What a year! We have survived the apocalypse and come out on the other side. World politics and global finance is still on the boil but hasn’t yet bubbled over. And we are hoping that the world is becoming a better place for you and for me.
But before 2012 fades to dusk and a new year rises with the dawn on January 1st, I think it’s important to give the year a proper send-off.
And I’m not talking about new year’s eve parties.
A couple of years ago I came across something in Frankie magazine out of which my new end of year closing ritual was born. I write down a list of new experiences or events that I enjoyed during the year and I find it’s like watching the highlights after the grand final (background music optional) and it’s your own personal ‘best of’ for the past year.
This year I came up with 60 items and stopped because I had covered two pages. Ending something at the end of the page just felt satisfying but you can stop wherever you like and you don’t have to aim for a particular number. It also helps if you have a weekly planner to look back on the year.
So now I will share with you a few from my list to give you an idea. Please, indulge me a little. Here goes…
- Went to a detox centre in Thailand (a dream of mine that I thought would only happen when I had ‘made it’)
- Got an i-phone (and it has really changed my life. I’m one of those people I used to turn my nose up at. But those people don’t annoy me anymore. ha!)
- Fasted for 8 days (previously was sure I wasn’t able to skip lunch)
- Ate borsch
- Climbed a volcano at 2am to see the sun rise (Mt Batur, Bali)
- Saw Breakfast at Tiffany’s (how could I not love a film with a dramatic cat in the rain scene at the end?)
- Rode 50km in a day (and realised I didn’t have much of a concept of what a kilometer actually was prior to this)
- Bought indoor plants (we got a little addicted for a while)
- Was accosted by a short turbaned Indian man who told me my fortune on the streets of Luzern (November 23rd was the day my life changed, by the way)
- Hosted and cooked a dinner party on my own
- Bought Martin’s Christmas present in under 30 minutes (6 items AND it was December 24th)
- Sang Christmas carols round the table with the family for more than an hour (thanks to my father-in-law’s guitar skills and lyrics made possible with our i-phones)
- Had a snowball fight with our parents (my dad particularly got into it as mum shielded herself rather skillfully with a big blue umbrella)
- Saw Florence and Machine in concert and preferred to sit (as opposed to being crushed at the front or trying to get back stage) and I’m good with that (not lamenting my lost youth, no sir)
- Drank too much rosé on the street curb (it was the illusion of the tiny glasses) while watching a firework festival in Geneva
- Took a tap dance class (as an adult…to tell the truth, I missed the sequins, fake tan and fishnets of my youth).
Anyway, there’s another 44 where those came from. But my point in writing this is not to gloat or be one of those people I thought I hated before I got my i-phone. If you try it you’ll see that once you start, the ball really gets going… and soon you’re rolling.
Being grateful, seeing the positive, embracing the new, continual expansion – you don’t need to go out and meditate on a rock or bathe in champagne to end your year well … although both of those options also sound wonderful (if only I could meditate).
It’s fun to reflect and appreciate – as fun as any new year’s eve party I’ve been to in the past 10 years (again, not lamenting my lost youth – there’s just a lot of expectations around this night). It makes you appreciate the moments that make up your year, which make up your life, and to remind you as you go into the new year to keep trying out new stuff, as big or small as they may be.
Question : How will you close 2012? What are some new experiences you’ve enjoyed?