John Gianoulidis, 56, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

So, this afternoon I was pondering the last year’s events. About this time last year, I was being filmed for Kafenio to be on the Atlanta Eats show and planning the one-year anniversary/Grand Opening party for Kafenio Avondale.  ParkGrounds was plugging along as it has for the last 10 years. We had a great timeContinue reading “John Gianoulidis, 56, Atlanta, Georgia, USA”

Jeffrey N. Johnson, 58, Alexandria, VA, USA

2020 The Ides of March came raging this year,defining those essential and those notin sometimes arbitrary ways. Cursed from dugouts and half-courts,we learn to play chess;banned from classroom and choir,we meditate on piano alone. And in the absence of touch on a larger scale,as lights across the globe extinguishone-by-one, we hunker within our four walls,knowingContinue reading “Jeffrey N. Johnson, 58, Alexandria, VA, USA”

LeNora Faye, 38, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Hindsight is 2021. Can you say “20/20 vision” with a straight face after the year that was? OK, I’m done. Goodnight, everybody! March 2020, I sat on the couch, eyes glued to my television. My fellow Canadians were watching the same thing, counting the minutes with bated breath. A wood podium with a carved mapleContinue reading “LeNora Faye, 38, Calgary, Alberta, Canada”

Leslie Pietrzyk, 50s, Alexandria, VA, USA

2020: The Year that Threatens to Break the Cheery Holiday Letter! But we’re resilient, aren’t we? Dang it: we will find amusing anecdotes and bright spots amid this whipsaw of a year, as our lives careen through lockdowns, anxiety, stress, masks, an election, gallons of Purell, a hoard of canned goods (we’re not eager to actually eat),Continue reading “Leslie Pietrzyk, 50s, Alexandria, VA, USA”

Mary Kay Zuravleff, 60, Washington, DC, USA

Yesterday was Friday, not that we could tell. My husband, our 19-year-old daughter, and I have been keeping it together this spring. Also our dog, Arrow, who was born for social distancing. She’s afraid of most people and dogs, including dog sculptures, as well as cats, children, trucks, raindrops, and acorns. That sums up ourContinue reading “Mary Kay Zuravleff, 60, Washington, DC, USA”

Rick Pacukonas, 72, Vernon, Conn., USA

Seventy-two years into this bruising, bewildering and blossoming life, revelatory insights still inspire my mind to ponder and my heart to seek the poet Ferlinghetti’s “rebirth of wonder.” Perspective is the elder’s comforter. Wrinkled memories shout that I survived the boring ’50s, the wild ’60s, and all the other maudlin decades. Decades that changed theirContinue reading “Rick Pacukonas, 72, Vernon, Conn., USA”

Brian, 49, Columbus, Georgia, USA

So, I’m sitting here on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day right before the Inauguration after the insurrection. It should be a very happy time. A joyous occasion. But no. Georgia turned blue. I’m a union pipefitter out of Montgomery, Alabama, so Roll Tide Roll. Six National Championships in 12 years. Unbelievable.  I’m happy watching moronsContinue reading “Brian, 49, Columbus, Georgia, USA”

Aferdita, 50, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

2020 was an eye-opening year – learning more about the way the country works, watching individuals lie and seeing others ingest and grow with those lies without a second thought. Realizing how many policies and procedures are in place simply as a result of either barely disguised or overt racism. Seeing how delicate this countryContinue reading “Aferdita, 50, Atlanta, Georgia, USA”

Dan, 62, Boise, Idaho, USA

Thirty-five. That’s the typical answer when you ask someone to forget their chronological age and just tell me how old you feel like you are. In the same way, 2020 feels like it ended three or four years ago. While January and February were utterly forgettable, COVID sucked the fun out of pretty much everythingContinue reading “Dan, 62, Boise, Idaho, USA”