I’m writing this on December 30 – exactly mid-way between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Time to take a deep breath before rushing to those New Year’s Eve parties – If you aren’t rushing already. Americans, especially the ones involved in retail, are always rushing.
I’m picking a bit on retailers, because on Friday I was picking up photos, and had one of those moments when you accept the truth of what you already know is happening. There were large “dumps” of holiday merchandise ranging from half off to 75% reductions. (Next year they may pay the consumers to just take it out of the store.)
Anyway, in place of the holiday items there was a large display of fireworks, mostly firecrackers. [Sidebar: Spending time with neighbors and shooting firecrackers is a custom in Hawai`i. The firecrackers scare off bad luck – so we like to light ropes of firecrackers – up 1000. It used to be that at midnight on December 31, Honolulu looked and sounded like a city under attack. It was a bad event for anyone with breathing difficulties. Finally, county ordinances have begun to require a $25.00 permit per 5,000 firecrackers. This has reduced the explosions.]
Also on display were party hats and streamers. Grocery stores are advertising their party platters. People are making plans for New Year’s Eve. Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Solstice. Long forgotten in our rush into a fresh New Year.
This year, according to common “resolutions”, I will …. What? Stop Smoking? Exercise? Stop drinking coffee? – all very negative approaches to what may be positive changes. This year …. I will shoot the rapids? Climb Kilimanjaro? Spend more time with my family?
This year…this year…this year will be better than last year. This year I will be happy. This year I will have it all. Just spend New Year’s Eve with me. We’ll drink and light fire crackers. We will kiss at midnight and we will be happy.
Featured Image by John T. McCutcheon, 1905. US Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons
Sandra Wagner-Wright holds the doctoral degree in history and taught women’s and global history at the University of Hawai`i. Sandra travels for her research, most recently to Salem, Massachusetts, the setting of her new Salem Stories series. She also enjoys traveling for new experiences. Recent trips include Antarctica and a river cruise on the Rhine from Amsterdam to Basel.
Sandra particularly likes writing about strong women who make a difference. She lives in Hilo, Hawai`i with her family and writes a blog relating to history, travel, and the idiosyncrasies of life.