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  • Writer's pictureKatja

Home for Fall (at least part of it)

A long overdue update on why there’s been so much radio silence of late.

The last grand adventure trip ended sooner than expected as concerns about the surging rates of covid19 (thank you, Delta variant) brought with it a desire to be closer to family and not risk being a potential traveling vector. So, we turned our noses towards my childhood hometown, Vashon Island. What was initially intended to be a break for a few weeks has turned into more. Here’s some insight into why and what’s been happening over the last two months:

First, family comes before everything. Travel is not worth it if it causes undo stress and worry to loved ones, and with the worldwide pandemic still raging and new concerns over rising hospitalization rates growing, it was time to hit the pause button and lay low for a bit.

Second, the mandate that all government employees and healthcare workers in the state of Washington must be vaccinated by October 18th or lose their jobs caused a lot of uncertainty. While I welcomed the opportunity to be vaccinated as a first responder way back in January, many others were opposed to the mandate and it was hard to predict how many employees would receive the vaccine and how many would leave. Many agencies, including the one I work for, began contingency planning. In my case, I was surveyed about past work experiences, and advised that there was a possibility of relocating to a different position and geographical location in the state is need arose. As our agency spans the entire state, I had no way of knowing where I might be re-assigned or when, so being stationary became important.

Now that October 18th has passed and it appears that I will not be reassigned, I find myself able to breathe easier and begin dreaming about the open road again.

Third, ‘tis the season! For ski patrol, that is. Ski patrol has been a passion of mine for over a decade, and in the fall we begin our annual refreshers and training to prepare for the ski season. These trainings are often hybrid and do require in-person attendance to refresh on first aid and technical skills. Thus being available for training in Snoqualmie Pass became another factor to stay local.

Fourth, and this is nothing to be worried about I promise, a mis-diagnosed lump in my hand that we attributed to an injury or a cyst earlier in the summer now shows signs of being a small but growing tumor. Most likely a non-cancerous “Giant Cell Tumor,” it is more annoying than anything but the hand specialist recommends I have it removed sooner than later, so plans are

once again on hold as appointments are made and the procedure scheduled. Hopefully, me and the dogs can take a few local jaunts before surgery day, but we will need to be planted with my parents for a while as I’ll be on light duty and resting for at least a few weeks.

So, there you have it. Life continues to be an adventure and it’s been wonderful to catch up with friends and enjoy local outings around the area. I’m looking forward to whatever comes next!

Hanging out on Vashon.

Enjoying the beautiful Pacific Northwest forests.

Looking forward to ski season!

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