For me, it’s concerts. When pondering what will signal that life has regained some semblance of normalcy, the answer is standing in a crowd at Portland’s Crystal Ballroom watching some punk/indie artist play music. Preferably Sleater-Kinney.
The question, of course, is an existential one. Because our lives have been altered in ways obvious and opaque over the past 13 months, and there is no telling what the new normal will look like.
For many people, the coronavirus has eliminated family gatherings and trips to the grocery store. For others, following the initial shock of COVID-19’s arrival, it has meant little change – save for wearing a mask when in public. Still others have pretended that there was no reason to change anything about their lifestyles; 550,000 American deaths argue otherwise, but that is a topic for another time.
Remember how empty the roads were following the initial lockdowns? You probably don’t, because you likely were staying home. That quickly changed.
Now, as widespread vaccines are starting to finally tamp down the virus, there is hope for even broader signs of pre-pandemic normalcy. Which begs the questions: What will you do when you are fully vaccinated? What will you do when a majority of the population has been vaccinated, enough to qualify for herd immunity? How do you think others will react?