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  • Writer's pictureThe Rough & Tumble

You Were That Friend

We find ourselves in Rapid City, SD, parked in the same parking lot we were parked in almost 1 year ago to the day. We know that because it’s Rally Week here in the Black Hills and the sound of motorcycles on their pilgrimage to Sturgis fill the air. Last year we came through to go on a backpacking trip up the tallest mountain East of the Rockies and were surprised to find that the pandemic did not exist in South Dakota, at least not during Rally Week. While we waited for our hiking partners to arrive, we stayed in our camper, watching Redbox movies and trying to fix our fridge which didn’t really work. We didn’t go outside except to walk the dogs, for fear of the cavalier folks who turned the Sturgis Rally into a super-spreader event. We didn’t get sick but by the end of our week here we were certainly watching for motorcycles -because they likely had COVID.

It was a shock coming from California, where we’d hunkered down for the first four months of the pandemic, wondering what would happen next and writing commissioned songs for people and releasing them every few weeks on our Bandcamp album, Everything Goes Viral But My Band. One of the last songs we recorded there is the song we’re releasing today, called “You Were That Friend” that we wrote to celebrate a friendship that had weathered many hardships over the years. That sentiment resonated with us as we’d found ourselves relying on our friends a whole lot more during these unprecedented times, even though we couldn’t see them in person. Everyone needs someone they can count on, can vent to, can laugh with. We’ve been lucky to have so many of those friends in our lives and we hope this song can help you celebrate those friendships in your own life.

A lot has changed in the last year: vaccinations have opened up, a new administration is in office, people are able to see their loved ones again and feel safer about travel. But a lot has stayed the same: the rally is still happening, we are still in a worldwide pandemic and our neighbors are still getting sick. We’re still parked in this dang parking lot with a fridge that doesn’t really work. We are in a precarious situation and in the context of the pandemic, the best way to keep others safe is to get vaccinated if you’re able and wear a mask if you’re not. (And it’s definitely a good idea to wear a mask even if you are vaccinated.) There are so many ways to be a good friend to someone you love and to your neighbors, but right now, one of the most effective ways to be a friend is to keep them and yourself safe.

See you out there, friends.


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