I opened the tall windows that looked out on the street. In the distance I heard excited voices counting down.
“Six, Sept, nuit.”
I opened the windows overlooking the tiny courtyard,
and hurried into the pantry to grab pots and a pans.
“Neuf, dix, minuit.”
I opened the heavy wooden door letting out the old year. Ushering in the new.
“Happy New Year. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE,” I cried as I banged the pans together. “Happy New Year,” I shouted walking up and down outside my little house in Paris.
The last several hours had been spent sweeping away the cobwebs of old memories.
Dusting out the corners of past thoughts. Cleaning away the detritus of the old year. Tabula Ras – a clean slate for this brave new year.
And this brave new year will be filled with more. More of simple pleasures. More evenings lingering with friends and family over Sunday night dinner. More watching the dying embers of the outdoor fire and listening to night sounds. More rainy days spent rereading favorite books. More of just being. More taking joy in the simple pleasures of this precious, ordinary life.
The sound of the revelers fade away. Reluctantly I close all the windows. Shut the big door with a resounding thump. I have lined up twelve church candles. The beginning of a ritual. On the first night of each month I will light a candle Today is a fresh new day and anything is possible. Tonight I will light the first candle.
“And now let us welcome the New Year,
Full of things that have never been.”
(Rainer Maria Rilke)