Happy Tenth Day of Christmas! Happy New Year!
Here at the Star Rigger Ranch, we celebrated Christmas with family and good friends and good food, and celebrated the new year by completely failing to notice midnight come and go. The homemade eggnog tasted good, though, and we finished Season 3 of Jack Ryan, which give or take a few wobbles in the final episode was amazingly good throughout.
I am very happy to say good riddance to 2022, and I hope the screen door hit it in the ass on its way out. Welcome 2023! Try to do better, please.
Marked at the beginning by some significant challenges for some family members. (Weathered and largely overcome, thank God.) Colored throughout by continued creative block for the guy trying to finish his book series. (To the point that I have sought out professional help in rooting out the cause of the block.) Brought low by the dreadful news from the Ukraine, under assault by the murderous Putin. Smacked upside the head by my diagnosis of pulmonary fibrosis, which continues to affect our lives on a daily basis. (I will write more about this another time, but suffice it for now that I seem pretty stable since bringing supplemental oxygen into my life back in August.) We lost Captain Jack, our border collie mix, gone from our lives since October. I do miss him. And on a more minor but certainly aggravating note, I am still awaiting the return of my laptop and tablet, lost at LAX in December, identified in lost-and-found inventory, and claimed, but not yet acknowledged.
On the plus side, there were some good things to remember. A great family reunion in June. A couple of wonderful trips to Tanglewood during the summer. A memorable family Thanksgiving. A trip to L.A. that gave us quality time with both family and friends whom we had not seen in too long. A low-key but very enjoyable Christmas season, as noted above. Also, I got new print editions finished and released into the wild of four of my earlier books. Yay. There are probably other things I’m forgetting.
What will you bring us, 2023? New hope and new treatments for this disease that’s trying to kill me? (Not if I get you first, little frakker. We have not yet begun to fight.) Peace for Ukraine? Politically in the U.S., who knows? Another dysfunctional Congress? Or will the people who actually care about the good of the country find a way to some kind of common ground? There are hopeful signs, at least on the state level.
Did I mention that we are planning to move, later this year? Yep. Twelve feet, straight down. We are planning to trade apartments in our two-family house with daughter and her husband. We’ll be closer to the ground (not so many stairs), but will have a lot less room. This is a serious challenge! We are already working on the process of downsizing: culling the books and media, getting rid of years of accumulated sediment, as well as distributing ancestral belongings to other members of (Allysen’s) family. I have begun the painful but necessary task of seriously pruning my SF library. Man, that hurts. But it needs to be done. For the move, but also so that we don’t saddle our children with as much stuff to sort through and dispose of as we are having to deal with from the generations before us. It promises to be a long slog. Target date, end of June. Updates to come.
Happy New Year, everyone! What are your hopes for the coming year?