Someone, I think it is Ganching, has her own "New Year" date in mid-January sometime, which always seems to me to be a very sensible idea. Given that last Friday, 15th January, I slept a grand total of two hours (I think due, rather shamefully, to eating too many choux buns, muffins and biscuits at book club and spending the night in a gross, feverish sugar sweat), then woke up to the house flooding with melted snow bullshit and had to retire to my bed for the whole afternoon to mournfully gum most of a coffee and walnut cake (once the cake hunger is awoken it cannot easily be quelled) whilst watching the second series of Transparent, I think today is the earliest I can possibly allow the new year to start in this household.
So: happy new year! Here are my resolutions, they are minimal:
1. Stop reading Times Online articles about how I am parenting wrong. The Times has a lot to say on this topic, barely a week goes by without them telling me something about the rich and varied ways in which I am fucking my children's future up. The things are often contradictory, but this does not stop me believing every word. However, this cannot happen if I do not read them, so it stops now. Actually, more generally The Times is very keen to tell me how to live my life (every week Shane Watson seems to be telling me something I am doing wrong or am too old to do), and I am far too receptive to this kind of thing. I don't want to cancel my subscription because The Times has so many good writers and some completely brilliant journalism, but I need to be more discriminating in what I allow myself to read.
2. Not allow more than one mug on my bedside table at a time as that is the top of the slippery slope to utter squalor.
3. Write more. I did not write enough last year. I would take on pretty much any job that stopped me from writing and I need to not do that any more. I'm old. If I want to write something decent before I die, I need to get on with it.
4. To continue to try and reign in my most arsehole-ish tendencies, as far as possible.
5. To keep going to Dutch classes because they allow me effortlessly to speak to people to whom I am not related twice a week, which would otherwise have to be a resolution.
These are a bit earnest, aren't they. I think I am in a bit of a sackcloth phase. If anyone has anything utterly stupid and frivolous to suggest, I am all ears (eyes).
The New Year has started well:
- Beautiful cold, so cold, sunny day.
- I passed my Dutch exam this afternoon (even though the oral exam covered literally NOTHING we had been told to revise and instead of purchasing ham or phoning people up to ask what their table looks like, we were supposed to talk about whether we followed fashion, what the hell, look at me, I am wearing a stained jumper and dusty pensioner jeans);
- Then I got love-bombed by a silky soft brown labrador puppy on the way home;
- Then when I arrived there was a letter saying the stubborn administrative knot I have been trying to untangle for about six months has been untangled (no thanks to anything I or anyone else did, it is an act of god, or an act of Belgium);
- Then I ate celebratory cold crumble from the dish in my quiet warm house;
- Also, the new Gwyneth Paltrow hen has started laying unfeasibly cute tiny eggs.
This is as good as January gets, I feel.
20% Poor posture
20% Legal procrastination
10% General time wasting
10% Continued tiresome book insecurity/angst
10% Annoyed with dog moaning at me to light the fire
10% Probably too much of that face powder from the last post
10% Fish oil
10% Thrilled at the cover of this Brussels noise abatement information brochure for obvious reasons:
Look at the saxophonist's face. Totally unrepentant. Terrible terrible people.