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Winding down the events of 2021

Here we are in the waning hours of 2021. As I have in the past, I can only sit and look at the calendar and wonder “what the heck just happened?” It seems really bizarre to believe how quickly 12 months can evaporate before your eyes. You start the year, you do a few things, and then it’s done.

One of my major concerns when the new year came in used to be putting the correct year on the dateline when writing checks. It seemed like it took several months to remember to use the correct digits. However, with the advent of online bill pay, I think I have written a total of 14 checks all year, so keeping that date-thing straight hasn’t been a major issue.

Usually, you have a pretty strong feeling about the end of the year: you either wish the year would never end, or you can’t wait to get it over with and start anew. Just 24 months ago, we stood on the eve of 2020. The year 2019 was pretty good, so the transition to 2020 was smooth, we all hoped the good times kept rolling. Then 12 months ago our attitude was much different. We had all learned about COVID and all of the hassles associated with it, and we couldn’t wait for 2021, when everything would be good again.

If we have learned anything in 2021, its that you don’t know what tomorrow is going to bring. On the COVID front we’ve had upturns, downturns, mass spreading, new variations, contradictory advice and laws pushing us in several directions at once. In March of 2020 we were told it would take about three months for this thing to run its course, now we think it may be around forever.

The political world has certainly been different. In last year’s election, we were promised a lot of things. We were warned about a lot of things. Following the election, some of the things we were promised actually happened, some of the things we were warned about happened. Are we better off than where we were a year ago? Once again, its all a matter of perspective, but stay tuned, because who knows what will happen next?

On the local news front, it has been an odd year. Who would have ever guessed we would have had such heated protests at school board meetings and library board meetings? Who would have ever guessed in this day of global warming, we would have a cold snap so severe that electrical generating stations would freeze up and consumers would pay premiums for months, just to keep warm a few days in February? From a personal standpoint, 2021 was a very mixed bag. On the plus side, my beautiful sweetheart, Leslie, said “yes”, so I have a new fiancé (and yes, she will be happy to show you the ring.)

My heart was broken in 2021 with the death of my brother, Russ. I still have a hard time getting through that one.

After almost 30 years in my old house, I now share a beautiful home with all kinds of fancy gizmos I had only dreamed of, like a dishwasher and garbage disposal. On the opposite side of that coin, I had to say goodbye to my old house, one which was once the home of my dreams.

I guess after my medical issues in 2019 and 2020, I can say 2021 was a good year because at least I didn’t have to be in the hospital.

I guess I can summarize it all by saying I don’t really think I am going to miss 2021. Maybe things will be a little easier, people a little kinder and the world a little better. At least, that’s what we can always hope.

As we close the year, I just want to say it is our pleasure to bring you the news of the area each and every week. We know and appreciate how many of you like and want what our paper brings you. We can be pretty sure about that because when there is a delivery issue, we hear from you. And we are glad you let us know, it means we are doing something right and we want the Tribune in your hands just as much as you want it.

We have had some challenges. We are growing and we are experiencing growing pains, but I promise you all we are striving daily to get better, to get more information, be responsive to our readers and be the best possible paper we can be. I can tell you there are already changes in the works we will be rolling out over the next few weeks which we hope will add to your enjoyment of our product.

For now, from the entire ownership and staff, I wish you a Happy New Year.

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