Happy new year! From a crotchety and grateful old man.
I don’t automatically care all that much about New Year’s Eve. I’m not much of a drinker, and I get queasy if I’m not in bed by about 3:00 AM, so not a “proper” partier either. But this crotchety old man does respect the notion and beauty of marking the end of one year and beginning of another, even if the calendar is basically arbitrary (the solstice is a much more significant turning point, but I can handle two).
Also, NYE’s have an odd way of coming to represent the year, or at least mark the stage. There was the one way-back-when in Santa Cruz that I spent tortured by jealousy, followed a solar loop later by a party in Switzerland where the sense of freedom and possibilities was as tall as the Matterhorn. (But much warmer.) Then there was the year K and I spent in a beautiful place, and tried our fledgling best to talk about the problems we feared and felt…but failed. A calendar later came a New Year’s of loss, confusion, guilt and pain.
Last year I went to a club with friends. I’m as happy in a club as a leech in the desert, and I spent the evening wrestling dickish temptations to shout-talk to someone “How about we go someplace where impressions and experiences are more than single-dimensional celebrations of snap judgments and superficiality?” Or “This is to proper socializing as twitter is to a book.” Or the most succinct, the gutteral growl of the cranky. “Grrrrrrumble!” But I was there for my friends, and appreciated the chance to be near them, even if I could only hear their smiles.
This year I’ll miss those friends, unable to hug and/or high-five them (ever tried to do both at once?) but in a much more satisfying environment: the world. The one that feels real, and comes with more dimensions than I can perceive.
New Year’s Eve 2014 will find me somewhere in Cambodia. Not sure where, yet. Maybe I’ll have new road-friends, I hope so. But I’ll have my lady by my side, audible and tangible, and though I won’t be able to touch the loves and friendships I cherish in other countries, they will be there too, audible and tangible in my heart.
That feels like a pretty good way to start 2015.