Phil and I both had passports that went unused. Mine expired before being used and Phil expired before using his. That was not very nice to him. I had gotten mine in 2008 when Wheel of Fortune still gave “a lucky wheelwatcher” the trip won in that night’s Prize Puzzle. Apparently, I was not a “lucky wheelwatcher” despite being a prepared-to-travel wheelwatcher. Phil had gotten his in hopes of riding his 1989 Harley Davidson ElectraGlide from New Mexico to Canada. He had ridden it up to Washington state, but had to stop at the Canadian border because he did not then have a passport. I got my passport in 2008 and it expired in 2018. Phil got his passport in 2018 and he expired in 2019. The international travel Wheel of Fortune never seemed to land on Phil or me.
I have traveled domestically. While working in research, I traveled to cities all around the country to assist with clinical trial kick-offs. I loved getting to see my Country and would always try to see as much as possible at the different locations. While I’m always ready to rejoice in my retiree status, I remain extremely grateful for the travel opportunities I was afforded while working.
I do have an easily-renewed PBS Passport (a mere $75 annual donation) which allows me to stream the many wonderful and often exotically set programs they broadcast. I love to travel to the High Dells of Yorkshire while watching “All Creatures Great and Small.” I have seen the beauty of Corfu in Greece while watching “The Durrells in Corfu.” Like Zoom meetings, I don’t have any travel time and don’t need to be overly concerned about my appearance (with Zoom, from the shoulders down; however, in all honesty I look bad from the shoulders down no matter what I do and not much better from the shoulders up), but unlike Zoom meetings, there’s no social interaction. Being that I’m socially-awkward, it keeps me from reflecting badly on the United States, which is a good thing. My PBS Passport has allowed me to further my domestic travels also. I’ve rejoiced in, “The Black Church,” and further explored my local culture with my local PBS station’s program “Colores.” The PBS Passport has been great, because it allowed me to continue my virtual travel (local and abroad) during the pandemic. The Pandemic. THE PANDEMIC (this is a written echo – the pandemic is always ready to sneak in and reflect back into everything I do).
The pandemic… I got my first dose of the Pfizer vaccine yesterday. In three weeks, I hope to get my second dose. In my mind (oh no, we’re not going there again), this will be my pharmaceutical passport to leave my house for more than an hour or two at a time. Where will I go? How will I go? What will I do? Who will care for Cinnamon (who has with no intent at all, preserved my mental and emotional health over the past 12 months)? Thank you Pfizer, for re-introducing where, what, who and how into my life. Thank you PBS Passport for allowing me to see so much of the world’s beauty without leaving my sofa. United States Postal Service, hang in there. I may want to renew my passport one day. Life is good!