Lines in the sand

I’ve always liked anniversaries. And birthdays and holidays and all those days that are important only because we decide that they should be. I like the way people scatter moments across the calendar so we know when to celebrate things, when to notice that we’re getting older or that a nice thing happened a while ago. Sometimes it’s just, as an elderly neighbour once told me, a day to remember that time marches on.
There is no real difference, technically speaking, between December 31st and January 1st. It’s a bit like when you turn eighteen and suddenly you’re allowed to buy alcohol even though nothing happened since the day before to justify the change. You didn’t even get new ID, it’s ridiculous. There’s only a new year because once upon a time humans decided that there should be and what the hell, this seems like a good place to put it.
And then someone else decided that a good way to mark this line in the sand would be to have a really big party.
The thing about New Year’s Eve is that I’m not really one for parties. More often than not, I spend the evening watching movies on TV or struggling to stay awake for the fireworks. This year we were so busy playing TelephonePictonary that we missed midnight entirely. The thing I really enjoy about the changing year is the fact that it’s perfectly acceptable to get all nostalgic and/or talk a lot about the future. At other times of the year, this behaviour can be considered slightly antisocial.
Sometimes years happen to you and sometimes they sort of slip by. There’s always going to be years that you look back on and think “Was that when…was that when that thing happened? Maybe? Was that another year?”
In lots of ways 2013 was more about last times than first times. But I didn’t mind, not really. The thing about goodbyes is that they aren’t so sad when you’re ready for them. I was ready to finish my degree, to put formal educational behind me. I was ready (so ready) to quit my job. I’m ready to leave Newcastle.
In 2014, in case you missed the memo, I’m moving to Melbourne. Boyfriend is going to uni to study writing. We’re moving into a house with a couple of friends (just as soon as we find a house to move in to). And then… I don’t know? This year is the second time in my life that I’ve started a year with no idea what was going to be in it. The last time this happened I did all sorts of crazy things, like starting a blog. It’s like jumping into an ocean bath when you can’t see the bottom and are therefore unable to confirm the absence of sharks with any certainty. Anything could happen, or nothing could.
I have zero plans beyond February 1st (let’s have coffee). On a related note, if you know someone who might like to employ me, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Credit for the top two photos to Fin.

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Further reading

December – home

I spent the first minutes of 2018 on the beach. I’ve never actually spent New Year