We made 190 dumplings this year (today). When we boil the dumplings (about forty at a time), the kitchen, and eventually most of that side of the house, fills with steam, and when it's code outside (around thirty today) the windows fog up in a very pleasant and domestic sort of way.
Spent the Change of Years almost entirely in Real Life, sitting around talking to some neighbors and former neighbors, eating and drinking too much (slight Sangria hangover today), and watching the crowds and the painfully artificial people on the television engaging in New Year related program activities, most of them intended to sell me things. When the ball dropped on Nivea 2009 we all whooped and raised our plastic champagne glasses and shook hands and kissed and stuff. (I'd kissed M an hour or two earlier when I walked her home because she was sleepy and didn't want to party until midnight, but still it was fun being in a room containing people kissing.)
Slept late this morning (with above-mentioned hangover), watched bits of the Rose Bowl Parade (which has become almost as annoyingly bug commercial production number based as the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, went and retreived daughter from a friend's house, and we made dumplings, and ate dumplings, and listened to Spanish music from her iTunes library. And now I am writing in my weblog because that seems like a good sort of thing to do on New Year's Day.
Various of the weblogs that I read (and most of them, I notice, are Second Life weblogs) have meditative or otherwise thoughtful New Year entries about the year(s) past and the year(s) to come. I don't think I'll write one of those particularly, either here or there, just because nothing to say along those lines is clamoring to be written down. But the dumpling-steam fogging up the kitchen windows was good; so we'll go with that.
I probably won't post this for awhile (although you're reading it right now; isn't that amazing?), because the people next door are having a New Year Open House and I want to stop by. The little boy just went over, taking a couple of Gamecube controllers as requested, and I think I will follow him. I do expect to remember to post this sometime while the date is still accurate, though.
Back from the party next door (the little boy is still there). They had sangria there too, the saboteurs. But I didn't have all that much, and it's still early, so I hope to avoid hangovers tomorrow.
Neighbors, and friends of neighbors, are in an interesting middle position between family and friends. Friends one is free to choose, to first approximation from the entire population of the universe. Family one has very little choice in; none at all, really, except for a few edge-cases. With neighbors, one chooses a neighborhood, a place to live, from a wide variety of possibilities, and then the neighbors come along more or less automatically. We have a very good set of neighbors! Definitely nothing to complain about.
But reading some of my Second Life friends' weblogs I do wonder, with an odd sort of early XXI-st Century wondering, how it would have been to spend the Change of Year with friends, flying and dancing and building and joking and blowing things up, rather than with a room full of friendly neighbors watching television.
I know, I know. *8)>
Anyway, Happy New Year Nivea 2009, and I wish you and yours all the best in all the future not-yet-happened times to come.