Hitting a milestone birthday during these COVID-19 days

CONNAUGHT — Tanya Geertsema marked her 50th birthday Friday amid the weirdness of a once-a-century pandemic that nonetheless failed to kibosh the milestone festivities.

The mother of three kept a safe social distance as she and husband Mark welcomed well-wishers for “drive-by” congratulations that started in the afternoon and progressed through the evening.

The couple’s looping laneway off Connaught Rd., north of Chesterville, saw a succession of motorists drop by and roll down their windows to express congratulations near a sign cheekily declaring “just my second time turning 25.”

“It’s been good. Our pastor came by; he has a convertible,” Tanya said. “So he was blasting The Beatles’ Today is your Birthday.”

“And then Mark’s nephew crammed all his little kids in a car. It’s tricky; all the kids wanted to come out and go out on the swing, but I gave them little pre-packaged cakes instead.”

Exchanging waves instead of hugs “is the hardest thing,” she said.

The pandemic hasn’t otherwise changed life too much for the Geertsemas, although Tanya says her self-employed electrician husband has been less busy. Meanwhile, they’ve always home-schooled their children (with only one remaining at the high school level), while Tanya works from home as a bookkeeper for Financial Discipleship Canada. “We’re all Covid-set,” observed the daughter of Ralph and Marge Norg of Chesterville.

“It’s crazy to think we’re 50 already.”





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