Thursday, June 18th, 2020

While we all begin to slowly crawl back to normal—whatever that means these days—I’m thinking a lot about the small joys, those little revelations that sustained me during the long times of semi-isolation. The small things and moments, that to be honest, I hope never return me back to the relative normal of pre-pandemic days.

There were countless hard moments, a million frustrations and troubled sleep—rereading a line from Hemingway’s “A Moveable Feast” sums it up pretty well for me. “When the cold rains kept on and killed the spring, it was as though a young person had died for no reason.” Then I think of the life affirming moments, the ones we hardly noticed except to notice that I’m letting them slip by.

I thank God for those first unhurried warm days, the long dinner preps that began around four o’clock and would fill the apartment with seasonal smells of new potatoes, the first peas and lettuces, we’d wait for chicken to marinate in buttermilk with more wine to come.

I’m so thankful for nature, God’s tapestry all around us, never realizing that by living so near the Hackensack River (a river I’ve grown to love) that I’m in the middle of a whole ecosystem.  Catching glimpses of passing hawks, deer, raccoons and skunks. There were the walks when we never realized how loud the myriad of birds were and the morning when walking to the car two beautiful red foxes crossed my path, noticed me and kept trotting along, one with a poor squirrel in its mouth. I never realized how wild our suburban life could be.

My wife and two friends got on a Zoom call about twice a week to watch through the American Film Institute’s “best” 100 American films of all times. Sunset Boulevard is delightful, Unforgiven is still terrifying and Network is not as good as you remember it.

Yes, the golf course after the turn when the breeze kicks up and light begins to fall was great too, but the moments I hope never to forget would be the evenings, exhausted by work at the Office of Concern—my face breaking out from wearing a mask—I’d collapse in bed, listening to my wife laugh at some stupid Netflix show and thank God for allowing me to be so needed.

This small litany of things I hope never ends, they were gifts, no matter how small, that arrived at my door with all the pain and confusion and for those, I’ll be forever grateful.

I’ll be seeing you,



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