Living through each day of the pandemic gradually eroded the certainties of what we once considered “normal.” Every morning introduced a new palette of worries, fears, stresses, and hope onto life’s canvas. Often, we yearned to throw open the door and step into the world as we used to. This desire to return to the familiar felt like reaching for the stars. Traces of our old lives lingered in our thoughts, prompting us to imagine what our “new normal” might be.
Just before Christmas, I had to vacate my apartment for asbestos removal, leading me to stay in one of the few hotels open on the island of Oahu. Upon entering the hotel room, my attention was immediately captured by the view below. Was this a dream? Observing people freely moving along the beach, practicing some social distancing, while others playfully interacted in the water, felt surreal. The scene below momentarily erased all traces of the harsh realities of the pandemic. Could this be a glimpse, or perhaps a dream, of the future as humanity emerges from the pandemic? Daydreaming captures the internal emotional conflict as humanity emerged from a global crisis.