Plans for the Summer of 2021. By Linda Claire Hess Groshans

Have you ever been on an endless hold on the telephone while listening to a horrid music tape constantly punctuated by messages that tell you to continue waiting? Have you ever been in a waiting room somewhere for much longer than you anticipated?  

My life is still on hold. I have received dose 1 of the Moderna vaccine so I am on my way to being protected but my children have not received their vaccines. I would love to plan trips to see my children but that is complicated by the Covid-19 pandemic. My daughter, son-in-law and grandson live in Bavaria, Germany. I am not sure of the exact travel restrictions that Germany currently imposes on Americans. I am not sure if I would have to quarantine for 2 weeks upon arriving in their small village. Would I pose a potential risk to the people that I love the most by visiting with them after doing international travel? Still, I yearn to see them. My son is young and lives in San Francisco, CA. He is not vaccinated and that is unlikely to happen soon. 

So, I sit in this waiting room of sorts. I am so happy that I have received my vaccine, but I really need all the people I love to receive theirs too.  

My plans for this summer of 2021 are therefore restricted. When I think of ways that I might still have fun, I do think about my close infinity with the Great Lakes. Perhaps I will rent a beach house for the week on Lake Huron.  The beach walking would do me good. It might be fun to invite a friend or two to stay with me in the cottage. The activities would include picnics, beach walking, rock collecting, photography, campfires and drives along scenic by-ways. 

At home, I adore gardening. I look forward to tending my flower garden beds. I plan to retain my title as the Zinnia queen. I already have purchased the seeds (zinnias do not re-seed). I might venture off to the plant nursery to purchase a new rose bush as my way to show an affinity to my friends in Portland, OR. Portland is well known as the city of roses. In fact, from the police cars, the city buildings, and even the  storm sewers, everything in the City is marked by a rose emblem. Oh, the roses do thrive in the beautiful climate of Portland.   

I have another summer hobby that most folks would find rather archaic. I like doing laundry and hanging it outside to dry. I didn’t always have this passion. I attended a class through Osher on the history of laundry. There was something in all of the class photos and discussions that made me become extremely interested in laundry.  I also am very conscious of environmental concerns and this is one of the ways that I give myself a lower carbon footprint. 

I will take walks. I adore festivals, concerts, theater and museums but it has always been nature walks that take my fancy. I always take along my camera. I walk around all of Ann Arbor’s parks. We have so many to be very proud of. I will spend time with friends (those who have been vaccinated) and will drink a great deal of iced tea. My doctor gave me a new medicine that works perfectly but does not give me the allowance of holding any alcoholic beverage including my beloved wine. It is ok. I think it actually helped me to lose weight and I probably end up with more energy. 

I will find a way to be with nature. I will be in a beautiful place, but it is still my waiting room. I still wait for Covid-19 to be no longer with us. I wait for everyone close and in far off locations to receive their vaccines. 

So, this summer, I still wait.  

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