Cicada Spring

Sunday Letter | #339

Silhouetted elm leaves at dusk; clear-skied crescent moon in the distance.
North La Salle, Detroit, MI

It was Julia’s birthday on Thursday; we went out for our first real dine-in meal since the start of pandemic. The next morning we got a delivery of mulch for our garden; I told the landscaper about our plans to replace the chain link fence with wood, and he said to wait a year if possible for lumber prices to come down. After lunch I went to my barber, V., for my first not-at-home cut since the before times. We talked about getting our bikes out and riding around; V. mentioned a new conveyor-belt sushi place he went to with a group of friends – his own first meal out. In the middle of the cut, a random guy hanging out at the barbershop came over shilling dogecoin.

A snapshot of May 2021, I suppose. It makes me wonder: What has changed, now that I’m coming out the other end? What have I learned? What will I start to do differently, after having gone through a pandemic? Questions for which I don’t yet have answers, and might not for months – or maybe years.

Otherwise, it’s been steady-ish work on the draft. I’ve had a couple of side obligations, and even on busier days I’m trying to write every morning for at least 30 minutes — that way I’m never too far away from the story. I also did a pair of virtual school visits, including one with a group of students in Shanghai. Although I plan to continue doing video chats, I look forward to being back in classrooms, in person, and am starting to book visits for the fall. If you’re an educator (or know one) who’s interested in setting up a visit, let me know.

And I can’t possibly end a letter titled “Cicada Spring” without linking you to this video.