Well, the summer of 2020 ends in about in hour officially. It's definitely the most unique summer of my life. Still not the worst (there were a couple contenders in the mid 00s).
For the first time in my adult life, I did not attend a concert or sporting event.
I probably got more use out of my grill this summer than any other time in my life. In fact, I've grilled every weekend for the last six months, except when we were out of town.
We did make it to our beach town, Ocean City, MD three times, and saw the smallest crowds I've ever seen down there for July and August. So, we did still get to enjoy most of our summer traditions, even if it meant wearing masks.
Jimmy Buffett released his Life on the Flip Side album on May 29, and it came at a perfect time. That album, especially songs Slow Lane, Slack Tide, Live Like It's Your Last Day, and Oceans of Time, was my soundtrack to this weird summer.
All in all, we made the best of it. Plenty of time outside, trying to have as much fun fun fun in the sun as possible.
Hopefully, as Mike Love sang back in the Spring, this too shall pass, and the summer of 2021 will be more normal.
It was a very weird summer here, as well. And if you'd have said to me in May that the pandemic wouldn't be the strangest part of summer, I'd have thought you were crazy. But of course in Minneapolis, we had the Floyd killing and subsequent protests and riots. City government has been a mess since (as if it weren't before, the cynic in me says).
But working from home since March meant a lot of time to take morning and midday walks, which I've found just delightful: exercise, fresh air, and good for the mind/soul. It might be that, that's going to really make winter rough. I'll still be working from home, but presumably more homebound. It's not so easy to just pop out for quick walks when it's -5 degrees, two feet of snow, and a quarter of the sidewalks not shoveled. You need to bundle up first, and then you can't (and don't want to) be out for long once you're there. So I worry I'll become more isolated in winter, more stationary. Stagnant. There's a rowing machine in the basement, but I'd take outdoor exercise every time, weather permitting.
The patio has gotten a lot of use, not just for me reading after work and on weekends, but sometimes working there. It has also been my primary--darn near only--place for socializing. I have had a few people over and entertained out there, but I haven't been to a restaurant, bar, or non-family member's home since March. And like KDS, I haven't been to a single show. (Hell, there has hardly been a single show to go to...)
Hopefully things will open up more next spring, and summer 2021 will be a great one.
I will say that I was kind of spoiled in the early part of the summer when we were house bound. In recent weeks, I've found myself annoyed when we have social obligations (moreso than usual), even though that means a sense of normalcy.
Hopefully things will open up more next spring, and summer 2021 will be a great one.
Another summer gone, so I'll add to the thread of the same name. Per the above, things did open up more "next" (now this past) spring and early summer ... only to take another step back by mid or late summer, with the emergence of the delta variant and the significant slowdown in vaccine-takers.
This summer was in most ways better than last. Obviously the lack of rioting was a substantial improvement over last year! But we did have a tremendously violent summer in Minneapolis, with the city on pace for a record-high number of murders. Still, it's not as if the city is generally unsafe for most people, though there are exceptions.
The weather was rough. We had very hot, very dry weather for the first few months of the season, hurting our farmland, our lawns, and our gardens. Then we had cool and wet stretches later in the season, including one of the wettest Augusts on record (I believe mostly from the final couple weeks of that month).
In some ways, though, what might be most unusual about summer 2021 is how similar it was to summer 2020, thanks to the pandemic. We've gone a year and a half now with it, and you can't help but wonder how much longer we're going to have to go.
Anyway, autumn falls officially a little later today. I welcome it. I'll still spend time outside the next couple of months (hopefully, weather permitting), and when it's time to come in, well, I'll come in.
Great minds. I was about to either bump this thread or start a new one.
There are more of a sense of normalcy this summer. The summer didn't begin with "stay at home" orders like last summer. And, by early July, for a brief moment, it was starting to look like we might be at the end of the pandemic. But.......that was not the case. On the plus side, other than masks coming back in some places (I don't hate wearing them, but it was really nice to go a month or so without using one), there haven't been nearly as many restrictions or cancellations, but of course, that could all change with the coming of colder air, and the cold / flu season. It's a shame, I was really hoping we'd be all but rid of this fuckin' thing by now.
Speaking of plagues, we had our every 17 year cicada uprising in early summer. So, that was fun. This was also the second straight summer I didn't attend a concert or a baseball game, but at least I had the option this year.
The weather was nice, it was hot, but we surprisingly never got drought like conditions that often happen in hotter summers. We made it to Ocean City, Maryland three times. And as much as I liked the smaller crowds last summer, this summer's bigger crowds just felt more "right."
My adoration for Jimmy Buffett's 2020 album Life on the Flip Side remained, so I now feel like it's a very worthy addition to the catalog, and my love for it last summer wasn't solely based on the novelty of it.
Iron Maiden was the surprise release of summer 2021. This was surprising because they're still in the midst of their Legacy of the Beast tour, with dates on the books for 2022, so I was expecting to not receive any new music until that tour concluded. In mid July, they released a new song, and announced a new album - Senjutsu. I've spent a lot of time with it since it's September 3 release. Definitely a grower.
So, while I'm said to bid farewell to long days, and warm afternoons / evenings outside, being able to grill with shorts and flip flops while listening to Buffett and my other summer songs, I'm ready to move onto Fall (I think).
jk: That's good news, Sheriff. And good news from you too, Cap'n.
Sept 21, 2021 10:12:14 GMT
carllove: Sheriff and Kapitan, totally understand! Just let us know when there is an update. I am enjoying both! I really appreciate both of your efforts!
Sept 21, 2021 13:44:37 GMT
carllove: Looks like Sheriff has already added to the Sparks history! Yay!
Sept 21, 2021 13:46:01 GMT
Kapitan: Shamed, I began a new Prince thread post. But work rudely interrupted by wanting me to, you know, work. So it'll have to wait.
Sept 21, 2021 19:31:50 GMT
jk: Ooohh, we need a new "year" -- preferably from someone who hasn't chosen one yet...
Sept 22, 2021 9:59:24 GMT
Kapitan: Yes, let's keep it going. If you're not sure which years we've covered, check the first post of the thread: I've edited it to list each year we've touched upon.
Sept 22, 2021 13:10:08 GMT
jk: If no one jumps in soon, I'll go for 1997, which is 13 years back from 2010. Fact is, we haven't had a '90s year yet.
Sept 22, 2021 13:46:32 GMT
Kapitan: No, but we do have a whole '90s thread that covered a lot of that territory. (In fact, that's what inspired the idea, to some extent)
Sept 22, 2021 13:52:28 GMT
Kapitan: Not that I'm opposed to a '90s year, mind you
Sept 22, 2021 13:52:58 GMT
jk: I see where you're coming from, Cap'n. I even did a double-take when looking through 1997 albums and songs (these look familiar!). My next suggestion is that we go back 13 years from 1972 to 1959.
Sept 22, 2021 17:04:34 GMT
jk: OK, it's one of the "doldrum years" but it was crammed full of goodies that even register with folks who weren't born for another 20 years. Of course, if anyone has a better idea, I'm all for it.
Sept 22, 2021 17:05:59 GMT
Kapitan: That would make sense; we also haven't really touched the early to mid 80s, which I'm sure people (mostly) recall. And of course EVERY year in the '60s seems loaded...
Sept 22, 2021 17:06:53 GMT
jk: Yes, the early-ish '80s also came to mind. But let's see who else joins in...
Sept 22, 2021 17:08:04 GMT
Kapitan: So far we've had me, jk, kds, and carllove choosing years. Would love to expand that circle.
Sept 22, 2021 17:13:20 GMT
Kapitan: Which, I guess with four of us so far, is more a square.
Sept 22, 2021 17:13:38 GMT
jk: Ha, yes. Sheriff? B.E.? sockit? The Kid?... We'll see.
Sept 22, 2021 17:16:41 GMT