A New Way to Travel

Guest Author: Monica Richardson

Have you had your vaccine?

I think the coronavirus vaccine is seriously the thing the separates the young from the old.  Older Americans have been more likely to rush to become vaccinated, while the younger population is more hesitant and less likely to become vaccinated at all.  There’s a fear or more a distrust amongst the younger population that has me baffled! They are not in favor of the vaccine and some have flat out refused to even entertain the thought.  But vaccination or not, America is opening back up at record speed! People are gathering in numbers again, and America is beginning to look normal again. 

I was in New Orleans last weekend and Bourbon Street was just as normal as it could be.  People were gathered in record numbers, as if a pandemic didn’t exist.  As much as I felt the thrill of things being normal again, I have to admit I still felt the discomfort of being in the midst of a crowd – a crowd of mostly younger people.  Some of them with masks, but most without.

Who would’ve thought that masking would become a normal part of one’s attire?  We’re literally searching for masks to match our outfits. Some retail chains even sell shirts with masks attached, made of the same matching color and fabric.  Who would’ve thunk we’d be here – in this space in time, where masking would be a normal part of our existence? Five years ago – maybe even two years ago – I’d have called anyone a liar if they said this was normal.  But here we are.  It’s as if we’re trapped in this weird bubble in time – trying our best to escape.  And as with any crisis, we’re fighting amongst each other – about how to navigate through it, or more importantly how to navigate out of it! Because the rules regarding protection and social distancing are changing almost daily and keeping up with the CDC’s guidance is becoming more and more difficult – both unvaccinated and vaccinated people can take off their masks outdoors under certain circumstances, but vaccinated people can stay unmasked outdoors around unvaccinated people in small groups. Then there are other things to consider, like which vaccine to take, and which ones to avoid.  I imagine things will change again before it’s all over.

While some of us are still in disbelief that the vaccine is real – I mean, honestly, it doesn’t seem real – but the rest of us have accepted our new reality.  Hopefully, though, we’re on a path to ridding this awful coronavirus – not just from our country – but from our world as a whole! I mean, honestly, I’d like to get back to wearing my high heels again, and not just in my bedroom mirror.

Literally days before COVID, I went on a wine tour with a group of ladies; visited some of the best wineries in North Texas. At the time we had no idea that our lives were about to drastically change forever!

My husband and I closed on a home and moved during the pandemic. We were on pins and needles because we weren’t sure if the pandemic would prevent us from closing on time. And we didn’t know if we’d be able to move into our new home due to the stay-at-home order that our governor had just implemented a day before our scheduled closing.  After a few hiccups, we closed and moved into our new space.

Visiting my home in Kansas City was bittersweet. My father passed away a few days after Christmas and I drove home for the services. As soon as I made it into town, a snow and ice storm hit the city and I was stuck there for a few days. I’ve never been a fan of the snow, and as soon as I was able to travel, I high tailed it back to Dallas!

My very first enjoyable getaway during the pandemic was a trip to Crystal Beach, TX (just south of Galveston). It was a nice relaxing trip. Beach days are great for social distancing.

Current 2021 Book Releases

About Monica Richardson

Monica Richardson writes romance based in the Caribbean Islands. Her debut romance title, AN ISLAND AFFAIR, was released April 1, 2015. She currently has 3 books in print, all are a part of the Talbots of Harbour Island series.

Her alter-ego, Monica Garner writes erotic fiction. She is the co-author of Road Trip, a novel written in collaboration with Electa Rome Parks.

Additionally, her other alter-ego, Monica McKayhan, currently has 11 titles in print. Four are adult novels, and 7 are young adult titles. The first book in her young adult series, Indigo Summer, was the launch title for Harlequin’s imprint, Kimani TRU which made its debut in January of 2007. That same year in May, Indigo Summer snagged the #7 position on the Essence bestsellers list, another first for Kimani Press. It also appeared on the bestsellers list in the May 2007 issue of Black Issues Book Review (BIBR). Indigo Summer appeared on the American Library Association (ALA)’s list of 2008, 2009 & 2010 Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers. Monica’s young adult title, Ambitious, appeared on the ALA’s list of 2013 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults. In 2009, Monica received a film option from Karat Films for the first five books in the INDIGO SUMMER series.