We’re all pretty-much done with 2020, in every sense… and if you go by the multitude of emails I’ve gotten in the last 24 hours, “Time is running out!”… so, now what.

Next year offers a promise of “back to normal”, and it means very different things to different people. I’m not sure there’s a familiar “normal” to go back to, because so much has changed.

Even without the pandemic, there’s all the healing that’ll be necessary after the Trump presidency… but that’s a whole other discussion. On paper, that presidency ends January 20th, but the unfortunate truth is that its effects will carry on for decades.

Conversely, the pandemic will have no fixed date of “It’s over!!” but by this time next year, it largely will be, at least around here.

Restaurants, travel, getting together with friends… all of that… it’s coming back. Briefly, it’ll come back with a vengeance… a miniature roaring-20s. Then, that’ll get old (and expensive), and things will drift back to yesteryear.

But those aren’t the things that’ll really signify normalcy. For me, it’ll be the moment I realize I need a specific part from my favourite electronics shop… and I go over there, walk in, get what I need, drive home… and not give a moment’s thought to hand sanitizer, a mask or whether I’m wearing the right clothes to be waiting outside for 30 minutes, peering through the windows while people nonchalantly browse the aisles, clueless or not caring about the fact that the shop has a three-person limit. One day, it’ll be like the good old days, and when I don’t even realize it – that’s when it’s really over.

Yeah, all things considered, I’d actually rather go over there and get it myself… as opposed to click-click-click on Amazon, wait at least a day, and then see the colossal waste of plastic and cardboard and whatever other resources were needed to get this little part to me. Call it old-school… but I think we’re all pining for a little old-school. It’s what’ll be on our minds as we celebrate tonight – “Remember last year?” – yes, I certainly do. And look forward to exactly that exactly a year from now, and every year thereafter.

So, for 2020, that’s a wrap. This hackneyed phrase we throw around every year has a lot more meaning this year, and I say it with all sincerity to each an every one of you… wishing you a happy, prosperous and, above all, *healthy* – 2021.

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