The pandemic has been a bit nuts. Add a new baby on top of a toddler to all the requisite adjustments required for managing the new expectations of COVID life, and you have a recipe for lack of productivity and a change to survival mode for lots of families (if you weren’t there already), ours included. I’m starting to feel like things are finally getting back to a rhythm that allows me to do more than just be with kids, sleep, eat, spend time with my partner, and try to de-stress.
My contract in Zurich ended at the beginning of 2021, baby #2 is almost two years old, and travel restrictions seem to be easing somewhat. They eased enough that we were able to travel to the US for the Christmas holiday and introduce our youngest to his grandparents and great grandmother, as well as various uncles, aunts, and cousins, who he hadn’t met in person - our oldest was also too young on his last trip to remember meeting them in person.
Singapore introduced “Vaccinated Travel Lane” (VTL) flights with select countries at the end of the summer, which meant that we wouldn’t have to quarantine on return to Singapore (imagine being quarantined in a hotel room for 2 weeks with two toddlers). The flights were pretty rough, but we were grateful for the opportunity and kind of amazed that we didn’t catch the virus - some family members we had hoped to see tested positive before coming to where we were and ended up not making the trip because of it. Though sad to have missed them, we’re grateful for their care and kindness on that front. Just before our return, all new VTL bookings were canceled due to Omicron, and they made a requirement that arrivals had to take COVID tests on a daily basis for 7 days, but this was a small price to pay for the memories our kids now have of family.
I suppose this should be some kind of “new year’s resolution” type post, but it’s more just a reminder to myself that I should try to post more regularly. Sometimes life gets in the way of plans, but I hope to write a few posts in the coming weeks about my OCR setup and my paper-writing workflow, as well as an update on linguistic mapmaking and a few other projects. Hopefully things get back into a better schedule so I have a bit more time for writing.