May

May

May

Corona is everywhere and no one should leave their homes. If you do, you might get it, which is to say we’re all going to get it, because without herd immunity nothing can ever be normal again. Wait for the vaccine, some say. Others say that’s like waiting for a vaccine for the common cold. Some say open the restaurants, but at 25% occupancy. I say what sort of restaurant can make any money at 25% occupancy. Someone else says some revenue is better than no revenue, and I say that revenue without profit is meaningless. People are saying all sorts of things, but the pause of March turned into the pause of April which has turned into the movement of May. May cannot be stopped.

My birthday is in May. Some people celebrate their birthdays. I don’t celebrate mine. I want to, but I don’t. There’s something morose about birthdays, or at least about mine, and it rarely has me feeling particularly jovial. It’s probably because of the movement of it all, the lack of any ability to pause the years. They tried to pause 2020, and they did it for a while, but then April turned to May and this kid is riding his bike on the sidewalk right now without a mask on. How easy it was to follow instructions during the miserable spring months. May won’t abide your rules.

The lake this morning has turned the page from spring to summer. I can see it in the waves. There’s a softer, mottled look to them this morning, and that look is the look of a summer morning. Spring morning waves are crisp and shimmery, like cut diamonds. But summer waves tend to have softer edges to them, more roll than break. They’re approachable. I haven’t noticed these waves yet this year, but this morning there they were. Summer wave. Unavoidable, unmistakable. My eye grows more critical with each passing year, but it is also more certain. The lake today looks like summer, because May is a march of progression that starts with spring, abides some snow, and ends in the earliest of summers.

My pear trees blossomed last weekend. In the snow, they blossomed. My apple trees aren’t there yet, but they will be soon. This weekend, I’m betting. Who could be sad about birthdays or quarantines or safer at home measures when the apple trees are blossoming? Do we know that the safer at home orders were never engineered to keep us all safe, but rather to let us all get infected at a slower rate? And if we’ve achieved the slower infection rate, why do some pretend that there is no reason to go outside until the infection risk has passed, as if they haven’t seen these blossoms and noticed the lake turning from sharp to soft, from spring to summer, from worse to better? Who could pretend that this machine can be stopped? Who could wish it stopped?

The landscape trucks are full of mulch this morning. Mulch for some, lawn mowing for all. I hope people realize they shouldn’t apply weedkiller on their lawns until June, so the honey bees don’t all get killed. I hate that no one seems to be aware of this. Dandelions are fine in May. The sound of weed whips and dirt digging shovels follows me this morning, on my drive to Lake Geneva and back again to my office. The only sound more prevalent is the sound of hammers, those workers hammering and striving to finish their jobs before the important next Holiday. They can get away with excuses in January and February, and then the CDC gave them some excuse for March and April, but now? There isn’t an excuse left, because May won’t listen.

I suppose I’ll do some work this morning, it’s magazine season at Geneva Lakefront Realty, after all. Summer Homes For City People should be called Rental Inquiries From City People, at least that’s how it feels lately. There are calls every day from rental seeking city dwellers, and I suppose I can’t blame them. But why are these people only now realizing they should spend summer here? Do you know if the rental seekers who could afford to be buyers would just buy then they’d come back next summer and wonder why on earth it took a pandemic for them to realize that their lives are boring and their summers underperforming? I know it, and May knows it. Because May will not abide your indecision, and May won’t stop for anything, no matter the urgency of our governors’ emphatic pleas.

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