The second week of this month marked a return to the classroom at my university; the end of another summer vacation eagerly anticipated by all faculty and staff – and, of course, the students! However, the retention of masks for the first semester has left many disappointed. My thinking is that old adage: better safe than sorry! Virus’ naturally and rapidly mutate themselves and none of us are certain how effective one vaccine is against all the mutated possibilities! Which brings to mind another piece of wisdom: an ounce of prevention is worth more than a ton of cure! Quell the complaining and simply wear the mask and hope for continued good health!
The students started returning to their dormitory residences on campus at the beginning of September. Classes didn’t commence until Tuesday, September 7. After a full year of protective masking and mandated social spacing, it doesn’t take overwhelming imaginations to envision the excited and wild gatherings once the academic population began to soar!
Believe me as I readily admit that mood among the faculty and staff was equally jovial and remarkable. We were all enthused about the long awaited “return” to normalcy just like everyone else. Thankfully, the Labor Day holiday arrived later (September 6) instead of earlier in the month.
When the university semester officially started on September 7, rumors quickly spread that another coronavirus quarantine was about to be enacted. The number of variants to the vaccine against COVID-19 was growing as were infection rates and fatalities. Prevention and protection rapidly became the mantra of the university leadership and health advocates.
A mandatory convocation was held on Tuesday, September 14, – exactly one week after classes had resumed. The result is a limited social restriction on campus and the return to the masking obligation in all classrooms. Advisory group assignments were made and guideline recommendations were requested.
A subdued atmosphere now exists throughout the university. The carefree glee that welcomed all of us on September 1, is now a fond memory – as is the summer of 2021!
What lies ahead? In my professional world, thus far no one has even offered a suggestion. One day at a time!
Take care and stay bare!
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next planned entry post for here is Monday, September 27, 2021, and the proposed topic is: “Bare Slumber!”