Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ending the year on a tired note

I would not say 2008 was the worst year we have lived through, but it has been exhausting. Sometimes in a good, "sure have accomplished a lot" way and sometimes just in that regular old bone-weary way. I won't elaborate—you've seen some of it here and some just doesn't need to be elaborated on. But in a few hours 2008 will be history and the slate will be wiped clean. (Isn't that a great image? If only it really worked that way—)

We have been at the Oregon Coast for the past three days. We rented a house and invited Emily and Cayo and Sofia and their Ecuadorean visitors. Andy was invited, but had to work. The house was wonderful. We cooked a lot and ate well and read and walked a bit on the beach and worked on a puzzle. Some of us were sick and some didn't sleep so well, but it didn't matter really. We relaxed mostly.

When I was a child we visited the Oregon Coast every few years with my grandparents. I remember once, standing at the edge of the water, looking out at the Pacific, the thought occurred to me that I was at the edge of this huge continent and it was all right behind me. My back was to everything—all the people, all the cities and mountains and rivers and monuments and this vast society. I was standing right on the very edge of one huge thing and facing the beginning of something else. An odd thought for a child, I guess, but I have never gone to the beach since then, that I wasn't struck by that same thought. This morning I had that same thought, standing at the waters edge and also the thought that on this last day of the year, it, too, was just behind me and the beginning of something else right ahead.

And sew it goes.

Happy, better, stronger, more peaceful, more hopeful, more rewarding, more love, family, laughter, and good stuff, New Year to all of us.


  1. I had that same feeling the first several times I stepped on a Pacific Coast beach -- thinking all of America was at my back and in front of me, what, Japan? Hawaii?

    Hope you weren't among the sick in your party, and that '09 is better than this sorry dog of a year. Looking forward to toasting the new year with you.

  2. Happy New Year Terry! Having once lived on the Oregon coast, and during one of the wettest winters ever, I know how beautiful it is. That feeling of being on the edge of the world. Enjoy all the good that comes in this new year.

  3. That's interesting - I feel the same way on the east coast on the Atlantic looking out to Europe, except I feel a new world and new possibilities behind me.

    Salut to a bright, shiny new year full of hope and health and dreams.

  4. You told me of that experience many years ago and I have never forgotten it. I remember almost everytime I am in that position on the water. It always makes me feel hopeful

    Happy New Year! All the very best to you and your family.

  5. And onward we go into the new year - the past year behind us. Water is a good place to begin a new year - especially on the coast.