Here we are nine months into the pandemic, with yet another holiday stolen from us by the virus.

My family, like so many others around the country, is not really in agreement about how to have a safe celebration. For my own part, the four of us will be celebrating alone. This is particularly difficult for me because we are usually the hosts and like to do an obnoxiously elaborate meal for family and friends. My wife and I are still making a big meal, ostensibly for the four of us, but with the knowledge that the kids are unlikely to eat very much of the feast. That's ok, it will make for good leftovers.

It feels a little bit silly and perhaps selfish to be making all of this food just for ourselves. Part of what we enjoy so much is being able to share our food and our good fortune, and we really can't do that this year in any meaningful way.

I am reminded of a wedding I shot back in my past life as a wedding photographer, perhaps around 2008. The bride was Persian and her parents were unable to get a visa to come to the US for her wedding. They connected to the wedding via Skype (is Skype even a thing anymore?) It seemed so futuristic and novel at the time. Even our Zoom seder back in May seemed a bit that way. Now this is how we all are, all the time. We will have a Zoom with our extended family later today.

I am grateful that we have been able to hang onto our health during this crisis and that the vaccines will be coming before too long. I am grateful that the presidential transition is beginning (finally!) and that there might be a return to some semblance of sanity in our country in a couple of months. I am grateful for family, friends, and colleagues who have helped make this extended period of isolation bearable and occasionally even pleasant.