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Thursday, July 23, 2020

The Summer of Our Discontent

In its 147 year history here at Silver Lake, a very large part of the Institute's summer experience was always the reunion of old friends getting together and the making of new ones. Some of these friendships developed into relationships resulting in "wedded bliss" and a new generation being brought up in the Silver Lake tradition. Others found "wedded bliss" elsewhere and brought their spouses to Silver Lake who in turn began to love and share in its rich history. Some of those also contributed to new generations of Silver Lakers who then experienced this special place from their earliest years. The richness of lifetime experiences usually develop into a high level of devotion and commitment. 

Some Silver Lakers happened upon the Institute by chance discovery--Camp Asbury or the newer "Silver Lake Experience (Chautauqua Style)." Even these folk quickly discover the uniqueness of summer living "Institute style." The years have changed the programs and activities we enjoy during the summer which has broadened our calendar from a faith genre to one encompassing an expanded musical program, arts and authors, learning opportunities, and refreshing entertainment. Each of these enhanced programs made all the more rewarding by the opportunity of sharing them with old and new friends.

The Summer of 2020, however, will go down in local history as being the Summer of Covid-19. The 2020 Season with all its programs and opportunities was cancelled in June by the Institute Trustees so as not to contribute toward the spread of the novel coronavirus. It was the best decision that could have been made under the circumstances of a very contagious novel coronavirus named Covid-19.

Gone for the season and at least another year is the reunion of old friends and the making of new ones. Gone are the rich conversations over breakfast and around the vast variety of Dessert on the Dock. The regular opportunities for conversation and fun are very few and far between. It appears that the fears of contagion are causing folks to keep to themselves, stay masked, and socially distanced. We can hardly be blamed for feeling that way. 140,000 Americans have died from this virus. Six months after the first confirmed case in the United States, the south and west are rapidly worsening in available statistics.

Equally distressing is the caution that a vaccine most likely will not be the panacea that some are expecting. Its extreme ability to rapidly infect may cause the vaccine to be needed more than once a year in order to remain free from the virus. How long before we are able to trust that everyone in every family is being regular in their inoculations? The so-called "normal" may still be years away even with a vaccine.

Thus the Summer of Our Discontent may be immediately followed by "The Winter of Our Discontent." You know how serious it must be for both political parties to radically alter the tradition of their nominating conventions. Yet, in spite of it all, I choose to remain hopeful and excited about the future.

JUST RECEIVED WORD from the SLI Program Committee of some super summer opportunities for SLI residents only. Residents should read this through and see what all is available. Go to this Newsletter's SLI Password Page (top left column or click HERE to be taken to the password page and then enter your resident password in place of the word "password"). If you are a resident or property owner in the Institute and do not yet have your password, just call 493-4003 and say you are calling for your resident password; be prepared to give your name and cottage number which will verify your residency.

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