By Tom Ford

Like so many of you, we’ve been looking forward to the “season of the vaccine” leading us out of this dreadful pandemic. So much so, we cautiously dipped our toes back into normalcy when we resumed our a drastically scaled down version of our family Easter gathering this year.

The big feature of the get together is always the ‘full contact’ Easter Egg hunt. Hundreds and hundreds of plastic eggs are filled with cash, coins, candy, and prize certificates. The older teens and adults hide them all around the property. Then, armed with Easter baskets and a grown-up helper for the smaller ones, the kids are released from their sound-proof booth to find the eggs, pocket their contents, and win prizes for most eggs, best sportsmanship, first egg, last egg, most money, and as many categories of prizes as we have kids. Parents pocket the cash when they think no one is looking, the kids eat the candy when they think the parents aren’t..
We had less than a third of our usual numbers this year, and strongly encouraged masks and distancing. As with other families, we also have our share of “smarter-than-Fauci” family members.

Fortunately, Maureen and I were fully vaccinated by then.
But we worried as we watched local COVID numbers grow and head to what is now the worst month ever for COVID in Monroe County.

It doesn’t seem as though we contributed to the April resurgence with our gathering. Of course, almost all of the family members who saw masks as a problem are now COVID survivors, with limited risk of re-infection and spread. Most of the rest of us wore the masks and kept our distances.

And that’s what we need to do here in Monroe County.

For just a little bit longer.

Those of us fully vaccinated can step out a little more, but masks are still required outside the home (and just the right thing to do anyway to model good civic behavior). That, and getting vaccinated.

If we don’t, we might not be able to enjoy that family Thanksgiving this year as we are all hoping we can do. (Me, especially, because it’s the one big holiday that we go to someone else’s home.) 

Tom Ford, editor of The Boro & Towne News, lives in Mount Pocono, where he enjoys the view from Under the Bridge – Mount Pocono’s gateway to the Top of the Mountain Community. Write to him at