What did you do when you saw the news that Dr. Anthony Fauci had decided we didn’t need to wear masks if we were fully vaccinated?
If I could’ve jumped, I would’ve jumped for joy.
As soon as I could, I went somewhere without a mask. I’ve hated them from Day 1, mostly because, with my chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, they wouldn’t let me breathe.
I grocery shopped maskless. Nobody got on my case. I went to church maskless, but that’s nothing new because I’ve been sitting by myself and pulling off that mask on several Sundays.
The best thing about getting at least partially free of the mask and the “social distancing” is being able to go to places where friends are gathering.
As a person who went absolutely nowhere for months and months, I’m happy to report I recently had somewhere to go for a whole week.
I’ve been thinking of happy, friendly words to celebrate and, as usual, Merriam-Webster, my favorite word people, have come up with a list of words for fellowship.
That’s what we’ll soon have lots of. Fellowship.
The first word is consociate, which is just like it looks. Being with someone. A root word for companion.
Sodality comes from “sodalist,” which means comrade. All us comrades in arms are joining together.
Then there is conversation, which I’ve always thought of as people talking to each other. But it really does mean having dealings with others. They say this other definition is archaic.
Companionship. Now there’s one I can hang my hat on. And when I think of that, I don’t even have to think of people. Certainly, our pets provide plenty of companionship.
And companionship leads directly to compassionate. That means to harmoniously accompany, and of course that, too, can apply to both two-legged and four-legged friends.
If you sometimes have a need to describe a person with whom you share a meal, that’s a more delicate word than chowhound; the word you need is convive. If you’re drinking, he also may be called a cupmate. I think this is where conviviality comes from, though Merriam-Webster doesn’t say.
I think you can figure out this one, even if it’s in French. It’s “compagnon de Voyage.”
Lastly, comes philia, love of friends or one’s fellow man. Social sympathy.
That’s the one we should all be rooting for now, coming out of years of anger, sadness and sickness.
You may leave on your masks if you choose. That may be a good choice. Probably keep you healthier. One of my doctors plans to keep his for just that reason.
But if you feel as happy as I do, celebrate bare-faced companionship.