July 19, 2020

Coronavirus Casualty: Rose Parade Canceled for First Time Since 1945

When I wrote about the 2020 Rose Parade in January, I dared hope for a good year. I was desperate for the start of a good decade.

By the end of that month—when I first started taking news of the novel coronavirus seriously, months before anybody else seemed to—my hopes faded.

But as the year has fallen apart progressively in its first half, I think I still don't quite grasp how bad it is—or how bad it's going to get.

Because in March, I was prepared for a couple of months of closures and shutdowns. As May gave way to June, though, I'd pretty much radically accepted that the entirety of the year 2020 was canceled.

I wasn't, however, prepared for anything in the year 2021 to be canceled.

Now that next year has already gotten it first big cancelation—the Rose Parade—I'm starting to think that that two-month forfeiture of plans, recreation, traditions, and activities will be more like two years.

Or maybe even more.

I know it's just a parade.

But it's one of the few traditions I've managed to establish here in California, where I'm largely on my own on holidays.

New Year's Day—or the day or two afterwards—has been one of the few times that I've had a plan when others haven't.

Every other holiday, I'm bereft of anything to do, while everything is closed and everybody else has plans.

Without the Rose Parade marking the new year, I'm afraid that January 1, 2021 will be no different than March 11—the day the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus an official pandemic—or March 17, May 25, June 21, July 4, and so on.

They've all been just another day...

...each one following getting worse than the one before.

My hope for this year is long gone. But I'd held onto some hope for next year—until the Rose Parade got canceled, for the first time since we skipped three years (1942-3 and 1945) during World War II.

That's gone now—now that I realize we are at war.

But this coming year, we don't even get a "token parade" like they did in 1944, just months before the WWII Battle of Normandy.

I guess it's better that I know what to expect—or not to expect—sooner rather than later. There have been so many insecurities and uncertainties since March, the unsurety has been maddening.

No news may be good news, but I'd rather get the bad news now—rather than hold onto false hope.

Related Post:
Photo Essay: Ushering In a Hopeful New Decade, Rose Parade Style

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