“Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘it will be happier.’”

The weather hasn’t changed. I looked out the window when I first opened my eyes and saw the clouds. I didn’t want to get out of bed but Nala did so I had no choice. The deck is wet. It had rained sometime earlier. The day is warm at 47˚. More rain is supposed to hold off until tomorrow. I’m not enthusiastic about a new year which begins with rain.

Today I have no plans. I have actually vacuumed a couple of room already. The pet hair was taking over. I also cleaned down the stairs. I do feel quite accomplished. I know the dump is looming, probably Sunday.

I don’t make resolutions. I did once but at some point I decided a resolution was too much of a commitment. I used to smoke. One Friday I decided not to go to the store to get a package of cigarettes even though I had only four left. I never smoked again. It had been time to stop. Changes are mostly like that for me. They just seem to happen at the right time.

When I was in Ghana, I went back to visit my Ghanaian family in Bawku over New Year’s. My sister insisted I go to church with her on New Year’s Eve. I smiled and said yes, but inside I was feeling trapped. The church service would be long, hours long. It was, but it was amazing. The church was filled with people. The women wore their traditional dresses made with beautiful Ghanaian cloth. Many men wore fugus, smocks, while others wore kente cloth over one of their shoulders. The church was beautiful, a bright, lively scene with all those colors. The singing started first. After that the dancing began up and down the aisles. My sister tried to drag me into the dance, but I had no rhythm and that held me back. I did clap and sing from my pew. The minister gave a sermon about old sins and new beginnings. The Ghanaians nodded, the speeds of the nods determined how much they agreed with the minister. It was fascinating to watch. I even tried my hand at it!! I tried nodding and mostly did okay. I don’t remember thinking the hours were long to be in church. The time passed so fast. That whole experience is one I will never forget. It was joyous and warm and lovely.

When I was a kid, I never understood the hoopla of New Year’s Eve. As far as I could tell, the first days of the new year were no different than the last days of the old year, well, maybe a little colder, maybe not, but saying goodbye seemed silly to me. When I was older, I celebrated some years but not usually at parties. My friends and I did game nights. We’d pause at midnight, toast the new year, clink glasses and then drink our champagne. We’d go back to the game with our champagne glasses in hand. Of late, I am awake at midnight just because I am always awake at midnight. I keep an eye on the TV for the time, acknowledge midnight and say Happy New Year aloud into the air hoping it will be.

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6 Comments on ““Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘it will be happier.’””

  1. Bob Says:

    Hi Kat,

    Today is another version of yesterday but with cloudy skies. We did get a little sprinkle of rain yesterday and today. There might be some more light rain this afternoon. Thunderstorms are predicted this evening and throughout the night. The cold front should come through about noon tomorrow and it will bring strong north winds and much colder temperatures. Sunday morning they are predicting lows in the mid 20°s. All this past week our lows were in the low to mid 60s. This is the same system that blew down the power lines in the Denver suburbs and caused wild fires. I hope your family in Denver were not affected and are doing alright.

    Have you ever attended a church service here at an African American church? The services are very similar to your description of what you experienced in Ghana. Of course most of slaves brought to the New World came from West Africa.

    When I was a kid, it was a big deal to stay up and watch the time ball drop in Times Square. I rarely went out on New Years Eve and now wouldn’t leave the house for anything. Tonight we will stay up and watch the ball drop and toast a glass of soda. Today, I couldn’t stand being off another day, so I came into the office to do some work for Monday. The years seem to go by quicker every year. I’m glad to see this one depart.

    I want to wish you and everyone here at Coffee a very happy, healthy, and prosperous 2022. Hopefully, we will get out of this pandemic soon rather than later and begin to live again.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      It stayed damp all day but was warm enough so it didn’t freeze. More rain tomorrow. We will have a typical winter’s temp on Monday, in the 30’s, then back to the 40’s. Strange winter we’re having!

      No, I haven’t ever been to an African-American church. There were none where I grew up but I know of a couple in Hyannis. That was a remarkable service with drums and dancing.

      I never saw the attraction of making it to midnight. I did a couple of times. I blew a horn, yelled Happy New Year, drank some pretend champagne and then went to bed.

      I wish all of us a better year too come. I figure we have already had the worst or at least I hope we have. May we be happy, healthy and loved.

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I guess we celebrate the turning of the year for the same reasons we celebrate birthdays and anniversaries. It’s that whole milestone thing. We are on the cusp of Change. Again. And it’s as good an excuse for a party as anything else. 🙂
    Here’s to happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year to you and everyone at Coffee.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I guess this last year is one we’d all like to forget. It has to get better.

      I’ll take a party. It has been such a long time since I was last at one.

      Wishing you the best of all years, a healthy, happy year.

  3. Birgit Says:

    Greetings from 2022 (it’s past midnight now), Cheers and a Happy New Year everyone!

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