I got my shot two weeks ago.

No, I don't mean I got a shot at a fleeing pheasant or a running cottontail rabbit. I got shot with a syringe for COVID-19. It was painless.

I'm not much for having needles poked into my arm, but this shot in the arm left me feeling almost giddy. I felt like a portion of a weight had been lifted from my shoulders as I was released from the waiting room. I received about 10 pages of information on what I should do in case I had an adverse reaction, but the most I experienced was a sore spot in my upper arm for about a day.

My second shot is set for the second week of February.

On the drive home, I was thinking about what this past year has done to our lifestyle. The result of living during these trying times has not been a fun experience. Gone were the Friday night meat raffles at the local Legion. Gone were the impromptu lunches and get-togethers with friends and relatives.

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Even a trip to the bait shop for a fishing trip seemed a bit risky. No birthday parties or anniversary celebrations. Festivals were canceled, so no fun was to be had there either. Even our town's beloved weekly Duck Races bit the dust.

Not much fun to be had by anyone.

Our governor and many others got their noses in a noose by trying to sail through these rough waters. No one wants to be told what to do. It is our national heritage not to be told what to do. We chafe at any bit that is put between our teeth, no matter who does it.

I do not envy any public official who must make decisions at a time such as this. Well, I guess we have to blame somebody, so pick your target.

I've come into contact with some who tell me that they have decided not to take the shot, even if it is offered to them. My simple reply is that growing up on a small farm such as I did, we vaccinated our livestock to keep them from disease. Every cow and pig received vaccine.

The one time we didn't vaccinate, I lost my whole litter of 4-H pigs due to acute erysipelas. They were gone overnight with no warning. That experience was a lesson learned the hard way by me. After that happened, we vaccinated whenever a vaccine was available.

If a pig deserves a tried vaccine to stay alive, don't I?

Those of us who lived through the polio epidemic remember how relieved our families were when it was first announced that a vaccine had become available. I remember taking the authorization papers home from school for my parents to sign. They didn't hesitate and the next day we lined up in the hallway and everyone got the first of three doses, the last being given in the form of a sugar cube.

The entire world breathed a sigh of relief as the hospitals slowly emptied of polio patients. I felt it was a miracle.

I got that same feeling waiting for my shot two weeks ago as I waited in line with many others in the basement of the hospital. You could actually feel the sense of relief that permeated through that room as we sat there waiting to be released. Maybe we all saw the glint of light at the end of this long, long, dark and troubled tunnel.

My wife and I are scheduled for our second shot next week. We eagerly await the time when we can dine with our daughter again, have coffee at the local cafe and walk into a bait shop without thinking of what might happen.

And, we'll again be able to hit the Legion with our friends for the weekly meat raffle or celebrate my brother getting another year older. We've missed a lot of things. We've all got some catching up to do!

See you next time. Okay? Stay safe!