Whew, 2009! I can count nearly as many reasons and people why this change should be celebrated. Funny. New Year’s is still just part of the roll tide of tick tocks, but somehow it seems that time briefly pauses, sucks in a deep breath, and then breathes out magic dust. Now, NOW, we have permission, ability and everything else needed to create new lives or new us (if so desired). I guess we could do that with the end of each month. Each day? After finishing this last well-traveled Christmas cookie? : )
I thoroughly enjoyed the simplicity of my holidays. In St. Louis I listened to Elvis on repeat with my nephews (new enthusiasts), enacted “adventures” of LEGO Indiana Jones (including struggles with dishwashers and squirrels), and spoiled my taste buds silly. In Minnesota I played Balderdash with kiwi slang, snuggled under fleece blankets, and enjoyed the truest winter in my summer break—sledding, hockey, and making snow-flamingos (angels are overdone, aren’t they?).
I realized that I’ve spent most New Year’s out of the country: dinner from a hotel mini bar when restaurants were closed in Spain, foam wars in Mexico, Bollywood tunes in India, ocean-jumping in Belize, and last year’s beach walk and champagne in New Zealand. But, this year I sat in the comfy chair in my parents’ house, eating the world’s best popcorn (mama’s secret), watching New Yorkers cheer and kiss every hour on the hour, and listening to little booms and pops in our suburban neighborhood. Thanks to the longevity of friendship and unsolvable discussions, I also got to celebrate the flip again 3 hours later, Alaska time via phone lines. [Meanwhile in New Zealand, everyone had long been sleeping and eating off their hang-overs.] Really, there’s absolutely nothing more I could have wanted.
I guess there are plenty of reasons to be both excited and nervous entering this new year. New president, new world disasters; tipsy finances, promising tax returns. Everything I read lately seems to be speaking in unison: Don’t let yesterday (or tomorrow) use up too much of today. Enjoy what you have right now. Perfect. I think I will guiltlessly finish the rest of these Christmas cookies and send thanks to all the people that made my holidays so exactly what I needed. From my little corner of the Southern Hemisphere I send my own booms and pops: HAPPY NEW YEAR! May the magic dust reveal what you already know:
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” BARACK OBAMA, speech, Feb. 5, 2008