Happy New Year

Last month, Anita and I spent several days in the American Midwest. Our return to our former (and future) homes in the US gave us a new emotional and intellectual perspective on Dublin and our lives in Ireland. For about a week, I’ve been contemplating a long post about that new perspective.

I have notes that I jotted as we traveled, and they still make sense to me. But I haven’t been able to bring them together and write something articulate. So that disquisition will have to wait until inspiration strikes.

In the meantime, it’s a new year, filled with promise. It appears that most Irish professionals returned to work on the 7th, and that many residents of Dublin traveled during the long break. So the whole city feels like it really is starting anew. I’m familiar with that feeling from the semester-based academic schedule. Anita’s jobs, in the past, required a lot of work during the first few days of the year (and preparation for that work in the last weeks of the old year). I’m not sure whether she feels any different in 2008. For years, we both dismissed the idea of January 1st as a legitimate interlude in an ordinary person’s life, but this year, it feels right.

The rest of the world seems to be entering a new period, too. The Irish newspapers took a break from Irish politics — and we didn’t read about Irish politics at all while we traveled. After the new year, even the papers seem to find the old scandals less significant. And the American primary season is finally underway; the US political class is hyperventilating after holding its breath for the past several months. The primaries are followed very closely in the Irish media. After each primary, the results are always the lead news item, even in the three-minute news summary on pop radio stations. As you might expect, the Democratic primaries receive the most attention.

We’re off to a fast start this year — no contemplative hibernation in the snow for Anita and Will! So before it becomes ridiculously late, let me be the last to wish you a charmed 2008.

4 Comments to “Happy New Year”

  1. Sharon said...
    10 January 2008

    just a quick question?

    any new self-improvement projects (goals) planned for the year, since you can’t do too many home improvement projects – cause its perfect & you rent. Will it be in the form of a new poll???

  2. Will said...
    13 January 2008

    Ask and ye shall receive, Sharon! Please note that you can add your own project to the poll…

  3. Will said...
    15 January 2008

    A follow-up: The pop radio station that we listen to in the morning (TodayFM 100-102) has a typical, short news report. Today, the report included an explanation of the foofaraw of the Democratic primary in Michigan. That’s illustrative of the level of attention paid to American politics!

  4. Sharon said...
    15 January 2008

    just for a little local news from a Reporter in the field (literally from the fields of IL) – I am sure that you know (you savy interneters) that voter registration is at record numbers in Illinois & they had a record turnout for early voting (absentee, not dead voters). They are even registering voters at large churches in the city & south side. I think there will be a huge # of voters in Illinois especially since the 2 front runners in the Democratic primary have ties to Illinois. Also of note – Illinois is the only state that has donuts Thursday mornings with their constiuents in DC. (true story from a co-worker who has a picture with Dick & Obama & got to tour the white house last year)