Monday, 3 January 2011

And on into 2011

Out here in the country things happen at a different pace. Slowly, mainly. So when zero-hour approached on Friday night and the DJ was still playing something by Rihanna, I began fidgeting a little.

‘Don’t panic,’ said my friend Bruce. ‘Everyone knows you count down to midnight on the thirty-first of December.’

Bruce lives in the city – what does he know?

Midnight came and went, and still the teenies were bopping to something loud and inexplicable (definitely not Abba’s ‘Happy New Year’ or even the Time Warp), and the hosts of the street party we were at were poised with champagne bottles and whiz-bangs at the ready and we were all holding our breath… and the DJ put on something by Ludakris (or someone else with a misspelled name).

‘Pop the bottle!’ I screamed hysterically. ‘Pop it! Pop it! Pop it!’

And at last they did, and I immediately got drenched in sweet champagne (and as a result stuck to everything I touched, like human Velcro, for the remainder of the night). And gratifyingly the DJ played Auld Lang Syne and if I’d been physically able I would have joined crossed hands and danced in and out, but it was a challenge at that stage just to keep my brandy and coke vertical. (Yes, brandy and coke.)

But there it was at last – 2010 finished, and 2011 begun.

A friend remarked recently, ‘2011 is going to have to try really hard to be kakker than 2010,’ and I agree that 2010 wasn’t exactly a bumper year, but my god does anyone want to go through 2009 again? We need to remember, people, that we’re just coming out of one of the worst financial setbacks the world has ever seen, and if you’re one of the lucky (or rich or ridiculously organised) ones who made it through without losing your job, your house or the shirt on your back, you’re doing okay.

As 2011 approached, during December, my brother in Johannesburg was diagnosed with two life-threatening aneurysms, and Johann’s father in Bloemfontein died unexpectedly – these were not good omens. But people do get sick and people do die, and we who are fortunate enough to be in good health and have loved ones around us must carry on. And we must do it with great enthusiasm, and often behave badly, because otherwise what’s the point? You know that old chestnut: ‘Work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ve never been hurt, and dance like no-one’s watching you.’

Now’s the time for all that.

The morning after: Here in Riebeek Kasteel, 1 January 2011 arrived with a flash and a bang. Thunderstorms are extremely rare in our part of the world, and it hardly ever rains in summer, so the massive electrical downpour that arrived early on the first day of 2011, after several harbingers of lightning on New Year’s Eve, was a fabulous start to the year. Thanks to Peter, Bruce and Pieter (and Daniel, not pictured – poor man had to go to work!) for excellent company, and to Tony and Liesel for having the foresight and fortitude to provide ‘babbelas burgers’ on New Year’s morning! (And, PS, Johann, this is the last festive season we spend apart.)

Stumble Upon Toolbar

No comments: