“We’ve got this! Sending virtual hugs to everyone! Keep love in your hearts, a dance in your step, take care of your neighbors, be patient, be kind, make joyful music, share your gifts, and have faith that what remains from this experience will be golden.” – Dianne Krouse, island musician
At the time this dedication was submitted and its accompanying song “Aquarius” was played on my show, “Dear Vashon,” on Voice of Vashon, we were all thinking lockdown would last two and a half weeks — in and out, one and done. We were thrust into fogging up our glasses, adjusting to masks, acting like kids on extended spring breaks digging out puzzles and forgoing showers, and singling out family members to brave Thriftway for toilet paper.
When Dianne’s dedication was first read on the air on April 8, 2020, “Dear Vashon” was also a nascent concept — only one week old. I read this as the final dedication in that first show and, as the unrehearsed words spilled out, it deeply struck a chord with not only me but with listeners far and wide.
As this week marks the one-year anniversary of the “Dear Vashon” show, I’m stumped to be anything other than shocked with grief for all that we’ve lost, amazed at our communal tenacity and inspired by the generous words islanders have submitted for neighbors, organizations and businesses.
Hosting a weekly live radio show was absent from my pre-COVID radar, not to mention creating a show that featured songs and messages of hope, celebration and gratitude between islanders. Know that I’ll be checking the “exceeded expectation” box on this experience — and here are a few of the literally dozens of reasons why, as highlights from the past year:
- From Pete and Allison of Vashon Events to the Island: We can’t wait for the day we’ll be back creating fun music experiences for everyone. Big love to everyone on Vashon, be safe, be healthy and we’ll see you on the other side of this!
- To Paul Rowley, The Beachcomber: For one of the intrepid, unstoppable remaining reporters Paul, who is holding down the fort at Beachcomber and getting the paper out, week after week!
- To island farmers: To our local organic farmers, back porch, backyard, green-thumbed gardeners, VIGA movers & shakers, landscaping lovers of earth and soil who sustain us- I dedicate this song to you with gratitude.
- To all the Vashon teachers: Thanks for being there for all our kids in this hard time…above and beyond!
- From Aster to Robert: You’re the wind that I sail and the wind that brings me home.
- From Mom to Adriana, for her VHS graduation: Reach for the stars baby girl. And dance, always dance.
- To Vashon Class of 2020: The most beautiful and resilient group of people I know. Hang in there, your time to change the world for the better.
- To the Burton Coffee Stand crew: I’d like to dedicate it to Kathy, Shannon, and all their customers at the Burton Coffee Stand, whom I miss even more than I miss my hometown of New Orleans…
- From Kate to Doug: Thanks for playing our wedding song for our second marriage to each other after our divorce — Total madness!
- From Porter to Kathryn: From Porter to my ever wonderful loving wife, Kathryne. I love you not only for who you are but for who I am when I’m with you!
“We’ve got this! Sending virtual hugs to everyone! Keep love in your hearts, a dance in your step, take care of your neighbors, be patient, be kind, make joyful music, share your gifts, and have faith that what remains from this experience will be golden.”
There is something eternally radiant about its optimism and what became steady and haunting reminders in a period that for all of us has ebbed and flowed with grace, sorrow, patience and hope. I’ve read it every week since that first show and it’s my rally cry until we can safely say we are “back”. Thank you for listening and have a great day, Vashon!
Submit your song and message dedications to email@example.com, hosted by Tara Morgan. Listen live Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on your Voice of Vashon radio, app or smart speaker.