“As bad as it is, it’s better than last year!” That’s what we seem to be saying to each other in our neighbourhood with the help of lots of bright holiday lights, Santas, snowmen, candy canes and wreaths. Even some of our neighbours who have never done it before, have decorated their yards or balconies this year. Perhaps it’s the welcome sign that we’re going to do this thing now. Get all vaccinated and masked and defeat or cope with Covid and focus on the Mother of all Crises: Global Warming.

We must end our century long love affair gone wrong with the Internal Combustion Engine and stop burning fossil fuels. Do it for the children – and the children’s children. We can stop the madness and we can reverse, at least to some degree, the effects of saturating our air, water, and earth with greenhouse gas emissions.

The artist, Rod Prouse, who lives on Georgian Bay, Lake Huron, Ontario sent us a holiday card several years ago before the pandemic. A painting of Wahnekewaning (Deanlea) Beach, it reminds one of an ancient Chinese painting with humans, very tiny against the immense power and force of Nature – ominous clouds above the majestic Laurentian Shield. The happy wee humans frolic in the waves and loll on the shore. “Little do they know,” looms in one’s mind looking at the print now.

We have much to grieve. Much loss. Trauma and devastation. And yet, we must celebrate the joy of what remains. Our love for each other. Our determination to stop the destruction and to take whatever risks we must to give back life and vitality to our precious land, our magnificent planet. We shall persevere and we shall prevail. For the love of it all.