Thursday, December 31, 2015

Looking Back, Looking Forward

Today is December 31st - the very last day of 2015. Tonight is the bacchanalian festival of New Years Eve, when people gather in large numbers to celebrate the coming of the New Year by drinking too much and playing with explosives ... rather like the Fourth of July, just with colder weather,

I don't know about you, but I'm happy to see the receding backside of 2015. It was a year that began with the death of my father and the death of Agnes's father within a week of each other, and continued through employment uncertainty. enormous amounts of depressing Congressional buffoonery and low-brow, fact-challenged presidential campaigning that often made it embarrassing to admit to being an American.

On the positive side, my son and his family moved back to the States from Germany, finally getting all our grandchildren on the same continent, if not in the same state. Agnes and I enjoyed our Western Caribbean cruise in November, and the annual trip to Chincoteague Island in August, and we celebrated our first large-scale family Thanksgiving and reunion in several years,

Continuing with the positive, I'm still employed ... for a few more months at least. I'm still more or less healthy (and in order to ensure that I stay that way, my daughter gave me a Fitbit for Christmas, along with the stern announcement that she's going to be monitoring my vitals, diet, and exercise closely in the coming year). Agnes has not strangled me in my sleep yet, either, which is an amazing thing in itself.

Looking ahead to 2016, I plan to retire by the end of the year, allowing myself more time to play with my grandchildren, attend reunions (of my college drill team in April, and Agnes's school in July), plant a real garden, get started on the book my mother always thought I'd write, and wallow in depression over the state of the country. Oh, and document all of it on my blog, which I hope you will continue to read and enjoy.

Have a safe and happy New Year's celebration, and - in the words of one of the best toasts I've ever heard - may the best of last year be the worst of the year to come. And come back tomorrow, New Year's Day, when we name the 2015 Ass Clown of the Year.

Happy New Year!



Kristen Drittsekkdatter said...

Happy New Year, Bilbo!

eViL pOp TaRt said...

Happy New Year to you, Bilbo, and your family! I hope 2016 yields fewer frustrations! Nest wishes with retirement!

John Hill said...

Wishing you many blessings in the coming year and looking forward to your membership in the retirement club.

Anemone said...

Happy New Year Bilbo!

Gonzo Dave said...

*JANUARY* 31st? Did we start celebrating a little early???

Happy New Year, Bill - no matter what month it really is.

Mike said...

"It was a year that began with..."
You passed one hell of a stress test in 2015. Here's hoping 2016 is a little smoother.

Linda Kay said...

Looks like you will be having a great 2016, rest aside the depressing state of the Union. I'm pretty sure every generation has it's ups and downs with the Government, and this too shall pass on to something else we can fret over. Have a safe 12/31 celebration and a fabulous 2016!

allenwoodhaven said...

That's a great toast. I'll be borrowing it, thank you very much. You keep writing and we'll keep reading. Your thoughts are always interesting.

Happy New Year to you and yours!