Thursday, 21 December 2017

New Year? AGAIN?

Well... I am back. 

Let me tell you...This job thing gets in the way of everything! Especially if you have not worked for years. 

I can’t believe how long it has been since I blogged. Perhaps it is time to stop altogether. Maybe I will stop in the New Year. Because New Year is a good time for changes. And also because I just have to blog about the New Year. I noticed that I never failed to write something about it this time of year. And the one about a duck is still one of the very favourite blogs of mine. So I can't stop now, can I.

What is it about New Year that makes it so ridiculously important? It is like money, everyone keeps claiming it doesn’t matter but of course they all know it does. 

A girl at work asked me today what was my ideal New Year. 

 “Where” was the exact word she used, and I explained to her that honestly? what I am beginning to realize is that it is not the location but the people you celebrate with that makes it good or bad. I know it might sound a little cliche, but it is true.

The most important ingredient in that Happy New Year recipe you should be adding is the people who matter to you the most. ( +duck + champagne) And it doesn’t really make much of a difference where you happen to be. Have the people you love with you. It could be a quiet night at home in front of the TV, or in bed; or it could be in a big circle of friends, if you have that many that you actually like. 

We say back home that those who you have with you on New Year ’s Eve will be the people you will spend the following year with. So hey, no pressure, guys. 

I tried all sorts of celebrations to figure this one out. One year I was in Edinburgh, listening to live music and getting crushed in the 2,000+ crowd on the Princes street, Another time, husband and I decided to travel to Belize, where friends of ours had a diving school. And then, there was the year with the duck. And there was a year here, in Doha, with Venezuelan friends who made the most delicious fish soup at 5am, and I walked back to my villa in the compound around 6am, as the sun was rising. See, I tried all sorts of celebrations. And yet?....I can’t help but feel a little melancholic on New Year’s eve. Always, whatever I am doing. 

There is something about that night that makes me feel a bit funny.

And I am not talking about this pressure on you to stay awake! Be excited! Be popular! that particular night. Like in this joke I quite like about Valentine’s Day:

So, no. It is also something else. 

Maybe it is the unwelcome, uninvited focus the night brings on to the fact that time flies. It is watching your children turn into teenagers, wanting to escape to celebrate with their friends, and not you. It is about saying goodbyes. It is about missing people who are not with you on that night, whether because they are somewhere else, or had passed away. It is the time you somehow involuntarily take to reflect on the whole year gone, and things you did or didn’t do. It is about the past, about remembering your childhood, which will never return, your grandmother’s hugs, the lightness of being. 

So yes, to me, New Year is inevitably nostalgic, whatever I may be doing that night.  

And yet, I love it.  I love Christmas, even though I grew up without celebrating it, and the New Year; I love this time of  year-with the tree, and the lights, and the kindness and the gifts and the smiles of everyone around you.

I wanted to take this time to wish you all, whoever and wherever you are a very Happy New Year. It is the year of Earth Dog, and according to Chinese calendar, it is the year of changes- good and bad. Here’s to yours to turn out to be good. Good luck and don’t be too sad on New Year’s eve. If you feeling lonely, please refer to my personal guide on how to turn your new year into a happy night. 

And remember! According to chemistry, alcohol is a solution. 

Keep cool, my friends.