New Years Eve festivities marred for revellers in Munich and Brussels by terrorist plots.
Recalcitrant America Gun Laws, thanks to a constitution written in very different times and circumstances and a gun lobby that seems better organised than those citizens who seek a safer, more peaceful and dependable America.
North Korea testing nuclear weapons.
Record tide of refugees worldwide.
Floods in the United Kingdom, USA and here, in Australia drought, floods and fires simultaeneously. Climate change?
So far I have written in the new year, more than I rung in the New Year.
Strange how the change of year always takes a while to become automatic within written communication. Similarly what I did in 2015, that all seems so recent, has now become last year, in an annual domino cascade diminishing the significance of life's sequences and events. It takes some adjustment, like any other form of loss or genuine change. 2016, is not yet comfortable and at ease within my vernacular as yet!
Many good things passed for me last year, yet I remain less secure about the prospects of 2016, than when I heralded in the 2015 year. Perhaps it is because I simply prefer the number 5 to the number 6. Perhaps, I fear "the times are a changing" in ways that worry me.
So far 2016 has been good to me:
Red cheeked finches have been visiting my garden regularly, a very rare species in suburban Ballarat.
I have regularly enjoyed the company of friends.
I have delighted in fine food and wine, shared in good company.
Sorting through my wardrobe I have rediscovered items I will now put to good use.
The garden looks better for considerable weeding, as does my wardrobe.
I have been amused by the absurdity of auto correct on my mobile, cell phone or "handi", as it attempts to edit sense and meaning out of what I intend to say, even insisting my name is, in its own right, worthy of auto correction. Auto correct is almost like a third character attempting to engage in what is essentially meant to be two way written communication. It makes me scream, cringe and laugh, but most importantly keep my proof reading skills honed, before I hit send!
Autocorrect, when tested, absurdly insisted "may all bad things get funded", a sentiment I certainly don't share. Personally I could think of nothing more sinister. I could catalogue many things I would celebrate should funding be completely cut. I would redirect billions of dollars into health, education and decent housing with clean running water and renewable energy worldwide, if I personally had the power to do so!
Simple technology played yet more havoc when I left my mobile charging up at home, whilst I travelled to Melbourne for an appointment, leaving me out of reach to the friend with whom I had planned to rendezvous for lunch. A two way worse thought scenario ensued. The friend was convinced I had had a serious accident as I was unusually incommunicado, whilst I believed that my friend had decided to accept a better offer than my company at the last minute and simply stood me up.
Luckily, just as I was heading towards my car to make the return journey, said friend materialised on the opposite corner. She had slept in and had been desperately trying to let me know she would simply be late.
Is it so amazing we once would have escaped all those negative fears in our pre mobile phone existences and simply met at the appointed time, or called the restaurant to let the other one know of their delayed arrival?
Fear is an insideous thing. It manifests crazy constructs of our individual mind that become all the more ghastly upon the pondering. With so much bad stuff currently going down on a world scale, sometimes ignorance is truly bliss. I turned off the television and radio when I had had my emotional fill of wild fires too close to home for comfort. They resurrected memories of devastation and enormous loss. To hear more of the same, I feared, might push me over the brink of despair and rendour me into a kind of stupour that might take months to recover from. My choosing to switch off did not deny my empathy with those confronting those horrendous fires. Rather, their suffering mirrored my own emotional trauma and personal losses incurred by hellish past bushfires that spared our country home in recent years, but claimed those of neighbours as well as the lives of several friends on Black Saturday. In years past there was a night filled with fear when the local voluntary fire brigade went missing. Fortunatley they were found alive and well the next morning, but had run out of fuel and lost radio comminication in their attempts to get back to local brigade headquarters.
There is something so deep and primal in such experience. It has, literally burned me. I will carry the scars of such trauma and human experience for as long as I live. If only I were alone in such a place, but emotional scars are, sadly a part of the human condition!
As for 2016, may none of my readers be burned, in any sense of the word.
May your 2016, be filled with love, peace, gratitude and fulfillment.