Although there has been much written about it, now we are living through this time of emergence. A little more than a year ago, we were learning how to make bread, yeast was in short supply and there was a run on garden seeds. Family renos were underway to create study spaces and work-from-home spaces.

We were in awe of our medical professionals, working night and day to hold the line. We were worried about our seniors in long-term care and other types of facilities.

We were all re-examining our relationships, with our significant others, friends, co-workers and neighbours. We were losing touch with some of those who contribute to the fabric of our lives. As for the people we lived with, we were on the edge of being sick of each other. Some relationships were falling apart.

The housing crunch started. Apartments were in demand. An influx of city-dwellers wanted the country life. Those of us living in the country and on quiet streets began to appreciate that most simple and precious thing: nature.

But according to a recent national survey, it seems that 46 per cent of Canadians want food and drink while skipping home cooking as much as possible. A survey showed that 40 per cent of us want a summer holiday experience. We want to go camping, canoeing, rafting or spend time at a cottage with friends or family–or both.
Parties. Twenty-one per cent of us want to party and about the same number of us want to “shop till you drop.”
Another 14 per cent of us are trying to book a dream vacation, five per cent want to go clubbing and four per sent are shopping luxury brands.
Finally, 17 per cent of Canadians plan on saving their money and one quarter (26%) don’t plan on doing anything differently. They are holding tight.
While we all want to put the past year behind us and return to the life we had, perhaps it is worth remembering the shift in priorities that we experienced.
We learned to value local. Seeing local businesses with “closed” signs in their front doors should have been a wake-up call for all of us. We hoped and trusted that those closures would be temporary, but small-town economies still need local support to continue. If you are among the 46 per cent that are now wanting food and drink that is not prepared at home, consider local options and what your dollars can mean to a small business. The same applies to shopping.

If you are missing family and friends, consider supporting local by ordering in or inviting everyone to pool their resources and order in from a local food establishment for your gathering.

If your home cooking has caused you to pack on a few pounds and if your exercise, yoga, or fitness class routine was disrupted, remember that those instructors are trying to re-start their businesses.

Take advantage of what is available close to you. Buy a few classes and pass them on as a gift to someone who might appreciate them.
Let’s remember the bonds that we created as we supported each other during the past year. Let’s remember the priorities we discovered. Let’s remember all of the business owners and volunteers who went out of their way to do good.

And finally, let’s always remember the signs, notes on sidewalks, and colourfully-painted windows created to send encouraging messages to anyone who happened to pass by.

In so many ways, we were there for each other.

That, in itself, is worth remembering.