I’m pretty sure that was also the year that I didn’t notice that the pinsetter wasn’t done with its work when I took one of my turns. My eyes were probably focused on those little darts they have on the lane, to help you aim, and I didn’t even look at the end of the lane until just after I released my ball. Go up, go up, go up, I probably urged the apparatus silently in my mind, maybe even not so silently in my body, with some unconscious shoulder shrugs or hip checks. (Hey, if a butterfly’s wingflap can alter weather on the other side of the world …)
Didn’t work. My ball hit the thing, and an employee at the lanes had to walk down there and retrieve my ball and do something to set the crooked setter right.
It made me feel only slightly better when a grown man did the exact same thing a few lanes over and a few minutes later. He had enough oomph behind his bowling ball that it knocked the pinsetter out of alignment. At least I didn’t break it.
So that year (and I should make clear that I was technically a grown woman, or nearly, because I was in high school or college when this happened), I began the new year somewhere between the bowling alley and home. Probably on Route 40, National Road. Moving between where I’d been and where I was going.
There’s nothing wrong with starting a new year in a bowling alley, and if someone had invited me to bowl this year, I probably would have gone, and stayed until that other ball dropped.
Nothing wrong with beginning a new year in motion between was and will be, either. That’s kind of where we are a lot of the time, isn’t it?
But I don’t want to live there. So when the first year of the new day dawns, and on each of its days, I want to be, in body and mind and attention, right smack on is.
It’s time to tuck 2015 in for the night, and tell it a bedtime story about itself.
Or maybe a bedtime list. Five things about 2015 that I am grateful for, in no particular order:
- Work took me to two cities where I have family, so I got to stay a few extra days and see them after the work was over.
- This was the third year in a row to spend time at the bedside of a very sick loved one. This time the loved one lived.
- I got to see and be with far-off friends in Nebraska and Santa Fe and Pittsburgh and Nashville and Texas and probably some places I’m forgetting, and also right here when they passed through Little Rock.
- My little urban cabin is a sweet place to live.
- This website happened.
And there are so many others. A few of them outweigh all of the above in magnitude, but they are the kind of thing you hold close, and mention, if you do at all, not in a blog post but privately, directly to the joy-givers, the occupants of the heart.
Goodnight, 2015. Thanks for everything.