I like the emotional cleanse that accompanies the ticking over of a new year. It is like we all get a fresh start and feel almost obligated to make changes to our lives. That’s what new year’s resolutions are all about, improvements and new ventures. I’ve never seriously continued a resolution of my own and it is widely known that resolutions tend to flake after a while. But I really admire people who can make a commitment to changing something about themselves and using a new year as a starting block is a great motivation.

This year I am going to challenge myself to increase the time that I already dedicate to interests and assignments and I am going to be more open to taking on new challenges.

For so long January 2013 has been a time marker for me as the month I finally get to take a big trip and take a break that is longer than 5 days. One week from today I will be on a plane on my way to Seoul. I can already taste the Kimchi.

Other than travelling I want to dedicate more time to writing this year. I feel as though I have made a big step forward in this avenue as 2012 saw me doing more writing than ever before and I’m incredibly happy with the amount of writing I completed last year. I feel very confident that I am fine tuning my work and I know it is because of the extra dedicated time I have put in recently.

This year I am going to speak more German!

I also really want 2013 to be the year that I catch up with more of my friends. It has been over one year since I saw the amazing girls that I met at the summer camp in South Korea in 2011 and we have stayed in regular contact since. But it is not enough anymore. It’s time for a face to face reunion. I am so excited to be able to say that I will be reuniting with some good friends in Seoul and New Zealand in less than six days.

And finally there is still my ‘A list’ which I haven’t paid enough attention to yet. As this spans from 2012 into the next three months it cannot honestly be called a new year’s goal but it is a goal nonetheless and New Zealand holds at least a few of those little missions to be ticked off.

I hope 2013 is already proving itself to be a great new year for you and has at least gotten you thinking about what you may like to achieve in the next twelve months.

Here is a poem for the weekend. ‘A Supermarket in California’ is by Allen Ginsberg one of my favourite figures of the beat generation. I love his quirky way of paying homage to two amazing and influential poets in this poem: Walt Whitman and Garcia Lorca.

A Supermarket in California
by Allen Ginsberg

What thoughts I have of you tonight, Walt Whitman, for
I walked down the sidestreets under the trees with a headache
self-conscious looking at the full moon.
In my hungry fatigue, and shopping for images, I went
into the neon fruit supermarket, dreaming of your enumerations!
What peaches and what penumbras! Whole families
shopping at night! Aisles full of husbands! Wives in the
avocados, babies in the tomatoes!--and you, Garcia Lorca, what
were you doing down by the watermelons?

      I saw you, Walt Whitman, childless, lonely old grubber,

poking among the meats in the refrigerator and eyeing the grocery
I heard you asking questions of each: Who killed the
pork chops? What price bananas? Are you my Angel?
I wandered in and out of the brilliant stacks of cans
following you, and followed in my imagination by the store
We strode down the open corridors together in our
solitary fancy tasting artichokes, possessing every frozen
delicacy, and never passing the cashier.

      Where are we going, Walt Whitman?  The doors close in

an hour. Which way does your beard point tonight?
(I touch your book and dream of our odyssey in the
supermarket and feel absurd.)
Will we walk all night through solitary streets? The
trees add shade to shade, lights out in the houses, we'll both be

      Will we stroll dreaming of the lost America of love

past blue automobiles in driveways, home to our silent cottage?
Ah, dear father, graybeard, lonely old courage-teacher,
what America did you have when Charon quit poling his ferry and
you got out on a smoking bank and stood watching the boat
disappear on the black waters of Lethe?

Posted in: JournalAnecdotes