Not According to Plan 

 December 8, 2020

By  Iris Talbot

I took my fuchsia pink Beetle to the southwest Volkswagen dealership to have my summer tires replaced with winter ones. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, my car would be there for half a day. My good husband, Paul, piled my wrapped tires into my car, then took time to drive me there and back once the work was finished.

At noon the serviceman called to tell me my car was ready. He asked, “What do you want me to do with your tires? You already have winter tires on your car!”

I started to laugh “You’ve got to be kidding.” 

“Nope. You’ve been driving on winter tires all summer long.”

He probably thought this white-haired, masked lady was just the kind of woman who would drive a pink Beetle and not know the difference between summer and winter tires. In reality, it was simply another example of my life not going according to plan during this pandemic.

My Christmas traditions have not gone according to plan this year either. There have been no family gatherings, no parties, no concerts or movies in theatres, no recitals, and an extreme absence of music in my home. My life has changed.

I am used to having students, friends, and family singing in my house every day of the week. Not this year. My house has been unusually quiet.

“Where has all the music gone?”

Last week I stopped focusing on what I was missing and pulled out all my old Christmas CDs. I started streaming music from dedicated Christmas music radio stations. Paul and I started singing Christmas carols around the piano. My spirits began to rise.

Why didn’t I do this before?  I love the music of Christmas. It brings me peace.

When your life doesn’t go the way you expect, listen to your favorite Christmas music. Sing. Reach out to others. Your life may not go according to plan during this pandemic but the message of Christmas­­—love, hope and peace—does not and will not change, even in our changing world.

Iris Talbot

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