For a fleeting moment, frantic as it’s been around here, 2022 felt promising. And when I can put myself into the proper frame of mind, it still does. But not even a week into it, the new year feels more or less like the past two. Ah, how fondly I look back at last year, when we all said how much better it would be than 2020- after all, things could only improve- and today, I think of it like baseball fans do when someone is partway through a no-hitter: Don’t. Say. A. Word. Suggesting 2022 will be an improvement over 2020 or 2021 only seems like a cruel temptation of fate.
Still, there’s an image that keeps coming back to me as we try to cover for injured members of the Feast crew and scramble to get carryout containers in time for Friday’s donation run to the Sister Jose Women’s Center-
it’s that rickety, flickering, grainy black-and-white footage of Orville and Wilbur Wright’s maiden voyage a hundred and eighteen years ago- the skeletal ancestor of what we’ve come to know as airplanes, bouncing and skittering in fits and starts across a mostly empty field until it just clears the outbuildings and lofts itself skyward, awkwardly but steadily gaining grace as it goes.
That’s my hope: that we’re still in the throes of a clunky and bouncing new year that will at some early point steady itself, each bounce becoming more faint and gentle, until it propels itself elegantly into better times, with all of us aboard.
In our efforts to steady the plane, we’re returning to our rituals as quickly as we can, even short-staffed: Friday marks our return to donation runs after a December too busy to handle them; and Saturday a return to our wine tastings after two weeks of Saturdays bumping into holidays.
But with any luck, all this bumping will even out and we’ll feel that lift underneath us, and be lobbed skyward into (sorry, those who’ll feel jinxed by this) a better year, and we’ll look down on the earth with the contentment one feels looking down from an ever-growing distance.
We hope you’ll join us, picking up if you’re back to feeling skittish about public places, in the dining room at a comfortable distance if you’re comfortable with a comfortable distance. See you soon, friends.