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New beginnings.

Last week was a week for new beginnings, for sure. The girls had their first week of primary school, their teacher had her first week in a new job, I had my first week of being a properly full-time business owner, and we went to a wedding.

It was our first big gathering in a year and half, and it was wonderful. Many people from the island travelled to it, and we ate and danced and sang and celebrated our friends getting married. There were many lovely and funny bits, including the almost forgotten pleasure of drinking mimosas in a bar before twelve o’clock; the congregation being told to clap more vigorously when the couple shared their first kiss; the father of the bride’s speech making all the daughters and fathers of girls in the room cry; and an impromptu rendition of ‘The Bare Necessities’, by someone who wasn’t in the band.

I haven’t been married long enough to offer the newly weds any advice, in fact I’m not sure that any one has been: life is so unpredictable, how can any one piece of advice cover all eventualities? Everyone is just doing the best they can with what they’ve got, and there is no single road map to success. There is freedom in that though, to be able to make up your own paths and to plot your own course, and I suppose the trick is to keep holding hands while you do it.

A celebration of love and commitment seems like an appropriate way to mark the beginning of ‘after covid’, because love and commitment is what is seeing many of us through this pandemic, and what we’ll need to bring us safely out the other side. Love of our communities, our environment and ourselves, and commitment to their protection and wellbeing.

It is wonderful to be able to look ahead to Christmas and to be planning more community events, and to hear about people making plans for other weddings and other new beginnings. There is still so much to hope for in 2021, as we near the end of summer and start in on the last half of the year.

My hopes, obviously, mostly revolve around successfully convincing people to buy lots of soap, but I also hope that my girls continue to thrive in P1, that we continue to stay healthy, that we can go to many more celebrations, and that Jenny and Lorne have a long and happy life together and are still holding hands when they’re eighty.

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