- posted September 7, 2020
On July 11 I received an important phone call, a meaningful call, and a wake-up call. No, it was not three different calls, it was one call from one person. Don Knight called to check in on Carol and me. We had a wonderful conversation about a few things, but one thing that Don said really got me to think about how this year has gone and how it affected me. Don told me that he did not realize how much he misses touring and all the people on tours. I don’t want to be an amateur psychologist here, but I think I have been in a bit of a frump this year because we have not been on tours. That statement doesn’t say it all. I am in a frump because I have not been around my friends on tours. There is a void in my life, something missing. Our home routine has not changed that much. We have found a few other things to fill our time. However, one identifiable change is, we are not seeing our friends on tours.
We are familiar with social distancing protocols and wearing masks. I see it a little differently. The protocol is “physical distancing”. Being six feet apart does not keep us from being social. We can talk through our masks. It is more difficult to hear and understand speech when we talk through our masks, but we do it every day. Communication is better when we can see each other and engage in nonverbal communication, as well.
Don’s call woke me up to understanding how this virus has reduced the amount of communication within our circle of VMCCA friends. Don is over 900 miles away from me, that is physical distance, but it is not social distance. Technology can bridge that distance in less than a second. We are all limited to seeing and meeting with our Chapter friends. Some of our Chapters have developed alternative ways to tour and see friends. Northern Colorado Chapter has planned “driving” tours where we drive through the area without stopping to gather. No coffee stops or restaurant lunches. Those drives are enjoyable and helpful. I read in region and chapter newsletters that you are doing similar things to keep your members involved and together. Thank you for planning those events. Without knowing it, we just might be helping people stay healthy and keeping them from being in a frump and filling their void. It certainly works for me.
My concern is that when we don’t do something on a routine basis, we tend to lose interest in it. Staying active and in contact with your friends is important. We used a tag line a year or so ago, “Touring with the VMCCA, where every road leads to friendships”. We came across a quote on our way home from the Muscle Car Tour, “Difficult Roads often lead to beautiful destinations”. We are experiencing a relatively difficult road at this time. We don’t know where it will lead us. Let’s not let it lead us into a frump or allow us to lose interest. The beautiful destinations in the VMCCA are not necessarily the tour. They are the friendships we develop along the way. Stay in social contact with each other even though we are physically distanced.
You have likely figured out that music is part of how I relate to my surroundings. Randy Newman wrote the song “You’ve got a friend in me” The three verses and the bridge all have special meaning. This is part of verse two. “You’ve got troubles, and I’ve got ‘em, too. There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for you. We stick together and we see it through, ‘cause you’ve got a friend in me.” I find myself singing part of that and saying it to my friends frequently.
To all of The VMCCA members, you’ve got a friend in me!