For readers who don't live in the UK, December 2015 was the wettest since records began, and thus far January has continued the trend. We don't have horrendous floods here in Derbyshire, as Yorkshire does. Our rivers are swollen, some fields are flooded, but that's about it.
But it has been wet and wet and wet, and the garden is sodden. The patio furniture looks as if it's made of soggy cardboard. And too many mornings it has not been light until after 8 a.m. because the skies have been laden with dark rain and heavy mist.
At least the rowing boat on the bank above the Monsal Trail is watertight:
Every morning on getting out of bed, I've been saying to myself - at least we aren't flooded, at least we don't live in the Jungle in Calais. We have a warm, cosy home that we can afford to heat. We have so much to be thankful for. And then there's the fact that we're still ----- alive!
In the last week, when I've been quiet on the blogging and writing front, I've been thinking. Last year was tough. Mary died in the spring, and I had health worries in the autumn. The result of my quiet week is this
1/ lots of ideas for stories, characters and writing projects
2/ a decision about what to pursue this year.
What last year taught me - at last - in my bones - is that we don't know how much longer we have to live, and we don't know how long we'll be fit enough, well enough, to enjoy the things we like to be doing. So I've decided that my word for this year is ENJOYMENT, and that means keeping as fit as I can so I am able to do all the things that I enjoy. This will mean forcing myself out in waterproof trousers on my bike on rainy days. But it also means that I shan't feel like a wastrel if I get to the end of a day in which nothing tangible appears to have been "achieved," but which has been filled with loveliness - people, kids, nature, creativity. It also means I shan't be beating myself up if I buy an occasional garment in the Toast sale, such as this. I've missed the window for being a rock chick in this life, and I've spent the last year resisting biker jackets of one sort or another, but now I've succumbed. So there.