|Rock Formations at Jack Point|
Often, I'll also spend some time thinking about the upcoming year. Although I've been known to write out specific goals organized under categories such as "Writing," "Art," Family & Social Life," "Health," and so forth, with numbered subheadings and bullet points, sometimes I simply write a general statement about my hopes for what the year might hold.
But this year as the old year waned, I found did not want to revisit 2020 and the pandemic experience. Of course, we're still in the middle of it.
And as I tried to think about 2021, not a single goal floated into my mind. Who knows what's going to happen next with respect to COVID-19? And for that matter, with American politics, systemic racism, and climate change? The experience of living through this pandemic for much of a year has served as a reminder that my personal control over the future is quite limited.
But although I might have thought I spent the entire year fretting about daily new cases of COVID or staring at screens, the photos in my camera tell a different story. I have written about the first half of 2020 here. This post covering July-December completes my account of 2020.
The summer started badly with the death of our beloved old dog, Kate.
In the summer, the daily new case rate here was down to single digits, so public health relaxed some restrictions. We were able to go on some local camping trips. We especially enjoyed a short camping trip to Malcolm Island with one of my daughters.
Our original destination was closer to home, but, once the campgrounds were allowed to open, everyone had the same idea and campsites were hard to get. Malcolm Island, near Port McNeill, is one of our favourite places and we had a lovely grassy site just across the road from the ocean. My daughter pitched her tent beside our camper.
|Bere Point Hike|
Trip to the North
After spending several days visiting our northern grandchildren and their parents, we continued on to Terrace, a small city in northern BC where we used to live.
Although we didn't see everyone we would have wished, it was so wonderful to connect with a few family and friends.
|Watson Lakes Hike|
We also revisited some familiar hikes and river walks. Unfortunately,
almost the entire time that we were in the northern part of the
province, the weather was rainy and cold.
We left Terrace and spent several days in Smithers, visiting my brothers and celebrating one brother's special day with him and his family.
Always the intrepid hikers, we did a mountain hike to Crater Lake, braving rain, wind, and sleet. This was in August!
|Crater Lake Hike|
We returned to Vancouver Island via an overnight ferry from Prince Rupert. Despite the pandemic restrictions, it was still a beautiful trip. We stayed in a nice stateroom with a porthole that framed the view.
Although usually during the summer months, BC Ferries runs a large ferry through the inland passage, because of the reduced number of travellers, we went on a smaller boat this time. For safety, we spent most of the trip either outside, or in our stateroom. The food service on the small ferry was very limited.
In the early part of the summer, I took an all-day introductory kayak course. After that, I began to look in earnest for a secondhand sea kayak. You can read about the results of my search here.
I tried out some new recipes, including these yummy tarts recommended by Donna at Retirement Reflections. I also have made the winter squash salad described in Donna's blog post -- yummy as well.
We have lavished attention on Oliver, our sole remaining pet. In this photo, he is wearing some jewellery made for him by my grandsons.
One of the unexpected joys of this pandemic has been spending more time with my two grandsons. Childcare options have been greatly curtailed because of the pandemic restrictions. I have been providing part-time childcare while my daughter has worked and gone back to school.
Fall Becomes Winter
As daily cases rose over the fall, more stringent restrictions were put in place again. Because of my child care role, I still see my grandson's family. However, we can no longer see anyone else, except outdoors with physical distancing.
At Thanksgiving, we met at Neck Point for a family hike, as we couldn't all gather for a big dinner.
We continue to explore trails and shorelines near home. I sometimes meet with friends for physically -distanced hikes and walks. For example, I met up with Deb who blogs at The Widow Badass for a hike to Jack Point recently.
|Deb and Petroglyphs|
As I look through my photos and share them with you, one thing becomes very clear. Although it has been an unusual year, and a difficult year, life went on. My life was mostly filled with joy. And that joy took the form of friends, family, and nature.