Saturday, January 1, 2022

Light At The End Of The Tunnel (MY Eng #36)

This is part of a running series about English idioms - less about language, more about life itself. Previously, we covered 'missing the woods for the trees', 'the elephant in the room', 'practising what you preach', blowing hot and cold', 'no smoke without fire', 'one swallow does not make a summer', 'apples and oranges', 'cut to the chase', 'leave no stone unturned', 'that's the way the cookie crumbles', 'can't have your cake and eat it too', 'old is gold', 'putting the cart before the horse', 'mountain out of a molehill', 'pot calling the kettle black', 'bite the bullet', 'go the extra mile', 'silence is golden', 'the devil is in the details', 'sink or swim', 'once bitten twice shy', 'don't count your chickens before they hatch', 'don't put all your eggs into one basket', 'chicken and egg', 'walking on eggshells', 'flogging a dead horse', 'better late than never', 'storm in a teacup', 'between a rock and a hard place', 'darkest before dawn', 'empty vessels make the most noise', 'birds of a feather flock together', 'separate the wheat from the chaff', 'let sleeping dogs lies' and 'open a can of worms'.

Another wretched year, another wasted chance.

The COVID pandemic has been hard to most of us. Work disrupted. Health on a knife's edge. Cut off from our loved ones. Opportunities missed. Hopes dashed.

Yet, the worst seems to be behind us. Vaccination keeps infections low. Lockdown has lifted. Borders are reopening. Life, slowly but surely, has found a way.

Of course, we're not out of the woods just yet (another idiom!). Variants keep emerging and striking back. Fear still lingers in the air.

* * *

As the curtain closes on 2021, we're left waiting and wanting on the perennial question: when can we finally see the light at the end of the tunnel?

No one knows for sure. Even our best scientists can't quite figure out the end-game just yet. It's perhaps too optimistic thinking that COVID will be conquered by 2022. But most of us are getting back on our feet, ready to adjust to the new normal, come what may.

Personally, fate has been kind to me. I'm fortunate enough not to suffer as much as others, whether physically or mentally, economically or socially. A large part of my work has gone virtual - for better and for worse. The experience is not the same as before. But I'm learning to make do with what I have, and where I am.

Life could be better, but life is still good.

* * *

I don't know exactly what 2022 will look like. Uncertainties could drag on indefinitely. The night is always darkest before drawn (covered this idiom before).

I may not be at my best in 2021. But I'm changing my ways, finding new drives, and above all, hopeful for better things to come.

The tunnel is still dark, twisting and full of terrors. But look hard enough, and there's light brightening and beckoning us forward to a new exciting world in 2022. Cheers, people!

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