What was billed as Hot Vax Summer was more about too hot and not enough vax. Forest fires in the Pacific Northwest caused smoke pollution across the country. The California Dixie Fire is still burning and the Caldor is causing evacuations in South Lake Tahoe. Floods were devastating from Germany to Tennessee, not to mention Hurricane Ida making landfall on the anniversary of Katrina in Louisiana and drenching the Northeast. The Olympics brought us unexpected joy while the exit from Afghanistan was marred by loss of life.
But after the lost summer of 2020, if our collective MPRM team is any indication, we craved normality even with the Delta variant putting a crimp in our plans. Masked, vaxxed and tested, we went on vacations, reunited with family members we hadn’t seen in over a year, listened to music and podcasts, watched movies, albeit mostly on streaming services, and went to the ballpark. And yes, we continued to work from home.
One intrepid traveler made it to Hawaii, North Carolina and Sweden this summer. Another reunited with family in Michigan she hadn’t seen for almost two years. It was a long time between visits, particularly for her son and his grandparents. Yet another crossed the Canadian border as soon as it was open to be reunited with his partner. One of us celebrated a 10th wedding anniversary in Hawaii while another attended a Celebration of Life for a brother-in-law in Northern California. Most did not travel far — there were trips to San Francisco, San Diego, Ventura, Mendocino and Phoenix — and to the mountains in both Northern and Southern California to escape the city. There were also a few visits to local theme parks. Our company Dodger fan returned to Chavez Ravine and the son of one of our senior staff is now a Dodger fan in the making, having gone to his first two baseball games. One of our team members is thrilled to have resumed her Ultimate Frisbee pick up game. Those who didn’t travel were very social, one of our colleagues saying that she almost needed a weekend to recover from her weekends because she tried to pack so much in to make up for lost time. Work related journeys made a comeback as well, with trips to support clients at the Tribeca and Telluride film festivals.
Labor Day typically marks the traditional end of the summer, and has been seen as a return to the office post pandemic. That return has been postponed by many companies, including ours, even if a few people are venturing in on an occasional basis. We will still have at least one more month of summer temperatures. The biggest change? No more summer hours on Friday.