I’m sure I am not alone in reflecting with amazement (and some dismay) on the past three years.
As we approach Christmas, I realise that this is the fourth consecutive Christmas season where life has been profoundly affected.
In 2019, Australia endured the shocking ‘Black Summer’ of out-of-control bushfires that burnt out huge swathes of the continent’s east. For those of us living in fire areas, we faced a Christmas during which we were not sure if we’d have a home by the end of it – let alone a Christmas tree or gifts. For those not directly in the flame zone, the air was polluted by choking smoke and fumes for weeks at a time.
Just two months later, Covid-19 arrived. Lockdowns, masks, toilet paper shortages, vaccines and anti-vaxxers. Restrictions on visiting elderly in nursing homes, protests. For three years, on and off. Dreading the inevitable arrival of a new variant, just in time for Christmas get-togethers. This year makes the third Covid Christmas. In a row.
Ever optimistic, most of us hope for a better year ahead. New Year’s resolutions, plans, wishes and dreams. I’m doing the same (though I’ve learnt, over the past few years, to write in pencil on my calendar.) Perhaps that’s having a bet each way. Perhaps it’s seeing the future as a ‘glass half full.’ Perhaps it’s simply being realistic.
Anyway, I do wish you and yours a happy festive season, however you choose to spend it.
And I fervently hope for a 2023 with – well, not so many surprises. Or at least, only the happy kind.