Drive-by Shower

During these times of social isolation, we have all figured out how to celebrate milestones in unusual ways. We have shown our ingenuity over and over again.

Think back to all the grand events I have written about during the last 15 months: my brother’s 70th birthday where I had to find a washroom in the woods and got prickles in my undies, our Christmas group of friends who celebrated in a park while wearing our coats and drinking wine out of our water bottles, or – the most civilized of all – the parties in our garage decorated with those elegant plastic sheets. These are unforgettable highlights of our pandemic social lives.

So, when I got an invitation to a drive-by baby shower, I was not surprised. Although it did sound a little like a Mafia drive-by event, I was pretty sure none of the other guests would be toting guns.

This poor young couple has had a rough go of things. They have had to postpone their wedding 3 times: first of all in April 2020 when the pandemic was just getting started, then in October 2020 when the second wave was ramping up, and again this past spring when the third wave was upon us. Finally they gave up and had the church part of the wedding; in a large church with only about 50 guests spread far apart. No handshakes or hugs, not even any small talk afterwards. Just a few “I do’s” and they were done. Then a baby was announced and the drive-by shower was arranged.

First of all, I had to figure out what to wear. Never mind that my dress-up clothes are out of date; they are also dusty! And my dress-up shoes? My feet screamed in pain when I tried to put them on. I could hear them yelling “We want those comfy sneakers back!” And definitely no open-toed model – I haven’t had a pedicure in months.

Then Peter said that he wanted to go to the shower too. After all, it was his nephew’s baby and besides, there were no rules for a drive-by shower that we knew of. He even offered to exchange his holey gardening pants for something respectable. Now his hair – that was a different story. Both of us desperately need hair-cuts but, if John Tory can appear on TV with his new hairstyle, then we could probably go to a baby shower with ours.

The shower venue was the host’s driveway. When we arrived, there were cars parked on the street and guests had escaped their vehicles to drop off their gifts. People were socially distanced on the driveway and the street, enjoying a cool drink and some longed-for conversation. The kids were chasing each other on the grass near the curb. And the host had morphed into a traffic cop!

But the best were the dogs. Since the invitation had said nothing about dogs, people decided to bring theirs along. I counted at least 5 breeds, from tiny purse dogs to big guard dogs. They cavorted around, smelling each other, until the 2 big ones fell in love and spent the rest of the time nuzzling together. Was this appropriate behaviour for a pandemic baby shower? Who knows??

I did miss all the typical baby shower games like Name The Baby and quizzes with questions such as “Which parent will get up in the night to change the diapers?” But it was just so lovely to see faces of friends and family that have been missing from our lives for 15 months. No hugs yet, but it felt like one step closer to normalcy. And some day soon the new baby will be listening to all the stories of her pandemic baby shower.


Dogs in love:

4 thoughts on “Drive-by Shower

  1. Lovely! Any suggestions from what sounds like a mad social Covid whirl to this country mouse, for my 80th in about a month?


  2. Sue, thank you again for a lovely story and lovely picture of the dogs.

    My son and his wife had their baby shower in a Zoom Meeting (after that I participated at another one too). The good thing with Zoom was that friends and relatives from around the world could participate. Her sister was the host and she made us play games and answer questions. We even got a couple of “cards” on which we could select an answer like “Boy” or “Girl” by clicking with the mouse on it. The hostess was able to tally the score.
    In order to make the Zoom Meeting manageable they even had two meetings one after the other. One for the family and one for friends. They opened the gifts on screen. It was a different way of fun. Nothing replaces being together and hugging each other, but life goes on. We only need to be creative. You are one of those creative people.

    Wishing Peter’s nephew and his wife a wonderful pregnancy. Congratulations.


  3. At least the dogs could hug! It sounds like a great way to celebrate an event. I’m looking forward to patios opening on Friday. My birthday is coming up so I’m looking forward to outdoor dining.


  4. So glad that this couple could have a little joy in their lives after the wedding cancellations. Glad that Peter could join you too!


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