The First Year…..

Once again it was a dark morning at the Bump house.  Billy’s mom was busily preparing what appeared to be cross between grits and oatmeal…with a grayish color.  Billy greeted her with a hearty good morning to which she replied, ‘what’s good about it?’  Billy’s good humor could not be deterred as he and Chet were in the midst of working on a science project regarding climate change, and they were about to write their final paper on their study.  Billy’s dad, Junior, came in to the kitchen wearing his motorcycle hat and leather jacket…with his concealed carry Glock 9 in his front pocket.  Junior had been relegated to day-work for some time.  He recalled the halcyon days when he had a steady job in Chicago.  He had been a mechanic for the big semi trucks.  The money had been good and the lifestyle had been solid middle class in the suburbs.  He and Neva had enjoyed their upwardly mobile habits and believed that they would last forever…after all that is what they had been told…  When the recession that ultimately turned into a depression hit…it was a shock to them and all of their friends.  

Billy and Chet met in a chat room that was called, euphemistically the ‘Zoom-Room’ and began talking about their climate change project…that they had been working on for five years.  They discussed meeting in person and decided that this would not be a prudent idea as Bill had a gas mask but Chet did not.  

President Buttigieg was on television and speaking about the need for Americans to submit to being tested daily…before they leave their house.  He noted that the restrictions that the United Kingdom had placed on our visiting their country would not be lifted if we did not comply with their health and safety requirements.  Europe had made crystal clear that Americans were not welcome in any of their countries until we met their minimum standards.  Also, South Korea and Russia and China would except Americans within their sovereign borders.

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Most of Broadway had been shuttered…although they had made the decision to reopen due to their fear of economic failure.  When patrons had died in the aisles and performers on stage…the allure of live theatre had lost its luster…  

Wall Street had attempted several reopenings and had been forced to permanently close when there was not humans left to  man the computers.  It had been remarkably resilient for years…doing relatively well while the unemployment ranks swelled to over 100 million  souls…and then there was either no one to tally the statistics…or they seemed to lack importance…as the virus raged onward!  

IMG_1655It had been a long time since the Bumps had attended a physical church service in their church building.  Many had suggested that the church reopen and that the pandemic was over and that perhaps it was little more than a political hoax…  But when 3 of the founding members of the church had passed away from the virus…the leadership thought better of attempting a reopening until…and if…the virus was brought under control…

Some were old enough to remember the political and social backlash…when the virus began.

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First the movie houses shut down.  This was a pastime that Billy enjoyed immensely.  But there was Netflix and Hulu and Amazon Prime…until there was one to operate the sites…even though the yeoman work was accomplished by computers.  Direct TV and Dish were good at home entertainment…until few had the money to pay for the services and then the companies ceased to charge for their services…and soon there was no more service…

There had been a political and religious outcry to the governmental mandate of wearing face masks…but that seems so pedestrian now…

IMG_8514The Grim Reaper had such lovely garments on and he spoke in dulcet tones that assured the skeptical that the virus was a hoax and a scam and that they would not only be in excellent health but they should be emboldened in their righteous stand against government intervention into their God given rights of free speech and free action…  None of us knew that the virus would morph into an instant killer…

IMG_7668The epidemiologist that are left…are working on 100 varieties of the original virus.  The United States…long ago…ceased to bury their dead…they burn them in humongous pyres outside of our cities…

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Statues were erected to Dr. Anthony Fauci…throughout America…

Few that are alive now… can remember how it all began…in the first year of our pandemic…2020…

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