I will long remember the year past as one of death. While nobody from my family or circle of friends died in 2016, a number of favorite musicians and actors did. I was also profoundly affected by the mid-October passing of the King of Thailand, Bhumibol Adulyadej. Over the decade-plus that I’ve lived in Phuket, I’ve become a staunch Royalist and the death of His Majesty came in the midst of my annual courses with Thai bank staff members. Seeing their sadness, as well as the intense mourning that occurred throughout the nation, deeply effected me and I continue to feel a bond with Thai people that is difficult to describe to other foreigners.
As 2017 dawns, I pray that it will be a year of much happiness and light after the darkness that pervaded much of 2016. Don’t misunderstand me: there were quite a few good times and the year is certainly ending on a high note in that I’m in my first “real” relationship in around six or seven years.
Another year older, another year wiser? I have to admit that I’m a bit confused – is this the Year of the Sheep or the Year of the Goat. Some breeds of goats and sheep do look similar (the tails being the usual giveaway) but they aren’t exactly the same animal. Most websites detailing the Chinese zodiac (including Wikipedia) seem to be going the goat route, a few like the much cuter sheep, and others are saying they are the same. With the stamps marking the Lunar New Year that I’ve seen so far, most are calling it the Year of the Sheep but the United States Postal Service and Hong Kong Post are both declaring it the Year of the Ram!
In 2013, I didn’t make any New Year’s resolutions at all and that worked out fairly well. You keep them when they aren’t there to begin with! But with the dawning of 2014, the Year of the Horse, I find myself with a number of things I would like to improve upon in my life. Last year, I dedicated myself to helping others even more than I had before but feel I can do much more.
Of course, with any promises one makes to oneself it is virtually impossible to maintain such resolutions over any length of time. I’m actually surprised that I couldn’t find an specific Android app for tracking New Year’s resolutions. I’ve decided that the best way to keep my goals is to let others know about them. The more people who know what I’m trying to do, the less likely I am to give up (I hope!). And, hopefully, they will offer support when I start to drift away from the resolution.
I’m only making two New Year’s Resolutions for 2014: Continue reading