My annual Christmas letter

By N.A. Booko

Pittsboro, NC – That is a good thought, but I can’t ever recall writing an annual Christmas letter to the Chatham Chatlist. Let’s just call it a traditional first try. I haven’t the faintest idea where it is going.

person in black long sleeve shirt writing on black board
Photo by cottonbro

I do want to thank all the folks/readers out there who have all through this and other years, encouraged me by writing personal notes. A lot of the stuff I dish out here, sometimes leaves me wondering if I should have sent it in, let alone thinking it would get published, and I thank Gene for being so adventurous.

I know for many out there, it has been an awful year. I know I have not seen the hardships that others have faced. It is such a strange situation. Being trapped in circumstances that we have no control over and watching the bewildering things that are happening everywhere; all around us.

I have tried diligently to do everything ‘they’ say do. Wear a mask, keep a distance, wash my hands, avoid crowds. Of course, there are times I forget and mess up. Forget the rules and then am scared to death I am exposed.

Two weeks ago, I needed some critical work done inside. The repair man arrived, wearing no mask. It was a tough decision if I should say something, demand he wear a mask or just what. I chose not to make a big fuss about it. I kept my distance and when he left, I sprayed the area with disinfectant. But still, I had lingering doubts about what i had done. The two weeks infection time has now passed, but I felt like a dumb jerk for taking the chance.

I have been wearing a mask since mid February. I just happen to have some on hand for spray painting. I took a lot of flack at the time about the mask, for it appeared I was about the only person wearing one. I haven’t physically touched another human since last May. And that came about when I was talking with someone and introduced myself. I instinctively extending my hand and shook theirs. But I instantly knew I had done wrong.

I can’t understand that some do not admit that the virus is real. Numbers of the dead alone should scare the wits out of people. And the news that a vaccine is now or soon will be available is almost just as bewildering as everything else connected with the virus.

Yes, Christmas this year is different. Nothing now can change that. We must go with what we have. As individuals we have a mental power. It may be a struggle, but if we summons up that power, we will prevail. I hate all that ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ stuff. Why put that darkness in line with one’s vision? It is just as easy to envision a wonderfully green valley with flowers blooming and the birds singing instead of a dark tunnel. By the way, a happy song never hurts. As a matter of fact it lifts.

Merry Christmas to all you song singers out there. Belt out a few. Just maybe they will echo and reverberate to places and people far and wide. Off key is better than no key at all.

Me, me, ah doe, ray, me, fa so la tee doe.