Lockdown Lemonade #36 by Tina Ross

Catching Up While the World Was Slowing Down

I have a friend who makes the BEST lemonade ever! Apparently, she tells me, there is some controversy about whether or not to use simple syrup – needing to heat a 1:1 ratio of sugar to water. But I do know, if you just add the sugar to the one-part lemon juice it dissolves without heat. There is always another side, or sides, to a given state of affairs.

Then there are other varieties: Pink lemonade – an accident, so says a tale, resulting from dropping red cinnamon candies in a batch. Brown lemonade – made with brown sugar. Limonana – a mixture of lemon juice and mint. I’ve had this – I recommend it. And, in France if you order Citron Presse, you are given the separate ingredients; syrup, water and lemon juice to mix in a ratio of your liking. Any way you make lemonade it is a cheery beverage. It’s honest and simple.

And that’s how I would describe this past year for me. While our lives became complicated, and for some dire, by the unknown and unfolding variables, there was a forced, stripped-down simplicity; waking, walking, accepting, slowing down and reassessing in an honest, no-frills way.

In November 2019 I was a Chiropractor practicing nutrition. By December 2019 I had retired to pursue a part of myself I had always rebuffed, the singer/songwriter. She was finally about to be given her due. Enter Covid.

As I settled in to what was at first quiet disappointment, I realized that this was an opportunity for me. I could buff up my chops, seriously study songwriting, work on my voice and gain some unredeemed ground.

I began to soft-pedal my dashed hopes and search out virtual songwriting groups, conferences, retreats and concerts. And the choices were growing. I showed up most days/nights of the week to participate in learning and contributing to the musical community that was also secluded, but reaching out.

I have met so many extraordinary people, from all over the world. This would not have happened without this sour-lemon-citron-covid.

So, I took a 1:1:1 ratio of curiosity to acceptance to patience and mixed myself up a sweet and tangy blend of new original songs, guitar playing that more closely expresses my emotion, a voice that has more subtlety than pre-pandemic and a whole lot of 2-D friends. I joyously attended an in-person gathering of musicians and music lovers recently and ‘met’, in 3-D, a bunch of those people. It was surreal and so real at the same time.

We all had to find ways of adjusting and sweetening the sour. My strategy was to catch up for lost time while the world was slowing down.

~ Tina Ross

Tina Ross is a New York based Singer/Songwriter who has been described as timeless and timely, a fresh wind blowing from the 60s, but with a contemporary vibe and flow. Her songs have been recognized as a Finalist in The UK Songwriting Contest, Honorable Mention in The John Lennon Songwriting and noted as a Top Five Finalist for The International Blues & Roots Radio.

In an attempt to keep us connected as we continue to find our way through these often stressful times, some in our extended community have been sharing their experiences, lessons learned and hope as they’ve dealt with Covid, lockdown, boredom, lack of inspiration, etc. We are all looking for ways to make lemonade out of the many lemons! This column will continue on a weekly basis and postings will be released at 10 AM Pacific every Monday, so watch for them! For guidelines and submission details, please contact Julie Zipperer at juliez@far-west.org or Marlynn Block at marlynn@far-west.org. Submissions will be posted based on approval from the Lockdown Lemonade Committee.

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