Welcome Back

It’s been a year away, a year of many things. We are all finding our way forward, having to accept whatever this new pandemic reality is. Not post-pandemic because it is not over but has now been deemed “endemic” – here to stay.

Yes, I have had Covid despite all precautions and efforts. Yes, long covid is real and I am still regaining my lost energy and focus. And then there is burnout, which you only realize when the damage is done and there’s no quick fix. There has been time off, time away to restore and just breathe. There have been virtual talks and in-person talks after a long time away. Because learning is a joy and sharing what we learn even more so.

I have taken risks to move forward which also meant moving away. Cities in pandemic lockdown can become prisons, shutting us down from the inside. My new space gives me sky, trees, distant hills and constant beauty to drink in daily. And I am grateful.

2022 has been a year of returns and welcome backs, the elation tempered by caution and hesitation because of what we know and the risks we choose. We returned en masse to Hacker Summer Camp, a reunion long-awaited and carefully considered. We were fully vaxed, constantly masked, testing daily and limiting our exposure, foregoing restaurants and parties based on our risk assessment. We made dozens of air filters for our conference spaces and used monitors. It was what we could do to do what we love and it did work for us at that point in time. But Covid has taught us there are no guarantees.

What I did on my Summer Vacation

Never say never. We are living in a time of massive change, history moving us through a series of events we knew would be coming but yet caught us unprepared. Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, natural disasters of epic proportions, a global food shortage, an impending energy crisis as winter looms, a new pandemic while entire cities in China locked down tens of millions for ongoing Covid, and the looming threat of a global economic downturn. We now must question what we thought against what we are observing, and accept that we must change our approach. Old solutions aren’t working for new problems because things have changed. We have changed. There is no going back.

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