On Friday, I was lucky enough to receive my first COVID vaccine shot. My dose was given at a FEMA mass vaccination site in Maryland. It was a highly efficient operation. Only 20 minutes elapsed from the moment I arrived until the moment I left - that included the 15-minutes "let's make sure you don't have an awful allergic reaction" timeout. The entire tent complex was abuzz with organized activity and you could just sense the joy under people's masks.
What has stuck with my most about the whole systematic operation is the people. During my visit, I interacted with 10 individuals - some for only a few seconds. All of them are strangers to me and all of them will remain strangers to me. But each of these people has had a profound impact on my life. They made it possible for me to receive this vaccine. Without their hard work, I would not be rubbing this sore spot on my arm.
This vaccination site is a living reminder of the amount of unnamed individuals throughout the world who have gotten us to this point. All the scientists. All the nurses, doctors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals. All the contact tracers. All the people actually putting shots in other people's arms. All the people doing what I can only imagine is a mountain of paperwork and administrative activity (someone has to design, print, and distribute all those COVID vaccination cards).
So... many... people.
Thank you. Thank you each and every one of you.
In college, I had a roommate who kept a small paperback dictionary on her bookcase. Whenever she looked up a word, she would put a dot next to it. I think about her every time I look up a word, because I thought her method was just so cool. It was visual representation of learning in action.
Here's a sample of what I looked up this week.
After watching the first six episodes of Bridgerton, I was in the mood to jump into a romance novel. I picked up this title which had been chilling on my bookcase for a few months. I’ve always loved a good Western but this one has something extra. The hero is a multiracial, formerly enslaved man who is successful in business by passing for white. Our heroine is a Black woman who longs to run her own restaurant. So, this has all the regular tropes of a good romance, but a lot more substance than you sometimes see.
Today is my first day back at work this week (use your vacation time!) which is why this post is late and the intro is short.
Here is where my attention is going at the moment.
The pandemic has caused the oddest things to bring me joy. Right now, it’s the deck construction happening out my kitchen window. The Husband and I (luckily) purchased a new condo in December - right before all of this *gesticulates wildly* popped off. After we moved in, we noticed the house across the alley behind us had a lot going on. Since February 2020 we’ve seen:
Right now, they are in the process of replacing said porch and staircase. They even moved where the staircase is located which completely changed the look of everything.
I am highly invested in this house now. It’s my own HGTV show.
Current events, twitter, and household chores comprise quite a bit of what I research. Here are the things I looked up this week.
Recently, I decided to turn my regular Sunday post, The Weekly Wrap, into a newsletter over on Substack.
I greatly enjoy putting it together each week and I want to share it more broadly. I add some new content to the newsletter so you will get new material different from the blog post if you choose to subscribe.
The Weekly Wrap shares anything that piques my curiosity. You can expect highlights from things I’ve read, watched, heard, found, did, or made. If it makes me go, “Ooo! That’s interesting!” it’s going to show up. Daily life has constant moments of learning which we can share to grow both personally and professionally.
If you're interested, head on over to my substack page and click subscribe. Like this blog, the newsletter is totally free.
As I type this, the heavens have opened up outside. The rain is pouring down in sheets turning the alley behind our building into a rather fast moving stream. I did not know it was supposed to rain today. Glad I got my lunch walk in before this happened.
Aside from being distracted by the rain, here's where my attention is going at the moment.
The ALA catalog showed up in my mailbox last week. I spent 15 minutes flipping through it and adding items to my professional TBR list
First, I have some (possibly exciting) information. I've decided to turn this weekly post into a newsletter over on Substack. I greatly enjoy putting it together each week and I want to share it more broadly. While the links and all that will be the same, I do plan to add some new content to the newsletter in case you want to subscribe. If you're interested, head on over to my substack page and click subscribe. Like this blog, the newsletter is totally free.
Second, the local Capital Weather Gang declared winter officially over in the DC area. Good. I am done with the cold and am very excited to talk lunchtime walks in the sunshine.