Today, I did one of my most favorite things: we visited the tulip farm!
Full disclosure, it is not the tulip part that is specifically my favorite--it is the farm part! I love a day as an agro-tourist. Give me sunflowers, pumpkin patches, apple picking, strawberry picking or even just a stroll around a farmer's market on an actual farm and I am over the moon. In fact, I just made preliminary plans to visit a lavender farm in my old stomping ground of Bucks County with my Tractor Supply Friends*!
(Although I am never living on a farm or in the country or in the midwest of anywhere. I am a town girl, through and through.)
Anyway, the best part: we were allowed to get out of our car! Last year, we had to drive through the tulip farm. And even though it was completely bizarre to pay money to drive by flowers in the car, it was all we had and is seriously one of the best days of my life. It was like being released from prison! One week later, the governor shut down the tulip farm drive-through--citing some sort of pandemic panic and the fun ended.
I think you all can agree that the fact I feel overjoyed about being allowed to exit my vehicle to walk amongst some flowers is a sign that my standards have lowered quite a bit compared to 2019. I know we are all in this place of being grateful for "the little things" and "just being happy we are allowed to (fill in the blank). And I am not about to tell everyone to get all boujee and bratty and NOT be grateful for "the little things," but you have to admit it is a really strange place we all find ourselves in as the pandemic continues and we simultaneously begin doing more.
I am grateful Lily gets to row; but I am not allowed to watch her--no spectators at any races or regattas. I am grateful my kids are back in school; but their school days are not normal by a long shot. I am grateful to be vaccinated, but we are still trapped and unable to travel--New Jersey's quarantine travel restrictions make it so if we go just about anywhere with our kids, our kids don't go to school or play sports. Mike and I are vaccinated--and according to the CDC can be unmasked outside--but we still have to sit at sports with our masks up. There is still dozens of COVID forms per week. And there are still people getting COVID and people being hospitalized.
It is a strange place we find ourselves in--we get out of cars and play sports and socialize and shop; but we are still very much in the midst of a global pandemic that is sickening people.
And while we are able to go more places, I really miss faces. I've been helping with the crew team car pool and I genuinely do not know what any of the girls on Lily's team look like--they are always masked. Tonight, I saw the face of a new friend--another crew mom--for the first time not in a Facebook picture! Honestly, the sight of unmasked faces in the wild sometimes takes me by surprise--because it feels like so long since I've seen a face I am not related to in-person!
I am glad that masks are our "work around" for being together during the pandemic, but I am freaking sick of them. I miss being able to wear my glasses, sip my coffee and drive a car pool without dealing with my mask on and off. I miss smiles and noses and chins.
So, now that we can get out of cars, I pray for the day when we can get back to seeing our smiles and even more, the day when no one else is hospitalized battling COVID-19.
*Kirsten and Heather, you are my TSF!