Mielke column

FAMILY: The Year of the Tiger

In Chinese astrology 2022 is the Year of the Tiger.

I’m not exactly sure what that means but my friend assures me it is a good thing.

And so, I believe her, mostly because I want to.

I want to believe it will be a good year, this Year of the Tiger.

And also, I have other things on my mind. Well, one thing actually.

After what seems like a very long time, we are doing it.

We are going on a holiday.

We tried to go on this same holiday about three years ago. But guess what; it didn’t happen. Do you know why?

COVID, of course.

That was the year when it seemed nobody left the country and we all just gathered together separately, of course, and did our best to live through what was to be a very long pandemic.

We washed our hands, endlessly. We social distanced. We learned how to Skype and Facetime and Zoom. We ate too much and watched endless movies on Netflix. We got vaccinated, not once, but three times. Well, some of us did.

And we stayed home.

In short, we did what we could to keep the dreaded virus at bay. And, for the most part, we were successful although many suffered such sadness and loss at the hands of COVID their world will never be the same.

But as we head into 2022, changes are happening. And, for many of us, the world seems a little lighter and life seems just a little better. I am among those, although, I do have a few worries.

Why is this bathing suit so tight? How big can a carry-on be? Where did I put my passport?

Now, don’t get me wrong.

I know there is a lot of things that are wrong with the world right now and I, along with many others, I’m sure, have spent countless hours worrying about these things; things which I have absolutely no control over.

There is the lingering COVID variant. I could get it. Someone in my family could get it. Actually, several people in my family have had it, come to think of it.

And then there is the Freedom convoy, or should I say, convoys. They seem to be popping up everywhere. From the safety of my kitchen, while the birds flutter around the birdfeeder outside my kitchen window, and the sunrises in the east just like it does every morning, I watch scenes of unrest and discord unfold on my living room TV.

And I think to myself that COVID has brought with it, not only sickness that vaccines and handwashing has not completely eradicated, but unrest and discord among us, the people.

And, in reality, the unrest and anger are not dissipating as fast as COVID.

But, still, there is goodness, kindness and the simply joy of plain, old-fashioned laughter happening out there somewhere. We just have to find it.

And, for me, at least there is the anticipation of going on a holiday.

Finally. A real holiday!

Treena Mielke is a Central Alberta writer. She lives in Sylvan Lake with her family.