Editorial – April/May/June 2021

inally, spring. And not just any spring, but a post Covid-winter spring.   I don’t think I’ve ever looked forward to its arrival so much as this year, 2021.

Covid is still with us, we’re still wearing masks (see above), washing  our hands over and over, time and again – we’re still social distancing… but it’s SPRING and everything just feels so much better and brighter.

I hope you have fared well over the winter and are as happy to see spring’s arrival as I am.  When I listened to the news this morning they announced a UV index of 6!  Proof that winter is, indeed, behind us.

Like most people, we spent the winter here, at home.  Truthfully, I did miss our annual trip to Florida.  The break from the cold and inconvenience of winter was one factor, but far more than that, I miss my family who live there.  There were no day-long “thrifting” road trips with my sister, no big hugs from my nieces and nephews who have to lean way, way down to find me, no WFT  (Warm Family Time) dinners every Sunday night after church in the morning … no wonderful, long walks at my all-time favourite park, “Chain of Lakes” where the wildlife (gators included) outnumber the park visitors and the smell of the near-by open water is always in the air.  We missed checking the osprey nesting box near the park to see if the Great Horned Owl had rented it out again to raise another brood of little ones.  Day trips to antique shops and flea markets with Peter, hunting down any-day-of-the-week yard and estate sales… we missed them.  Buckets of fresh strawberries and fresh veggies from Plant City – we missed them. Buying a bottle of wine that costs $14 here for $2.98 there… we missed that.  

(Although admittedly, our grocery prices here are much, much better than there for most things – even orange juice!)

Life,  our plans and  expectations, have changed dramatically since we said goodbye to everyone in Titusville in February 2020, just as the floodgates of Covid were starting to open.  Like most people, we weren’t too alarmed at first. I recall saying to our neighbour there that I would see her in April if the airports weren’t shut down, but not really thinking that would happen.  I had plans to fly down to get our little house ready to put on the market.  Well, that didn’t happen, of course, but we were able to sell our property thanks to family.  We have now joined the ranks of people who have stuff in a storage unit, something I never thought we’d have to use. Who knows when we’ll be able to get down and empty it out – and probably bring half of the contents  back here. It’ll be an interesting reveal when we get inside it and see what’s there.

The first complete winter  in Ontario in about 25 years  without our usual 3 – 6 week time away  did have some perks.  We (more specifically, Peter) got some renovations done to our third-floor former attic, which might now be called a “loft.”  It’s quite a transformation from a dark, dusty, mouse and fly infested junk pile above which was dirty plastic covered R-10 insulation,  to a nice, big, bright  open room, complete with new windows, proper insulation … and not a single place to “store” anything.  We’ve had to adapt our usual tastes from antique and vintage to modern for one specific reason; the enclosed stairwell to get to the loft is 24” wide. Futons, we discovered, fold nicely for places of this nature… and anything that has to be constructed is hauled up the stairs before it gets put together.  Both Peter and I have walked into the slanted ceiling so many times (yes, even me) that there are probably visible impressions in certain light.  It’s still a work in progress, but quite a metamorphosis for the top portion of this old circa 1912 house. Our view to the south is lovely and it’s going to be a peaceful area to spend time in when it’s all done.

Being home also prevented unwanted visitors in our house… like the red squirrel we caught on camera last year who was trying to get OUT of my office.  We’ve never figured out how it got in,  but apparently it (they?) enjoyed the many potted plants… and we will be forever grateful to our wonderful neighbours who cleaned up more than a few messes for us.  Being situated in a rural area on property with woods brings a lot of wildlife to us.  My favourite visitor this past winter was a Barred Owl who came and spent two full days here, never very far from a window.  My presence and photo-taking didn’t seem to disturb him at all. The only family member who was upset was our dog… the owl spent a few hours sitting on his ragged, chewed up soccer ball and that, needless to say, didn’t go over well with Chevy.  And bunnies… I have never seen so many as this year.  Cuter than cute can be, I was delighted to host them… but now I think it might be time for them to relocate.  They have eaten many of our shrubs and left piles of “fertilizer” behind, lots and lots of it. They’ll be forgiven,  of course, but I confess to being worried about my spring plants!

Re-reading what I’ve written I see evidence of Covid side-effects… that “rambling on” that seems to take place more often now when I have the opportunity to actually speak to another human being face to face – masked, of course.  I’m hoping spring will be a cure-all for that and persuade the brain cells to dig a little deeper, past the Covid discussions, past the political discussions, and back to the areas in our lives where we feel passion and enjoyment.  I fear that the lack of travelling to shops and not attending shows is taking its toll! I’m anxious to get back into the activities we enjoy, including antiquing, collecting and the hunt involved in the process.

None of us know what’s ahead in the months to come, but I’m optimistic, as are many other people in this business.  As proof of that… we have an “Events Calendar”!  It’s the first one in  a long time.  I admit it’s not very long, but isn’t it wonderful to have something to look forward to?  Please have a look and plan to attend at least one event. You can’t imagine how much the show vendors and organizers are looking forward to having you.

And, as for that little dog below, yes, the Wayback Times is for sale.  After many years in the publishing business, I would like to step back and trade deadlines for being a grandmother.  Along with Peter, I really enjoy the antiques industry and will always be involved in it, but in a different way. 

Enjoy the spring… new beginnings, new life, new hope; such a remarkable time of year. The brightness of it, the bird song, the blossoms – it’s all quite miraculous. With Easter coming soon, I hope we can all reflect on our many blessing and hold them in our hearts even throughout the tough times. 

Safe travels, keep well, and thanks for reading the WT.  

God bless.

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