If you’re one of those people who are celebrating the beginning of a new year, full of giddiness and resolutions, you should stop reading now, this is not a blog for the faint hearted…
I have to admit I’ve never really got the whole New Year thing. I can see why people make resolutions but I haven’t for a long time, after all, how many of us can say we actually stuck to them much past the first week in January? I tend to make my ‘resolutions’ at the end of Summer, something to do with the new school year and all that. Looking back I did even as a child, new school books “resolve to keep them neat and tidy” – you know the kind of thing.
As a family we’ve always put more emphasis on Christmas than New Year, my parent’s held parties and met up with friends, but to be honest I’m quite happy doing what I did last night; going to bed at a reasonable hour (10.30pm) with a good book and a mug of cocoa. Admittedly I did read until midnight, but only because I knew that if I turned out the light any earlier, I was only going to be woken then by fireworks.
Sorry but that’s another bug-bear for me; why do we allow explosives to be sold to the public! We’re berated for drinking too much (I enjoy a drink), smoking (I’m a non-smoker and do prefer the nice clean air in pubs these days, but hey if you want to kill yourself with a cigarette, go ahead – just not near me…) eating too much – the list of things goes on. We’re not allowed to buy guns, thank goodness! Yet the government thinks it’s fine to sell us explosives just because they flash pretty colours in the sky.
I’m a big advocate of making local authorities put on firework displays at Bonfire Night and New Year. Apart from anything else it would completely stop the firework related accidents which happen every year; let’s face it many of the people letting off fireworks in their back gardens last night wouldn’t have dreamt of driving their cars as they’d had too much to drink. But they were quite happy to go out there in the cold and let off gunpowder filled fireworks.
Not only that, but the fantastic BIG fireworks that organised displays are allowed to use are so much better and more fun than the ones you can buy in the supermarket. When I was younger the council used to put on a display every 5th November (New Year fireworks weren’t in fashion then) at a local running track, the fair used to be in town at the same time, so it was a real occasion. Hot dogs, a bonfire, fireworks and a trip round the fair on the way home – so much more fun than Bangers and Catherine Wheels in the garden.
Even if we had to pay an entrance fee, it would be cheaper than buying your own fireworks. I think one of our neighbours must have taken out a second mortgage to buy all the fireworks they let off last night!
You may think from all this ranting, that I dislike fireworks, but you would be wrong. I love fireworks, always have. I love to see the colours and the sprays of light in the night sky, the bangs don’t bother me either; unfortunately my pups don’t feel the same. I spent about an hour, as always the fireworks began quite a while before midnight, in fact some went off near our house when it was barely dusk; watching my dogs pace around upstairs, trying to find a hiding spot away from the loud bangs echoing around us. I don’t know what our neighbours were letting off in the street just behind us, but I’m guessing some of our armed forces personnel who have been in war zones would have felt at home, at one point the house was actually shaking with the noise from the bangs.
So when we eventually settled down at going on 1am I wasn’t in much of a New Year spirit.
So, to get back to the title of this post, what’s all the fuss about? We have a different number to remember to write next to the date (which within a couple of days we’ll all be complaining about as we keep writing the wrong one), we have the same problems, niggles, worries as yesterday. Hopefully our health hasn’t deteriorated over night and our loved ones are still with us. Unless we won the Lottery last night we are no richer than we were, so – what’s it all about?
If you think about it every day is “New Year”, each day we have the chance to begin again, start anew, make changes to our lives, make resolutions; if the only time we think about these things is 31st December into 1st January then it seems to me that we are missing something.
OK I think I’m ranted out, now that I have all this out of my system, I can get back to my usual (i.e. the same as yesterday) life, meeting friends and family, not drinking too much, trying not to eat too much (that’s a daily resolution!), stitching, reading, working, walking the dogs, cleaning and cooking; all the things that make up our varied lives.
For those of you who made it this far into the blog with giddiness and resolutions still in you, Happy New Year! I hope your resolutions stay with you, that you succeed in all you try and that 2014 is a wonderful year for you.
For those New Year Bah Humbugs like me, I wish you the same wonderful 2014 and hope that everything you wish for is yours.
And believe it or not – as I’m just about to sign off, at 1pm in the afternoon, someone has just begun letting off fireworks again! Bah Humbug and all that.