HOPE: is a four-letter word

Last Update: December 01, 2021

As I sit in my home office, I look out my east window. I can see brilliant blue skies and puffy white clouds and in the foreground, the palm fronds of my neighbour's towering coconut tree swaying with the wind.

Through my open windows, a cool wind whistles and howls like a yawning giant, and my drapes dance as the breeze softly pushes against them.

After many hours of torrential rain, the skies have cleared and the earth has begun to dry as the heat of the day beats down and the temperature makes it usual upward climb.

Glancing at the date on the bottom of my laptop screen for the hundredth time today, I am in disbelief that the year has gone by and it's 1 December!

The Yuletide season is upon us and as is customary in the Caribbean,we have begun the usual Christmas season traditions - homes are getting their annual paint job, windows and gates repaired and primed and the loud noise of lawn mowers and weed wackers can be heard as landscapers trim and clip hedges and plants.

Though it might seem ordinary, the days are far from it. In spite of efforts to appear 'normal' and to get back to doing things we've always done at this time of year - we are far from where we used to be pre-Covid.

As the country relaxed its restrictions and businesses opened up - bars and restaurants (safe zone authorisation required), the cases climbed and so have the fatalities. In a country of 1.4 million people, eventually everybody knows somebody who has been infected or affected by the scourge of the Corona virus.

Health restrictions continue and mask wearing is mandatory. So, while Christmas traditions are making every effort to be the salve that soothes the many wounds that have been made over the last 21 months, underneath it all, the wounds run deep.

Nonetheless, for many of us on our small island, we look towards this season as one of hope - where for brief periods we can savour the essence of family (even if it is virtual), the fragrance of a freshly baked Christmas ham and bread, hot out the oven, the aroma of spices boiling on the stove to add to our traditional Christmas beverages, getting our meats and seasonings ready for the annual kitchen drama of cooking our special dishes reserved for Christmas time.

Though the season is fleeting, it brings with it a brief respite from the rigours of the health crisis - even for a moment. Like hungry children, we relish every morsel of Christmas joy. Holding on to the reason for the season and wishing it would last just a little bit longer.

H.O.P.E.

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Jessiefido Premium Plus
Wow my friend! You are becoming a fantastic writer!

I felt every emotion expressed here! We must always have HOPE!

With things as they are here right now, I unfortunately have little hope that my trip back home to visit the folks for Christmas will go ahead.

But thankfully everyone is in good health, so I will have to plan again for the next year!

Take care my dear friend and I HOPE all is well for you and your family!:-)
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Brongsugah Premium
Thank you so much Nick! I truly appreciate your lovely compliment and for always tuning in to my writing. Great morale booster! I'm sorry to hear that your plans for a visit back home won't happen, but there's always HOPE for next year! Lots to give thanks for my friend and as the saying goes, as long as there's life, there's HOPE! Best wishes to you and yours!

Maria
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Jessiefido Premium Plus
Always a pleasure Maria!

Let's hope that next year will be a much better one!
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Brongsugah Premium
All we can do is HOPE and pray that it is a better year my friend. Best wishes for the week ahead.

Maria
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Jessiefido Premium Plus
Much appreciated my dear friend!

Have a great one yourself!:-)
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ElizabethRo2 Premium
Beautiful post...Maria, you brought me back in time when I was back in my hometown on the sunny island of Jamaica.

Doing the painting, whitewashing the fences or stone wall, changing the curtains, to make everything new again, ah! such great memories. I could go on, but no you share it for me.

Thank you, and stay blessed.

Elizabeth
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Brongsugah Premium
Thank you Elizabeth! There's nothing like a Caribbean Christmas for me - never mind I'm a bit of a scrooge but I welcome every little morsel of this season this time around because we're surrounded by so much that can defeat you. So we continue to HOPE and have faith that the world will soon rise from the ashes and shine like never before. Blessings to you and yours.

Maria
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emarla Premium
I like your “savoring the essence of family”. That’s exactly what I intend to do. Thank you for a beautiful post.
Erlene
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Brongsugah Premium
Thank you for reading and commenting Erline. Truly appreciate your compliment. Best wishes.

Maria
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Newme202 Premium
That's what taking me through this Christmas, my friend
Hope
This Christmas is a double hard for me
I am really trying my hardest to be okay and cope through it all

Next week will be one year this my beloved mom was taken from us

That mixed with the after effects of the pandemic is a bitter pill to be swallowing

Hope
I'm holding on tightly and trying to be busy to keep myself from falling apart

Hope is the only thing I have.
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emarla Premium
Be extra good to yourself Simone! This will be my first year without my mom too. I know it will be hard but necessary as part of the grieving process.
Take good care!
Erlene
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Newme202 Premium
Thank you so much for your kind words, Erlene
I really appreciate it
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Richie7 Premium
Your Mom's heart and soul will always be with you know that and hang on to that. Your love for her is why you took the time to write this post. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and will enjoy great memories.
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Newme202 Premium
I do appreciate your kind words of comfort
Thank you
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Brongsugah Premium
My dearest friend Simone, I feel you and know the challenges that we face as humans. Hope is pretty much what gets us through and our belief in God and gratitude for each new day - another chance to make it better, to live, to love, to laugh and be good to each other. Take courage and strength my friend. You are not alone!

Maria
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Newme202 Premium
Thank you, Maria
Still struggling but I will try and push through
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Brongsugah Premium
I know that you will get through to the other side of this challenge. May your mountains be reduced. May your valleys be filled. May your way be made straight. Keep on keeping on!

Maria
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Newme202 Premium
I do hope so, Maria
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Zoopie Premium
Well said, hope you have a great Christmas and festive season Maria.
Stephen
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Brongsugah Premium
Thanks a lot Stephen. Many happy returns to your and your family.

Maria
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