Happy 2012! Somehow I am always glad when one year ends and a new year begins. I guess I like beginnings. At the same time though, there is something really beautiful about the rituals that we bring the new year in with. I spent this year on 34th Street in Baltimore, it is the block that puts up an amazing array of holiday lights, an entire block that does it. It is incredible. Google "Miracle on 34th Street Baltimore" to see some images of the spectacle, but it will not do it justice. If you live in the city and have never experienced it, you will have to wait for next year. In any case on New Year's Eve, people take over this block, stand in the street and wait for a ball of lights to descend from a lamppost. This year I was one of those people and it was fantastic. 

So this year I will continue to enjoy new beginnings, but not at the expense of the traditions and rituals that make life deep and meaningful. A friend's mother commented that she and several of her friends had been having a holiday dinner for the last 29 years and said to us young folk that we should be starting these traditions. I heard her and have taken it to heart. I don't know if I will stand on 34th street and watch the ball drop every year that I am in Baltimore from here on out, but I will make sure to spend time with those that I love every year, doing things that will become our own rituals and traditions (and if this is standing on 34th street I will not complain). Cheers to the new and the old being able to occupy the same night! And happy new year.