To state, much has changed in our world since I last wrote would be an understatement. A war has sadly begun. My heart goes out to the people of Ukraine. I pray it ends as soon as possible. We’ve all been through so much these past two years. I cannot begin to fathom what the lives of those in Ukraine, must really be like, caught in that awful reality. One thing I believe we can all agree upon, President Zelensky of Ukraine, is an amazing leader and an inspiration to his people and our world.
On another note, life in Austin is almost back to normal, from this pandemic reality. We are at a Stage 2 risk level currently, after being at Stage 5 just a couple of months ago. What an amazing turn of events, in a very short time.
I unfortunately, caught Covid in early January. I am fully vaccinated, boosted and still mask up when going in an indoor retail environment of any kind. The Omicron variant is extremely transmissible obviously. The good news is the vaccines do work, since my symptoms were mild. Lots of sneezing mostly and a runny nose was all I experienced.
Texas has a serious pollen allergy issue. I thought I’d been hit by a Cedar pollen attack initially. I tested myself at home with a rapid test two weeks in a row, since Cedar pollen and Covid symptoms are very similar. I tested negative for the two weeks at home but decided to do a PCR test, since many of my friends in Austin are at higher risk due to our ages.
Damn if I didn’t test positive.
I isolated for 10 days, not 5 days, just being extra cautious and tested negative on my second PCR test. The good news is that my antibody test I did shortly thereafter, were through the roof! Hopefully, we are finally past the worst of this pandemic. My fingers are crossed.
Austin is back to it’s “Live Music Capital of the World” self these days, especially with SXSW kicking off this weekend. Protocols are in place to keep the artists, speakers and guests attending safe and healthy. In March of 2020, when Mayor Steve Adler of Austin, made the difficult decision to cancel SXSW, he made national headlines. I am extremely grateful for his decision back then. Now this amazing city is safely moving forward with all the right measures in place, for a successful experience for the businesses, vendors, and artists in attendance.
I volunteered for SXSW, my first year here in Austin in 2019. The number of opportunities to attend everything from movie premiers, keynote speakers and not to mention music performances of every kind of genre is overwhelming. Even with a badge that gave me access to anything I wanted to attend, I gravitated towards the keynote speaker part of the itinerary.
Here is a link to what is going on in 2022: www.sxsw.com
This year for SXSW, I’m going “local” via attending all the free events available. Believe me, there is so much to consider and it’s all good!! The “Big Buzz” for SXSW this year I believe, will be Dolly Parton and James Patterson’s book release tied to an NFT. Let’s see if my hunch is right. There is so much to digest from so many industries, my guess may be insignificant with so much being planned over the next 10 days.
In closing for this post, I just want to say it is great connecting with you again. I hope that wherever you are on the planet, life is moving forward for you as well. That you and those you love and care about are staying safe and healthy. The next time I reach out to you, my hope is that our planet is at peace, and we are marching onward to our highest and best good for all sentient beings.
Much Aloha Always