This is pretty much what I’ve said to my kids, though when I say it to others, they look at me oddly. But think about it: Life can kick you in the head, and it’s pretty easy to see the bad side of everything, the doom and gloom, especially with what’s going on right now. If you let it, that doom and gloom can have you curling up for a good cry. But challenges happen, and this is just a different one. As with anything in life, you have to learn to roll with it. One of the things I learned long ago is how to laugh at the little things, the big things, and even the absurd things.
It seems as if none of our leaders know what to do. They can’t get along and work together. Even this past week, with all the announcements about variants and strains and mutations that have been allowed into the country and are still being allowed in, hearing that international flights were never stopped had me giving my head a shake. Sure, they finally canceled flights from one area, one region, a little too late, but so many other areas have flights still coming in daily. A pandemic, as pointed out by my daughter, has a passport and will travel.
We happen to live in BC, and I sometimes wonder where our leaders pull their information from. Of course they’re only human, having to deal with the backlash and protests and nonbelievers, but in all fairness, these leaders have withheld facts and information, displaying the kind of secrecy that has happened for too long, the half truths, the history of lying, giving billions to corporations to make record profits during a pandemic while continuing to hurt the little guy. I’ve said it too many times, but why would they suddenly expect people to listen?
Now we find ourselves with police enforcement, orders not to travel or leave the area. I said to my daughter, tongue in cheek, “Didn’t they say that months and months ago?” She said, “No, Mom. It was worded that way, it was recommended, but it wasn’t enforced.” Okay, I laughed over that one, because we’ve stayed home, haven’t traveled, and I apparently thought those recommendations were being enforced. Now I’m suddenly hearing about all these loopholes, like how the mandatory hotel quarantine upon coming into Canada isn’t really mandatory, because you can refuse, receive a fine that’s less than the cost of the mandatory hotel stay, and be on your way. That applies only to those flying in, as well, because the land border doesn’t have that same requirement. I guess if you do your homework, you can find a loophole in anything. Apparently, you just have to fly to a close airport, take a taxi across the border, be sure you’ve had a COVID test, and be on your way home.
Something like over 20,000 people have already found this loophole, so it surprises me that leaders believe there is trust. Remember that taxi and limo drivers are essential workers, of whom there is apparently quite a long list, and so are exempt from quarantine and can drive back and forth across the border. I’ve said before that this entire situation is becoming like a gong show. So when I heard the latest about police enforcement, about not being able to leave our hospital region, I remembered that there are always loopholes. Our leaders are just going from bad to worse, because even the police immediately put a statement out saying they won’t enforce the policy, that they want clarity over how enforcement is supposed to look. A good question!
Considering we live in a time when police overreach is in the spotlight, and demands have been made to defund the police and to take a serious look and restructure the entire system, these policies are especially ironic. Sure, there are some good cops out there, but when they are told to follow an order, when all the overreach and bad policing comes down from the top, the leaders, these cops have a choice to follow a system that has done some pretty bad things or to quit. Then there are the bad cops—and there are too many who have a badge and power and have abused their authority. With this latest announcement giving permission for overreach, what kind of accountability will there be? Remember they often target the most vulnerable, with little to no resources to defend themselves, never the reporters or TV executives who can put their stories on the front page or the news and give them the needed spin.
There isn’t a lot to laugh about, and if you have a loved one you haven’t been able to see, have been separated from, you’re likely looking to blame someone. That’s all we’re hearing from leaders, too—the blame game. Since the beginning of the pandemic, it’s been no wonder that people are asking some pretty hard questions and making demands, calling for the truth from our leaders now, finally. There is anger, too. My mother is eighty, and she wants to see her sister in a care home, but she can’t. She’s not allowed. She’s been vaccinated, and so has her sister, yet here we still are.
Then there are our kids. We’re coming to the end of the year, my daughter’s high school graduation. She put off looking for a gown, the dress girls dream of, because from February to June was like a lifetime in COVID years. She said she wanted to wait because of all the uncertainty as to whether there would even be a graduation. Now here we are, a little more than a month away, and there are questions about where we can get a dress. Just going out shopping doesn’t happen anymore, considering we have to ask what’s even open. So here we are, scratching our heads, having another laugh, because it’s looking like we’ll go with online shopping from Amazon. Let’s hope it fits!
It can make you cry if you let it, but instead we’ve continued to have a good laugh as we talk about how graduation is going to look. Even the school has no idea. It could resemble something like my son’s last year, which was a ten-minute, no-frills, get-in and get-out ceremony, no extended family or friends allowed, social distanced, with a few kids at a time, some pathetic claps from the few allowed in the gymnasium, and a quick flash of a photo outside before leaving. Or it could be done over Zoom! We’ve seriously had a good laugh over that one, considering you could find a gorgeous dress for that special day behind a computer screen, or you could just show up in pajamas.
What we’re looking at is maybe having dinner out! Because of the gong show going on out there, we have no idea what the end of June will look like, because right now, with all the closures, it’s hard to keep on top of all the rules. They change their minds often. Indoor dining is now banned, and some restaurants have closed their doors for good. My daughter could be on some outdoor patio in her fabulous online discount dress. Yes, we are laughing about that, too. As of right now, it’ll be just us, if restaurants are still in business, and maybe one or two of the lifelong friends she’s graduating with, or maybe the family friends we haven’t been able to see. We don’t know for sure at this point, because this is a week-by-week situation. The rules change, it seems, on that basis.
Today, schools are still open, my daughter still has a job, and we’re still finding ways to laugh even with all the absurdity going on.
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