Welcome to one of my favourite places in the world. I’m not going to tell you exactly where it is, because not many people have discovered it for the treasure that it is, and as a result it is still a relatively peaceful backwater. Most people head to the nearby holiday town (two words that strike horror into my peace-thirsty heart, although I force myself to make the trip now and then for the bakery’s incredible jam donuts), and that is just the way I like it.
I didn’t do a lot of writing while I was there this Christmas/New Year. I spent more time walking the hills and drinking in the views, and simply feeling glad to be in this gorgeous place, where postcard vistas are so ubiquitous one could almost take them for granted. Almost. I never lose that thrill of gasping up my first hill and feeling my heart leap as the almost ridiculous beauty reveals itself little by little, teasing me as I struggle for the summit. Then I am at the top, alone, with a delicious secret: I am gazing at a painting. It is too blue and green and red and jade and silent and heart-stoppingly perfect to be anything but a masterpiece.
On New Year’s Day I usually make a resolution or two. Some I keep, most I don’t. One of last year’s was to “find my bliss” – to search for creative fulfillment and launch something in my life that would make my heart sing and perhaps make a difference in the lives of others. I kept that resolution (you’re reading a bit of it. My novel-in-progress is another bit, and various other writing adventures and achievements.)
Let’s not mention the other one, which had something to do with that bakery and those bloody donuts and about five kilos.
This New Year’s Day passed me by somewhat. From what I recall I floated soporifically through the day on a gentle cloud of meringue and strawberry champagne cocktails. Not so sodding gentle the next morning.
So no brand spanking new resolution for me this year. I did, however, after the hangover had worn off (it only took three days), expand on last year’s resolution. Now that I have found my bliss, I need to rediscover it each and every day, nurture it, expand on it, take risks, be brave, and above all…keep writing.
Writing gives me such pleasure, and I hope to share more of that with you this year.