Thursday, January 01, 2009
The Bonfire of Regrets
I stood in subarctic temperatures late last night and into this morning as part of a merry group celebrating First Night here in my hometown. What you see here is a cellphone image of the "Bonfire of Regrets," something I've been hearing about for years and yet never participated in personally until New Year's 2009.
I assume the idea is to metaphorically (or perhaps literally, with the help of pen and paper) throw your regrets of the past year on the bonfire as part of your efforts at beginning the new year fresh and unencumbered.
As I stood there, these were the chief regrets that swam into my mind:
* Not wearing warmer gloves.
* Not getting there early enough to stand at the fence, where, Petra tells me, it was tolerably warm.
* Angry words exchanged within the last week with someone who means the world to me.
That was about it. I don't mean to imply I Am Perfect and Perfectly Happy With Everything About Me. (I don't know anyone who lives on that planet; do you?) But... I am more than tolerably happy. I am happy. I feel blessed: in family, in relationships, in work. I feel gratitude, not regret.
As I sit here typing this, 10-plus hours into the New Year, I'm fairly astonished to read my own words. But there they are.
Wishing you love, warmth and meaning in 2009.