The days become shorter and the nights are therefore longer. Winter creeps up on us like a raccoon coming out of hiding in the darkness of Central Park. The weather is described as breezy, chilly and containing flurries. What about just telling it like it is: "cold and even colder"! The long weekends arrive as fast as they left us and I begin to reminisce about last year's holiday season. Things were oh so different then. I had a job, though the floor beneath me was starting to shake. I got a bonus though it was far from adding any value. It was cold, way colder than now and I remember cursing myself for ever wanting to come to this great city. Looking back, I confidently conclude that things are far better now. Though I may be unemployed, I'm happy and fulfilled. I am no longer subjected to humiliation and ridicule by my jealous she-boss. I control my time, my destiny and my feelings and there is nothing more satisfying than that. I have managed to shape-up, body and soul and there is nothing that can compare to being healthy. I am stronger, more confident in my abilities, and am ready to embrace any challenge that life throws at me.
The stores look pretty this year, their decorations only slightly less grand than last year's. The shoppers look hungry, not for food but for finding the best deal they can. Sadly, the holiday shopping has caught up with me and I am determined to use up all my coupons, discounts and premier customer benefits. As I scramble to find the best deal, online and in real-life, I end up buying more than expected or needed. Gladly, I learn that returning merchandise can also be fun, sometimes even more enjoyable than shopping, especially when I get back more than I actually paid. Those coupons can bite you in the ass Bloomingdales!
The restaurants are full this year, but their prices slimmer. This poses yet another incentive to spend. You can have the same great food and experience for less. We hit three restaurants this weekend, but we spend the equivalent of what we would've spent at one fancy place last year. We have found other dining options, just as tasty as the previous ones and have also discovered the Lunch Special. "Dinners are so last year", I told my husband as we devour our brown-rice spicy tuna roll.
When everything is considered, this year has been an awesome one. It has forced challenges upon us and we have overcome them with flying colors. We have learned to appreciate everything we have, material and health and we feel grateful to be where we are. Let's hope next year continues to move us forward and make us stronger and more whole human beings!
Happy New Year New York!