Yep, Covid, in the form of the Omicron variant, has crept once more into my bloodstream, as if renewing a pandemic virus was somehow a renewal of our faith in the birth of the baby Jesus.
So, you may wonder, how the hell can somebody get Covid twice? On successive Christmases? For someone who is not only vaccinated, but TRIPLE vaccinated? Good question. Let’s consider:
One Wedding and ??? Funerals: It always helps in transmitting a pandemic virus to hold a wedding. In the Winter. In a fancy downtown Boston hotel. With upwards of 200 some people. While it was required that everyone be vaccinated, I don’t recall anyone checking our vaccine cards at the door. But Omicron could care less about your stupid card, as it’s little droplets can apparently zig zag around your defenses like Michael Jordan going to the hoop. Add loud music, which requires close talking to be heard, and the stage is set. So, yes, the Big O, in perfect Superspreader tradition, got me. And my buddy J. And my buddy D. And just about the entire wedding party. And nephews and nieces. And who knows who else. And because we have those cool OTC rapid tests, there’s no record any of the infections.
(Oh, and by the way, part 1, regardless of how many of us got sick (or worse) we did have a great time).
(Oh, and by the way, part 2, Barb did not test positive. Proving that the vaccine and booster is very (or not) effective).
The day after the massacre, Barb and I stayed over in Boston so we could attend the Sunday afternoon Boston Pops Christmas Concert. Unlike the previous evenings festivities, the Pops people were very diligent and checked our vax cards at the door, insisted we wear masks at all times (except while actively eating and drinking) and even had a guy walking up and down the aisles holding up a sign that said exactly that!!! Of course, being Boston (as opposed to, for example, Texas or Florida) we were all more than happy to comply.
Keith Lockhart was not in attendance, but his stand-in (who’s name I don’t recall, but was very good) couldn’t stop gushing about how great it was to all be back performing live again. After such a horrible holiday time last year. Which it was. But if the Big O keeps Michael Jordaning it’s way through vaccine defenses, his statement might sound a little like someone saying, “this is the best party ever,” on Saturday December 6, 1941 in Pearl Harbor (okay, that is a bit of a stretch).
Bar Crawling Towards Omicron: Alas, the same day we were Superspreading at the downtown wedding, the adorable Bridget B was participating in a fundraising, ugly Christmas Sweater Bar Crawl (????) in Southie. She FaceTimed us a couple times during the reception to show us how much fun they were having. Clearly they were having a most wonderful Christmas time. Until Tuesday. When she called us first thing in the morning. To tell us she tested positive for Covid. And that she has no food! And can’t go out and get food. So what’s a parent to do? Go get food. And water. And toilet paper. And… the list went on. Which we carted 50 miles into town (again) and dropped on her front door step.
All we could think about was that we weren’t going to be able to see her in person on Christmas Eve. Or Christmas Day. The first time in 30 years. She would be alone. In a one bedroom apartment in Southie. With no one to take care of her. And of course, we find out a couple days later that our quarantine will keep us away from baby Jack, daughter Kelsey and Evan. Merry F-Ing Christmas 😡. But then she called again. Kate (a bar-crawling crawler) tested positive. And then another. And another. And soon the Big O had infected everyone, as if he were there on the crawl with them, wearing his own ugly Covid sweater, licking their beer mugs and whispering little droplet-laden inanities directly into their faces. As of last count, 38 crawlers had seen the little red line appear on their OTC home tests, telling them to stay home for Christmas (and not the home of their childhoods).
So little B spent Xmas Eve with a bevy of bar crawlers, eating prime rib and drinking weird Christmas drinks (oh, sure, they were infected, but not that sick) so why the hell not? When the Big O gives you lemons, you gotta make Limoncello Martinis!
So, Merry Christmas Anyway: So, on Christmas Eve, Barb, in her kerchief and me in my cap, just settled down for a long winters night (watching Netflix Christmas movies- we recommend “A Boy Called Christmas.”). We’re home. Alone. For the first time ever on Christmas. But, hey! What the hell! We’ve still got each other. The Big O blew by everyone, but so far it’s been mild. And we’ll see the kids sometime after quarantine and open presents then.
It’s just another weird event living in the time of Corona.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all.