It's always the same each year - the evening begins with a determination not to drink too much, but something always goes wrong and I spend the first few hours of every January 1st with a terrible headache. In the world before children it didn't matter, but hangovers aren't compatible with looking after a manic seven-year-old and a screaming infant.
The rest of the day followed the usual pattern: painkillers in the morning, a large late breakfast and a wholesome walk in the countryside as an act of attonement for the previous evening's excesses.
It was a beautiful day, but something felt wrong. The Independent newspaper had a headline screaming about climate change and the evidence seemed to be in front of our eyes - a field full of daisies. Apparently crocus bulbs have flowered, lambs have been born and plants that should have died in early November are still in bloom. It's all very strange. Also, the ground, which should have been 'deep and crisp and even' was so wet and muddy that my friend Kathryn and I slipped while climbing up a slope.
I read very little last year. I don't know why. Perhaps the addition of a screaming insomniac baby didn't help or maybe I wasted too much time blogging, but this year I will devote more time to reading and less to drinking wine and surfing the internet. I will never achieve Dovegreyreader's ability to read nine Dickens novels in one day whilst quilting and healing the sick at the same time, neither will I manage Scott Pack's 137 books in one year. I am a slow reader. But if I can manage a book every week or so, it will be an improvement on the pitiful handful that I read in 2006.
In the meantime, have a very happy, healthy and prosperous new year.