
Joe Biden’s first year in officeNeither did Europe or anyone else
The wonder of natureUncertainty


Published by winifredcreamer

I am a retired archaeologist and I like to travel, especially to places where you can walk along the shore or watch birds. My husband Jonathan and I travel for more than half the year every year, seeing all the places that we haven't gotten to yet.

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