As I stood in front of the cashier at Trader Joe’s (national chain grocery store) yesterday waiting for him to scan my groceries, he asked how my day was going. I was used to the question. It is one all of the friendly TJ cashiers ask. I told him it was fine. He then noticed the bouquet of flowers in my cart, and asked if they were for me or a gift for someone else. I told him it was a little of both. Some for my home-office desk (a ritual I started when we were only allowed to shop for essentials), and the rest for my mother. He then asked what line of work I was in. I told him. And he told me he was laid off last year, but was glad to be working again. One topic led to the next, and somehow we ended up exchanging opinions about the toll the pandemic has had on society and the eagerness to get back to ‘whatever normal was’. He asked if I was someone needing the old normal. I hesitated then told him, I appreciated all that I have learned throughout the lockdown, and wish some of that would simply stay as it is. Why can’t it? We said at the same time. Unvaccinated kids being back to school was a concern, and what 2022 will look like. Mask on no matter what: he told me and I agreed. And all other fears, I thought were only going through my mind; he spoke them out loud putting me at ease.
Because for the first time I felt I was allowed to voice my opinion without being judged, or bullied, or even criticized for thinking one way or the other.
So here are my questions to you…
How is your summer going?
During the lockdown, did you ever consider a lifestyle change?
Are you considering a trip abroad this year, or will you wait for the next?
What are you looking forward to most in the coming months?
What do you wish would remain the same from the lockdown?