Deaths from covid, which are a lagging indicator, bounced back up after the long weekend of incomplete reporting, as they usually do. A few states still seem not to have reported. Yet even with that, the numbers have not gone up as high as recently. An encouraging sign.
More encouraging still is that there is no new variant looming.
I had hoped the decline would be apparent at the end of January, as some reliable sources thought at least possible. While that has not quite happened, something like it has just occurred only a little later. I have found myself being less cautious in the last two months, likely more from fatigue than from intellectual conviction. As with Americans tiring of war win or lose after three years, there may be similar response to restriction, that we (perhaps all peoples) cannot sustain a practice on the basis of intellectual convincing alone if there is no visible reinforcement from the environment congratulating you on your wisdom, as there is with car accidents or substance abuse. I have been irritated at people whose reasoning seems to be "Well I'm not seeing death from my yard, so it must not be real," but we all may be like that, with some getting there more quickly - even immediately, in some cases - while others hang on longer.