I have to confess, I have come to hate the enforced "celebration" of New Year. There's something about an arbitary cut-off point that begs me to rebel against it for starters. The buying of supplies as if there was an impending rerun of the Siege of Leningrad is so unnecessary too (though the amount of alcohol being carted out of Southgate branch of Asda would hint at mass production of Molotov cocktails). Not taking part in this scrum, but still getting stuck in the traffic was even more frustrating.
So we reached home, shut the door and hunkered down for the night. I was even asleep before midnight, though I was woken up by the volley of fireworks as the clock struck 12. Didn't even bother looking out of the window at them. I am firework phobic (with scars to justify it), but I think what forced me into a state of utter disinterest was the cavalier expenditure when those that need money are sliding into destitution.
The next few years are going to be hard, as this unwanted government punishes those who sport any shade of otherness to theirs. From here on in, I will do my utmost to ensure that where possible my money goes towards making me less and less dependent on major corporations.
We still need to be fed, shod & clothed, and until I have access to enough land to grow more crops and raise livestock, I will still have to use supermarkets for some basics. Never likely to grow enough tea for us, so total un-dependence is out of the question there. Sewing and knitting skills are still lacking, but aside of work I stick to jeans & plain tops most of the time. Same with footwear - boots, 7 days a week, given half a chance.
Until such a time that I am confident enough to make my own, I will repair what I can myself, and pay to have mended what I can't manage. My favourite brown boots, for instance, are on their third set of soles. They're a bit lived in, but they fit my life.
Last year I spent several months in pain due to a back injury. It took a while, but thanks to physiotherapy and planned exercise I now feel much more mobile than I have for years. I need to stay that way - the poor and the sick will soon be on the receiving end of government cuts and I don't want to be caught up in that. So regaining as near to full health as possible is another priority.
Looking back at the numbers of posts I've made this year compared to previously, I realised how much I've been slacking. No more just good intentions - I need to take time to be creative. I've spend too many nights just sitting down moaning and vegetating. I need to make an effort to put pen or brush to paper, make useful or fun things. Stop feeling like I've done nothing for hours. I don't really have any artistic ability, but there are a few craft projects I'd like to tackle. I know I'm good at making a mess, so that's a start.
I need to be better at growing my own food. Yet again the summer ran out before all my crops were ready, but we're OK for some things, and the new back garden beds will give us a start in Spring. Tomorrow we hit the allotment for the first time since the snow. Hopefully it's not under water. If it is, I'll just have to get enough gravel to make a drainage ditch at the bottom and build sturdier raised beds.
Are these New Year's resolutions?
Nothing of the sort. These are decisions I made on the night of the midwinter Solstice. I resolved that from the following morning I would make gradual changes, and review and add to them at key points of the year.
Gradual change is far better and easier than sudden shocks to the system. I've cut down to three biscuits instead of four with each cup of tea. Cutting back to one immediately would be too extreme. And with the size of my usual teacup, totally miserly.
Onwards and ever so slightly upwards.