New Year’s Resolution?

There are so many resolutions that could be made for the new year but I don’t really believe in them. You can only make a change when you’re ready to make that change and that readiness does not magically appear when a new year comes around. So, no new year’s resolutions for me. Sure, I probably should do something about weight loss but, in honesty, I’ve sort of accepted myself for what I am now. Losing weight is overrated, feeling happy with who you are and where you are is way more important. Recently, I came across this clip below and I love it so much, it pretty much sums it all up:

I’ve decided to track down the classic movie that this clip comes from (The Great Lie from 1941 with Mary Astor and Bette Davis). πŸ™‚

Of course, there are also more profound changes that can be made, and taking care of my mental health is an important part of that. I realize that in the past year I already made the change that was most necessary, with me finding a new job that I actually like and I’m still very happy with that choice! And yes, there are more things that I can or should change when the time is right (or simply learn to accept) but for now, I’m doing alright and my focus is more on others, as are my worries. The common denominator of it all is bascially the same resolution I have in my life in general anyhow, which is to act out of love: to do the best I can for those that I love, to try to make the world a better place in any tiny, small way that I can and to be kind to myself.

Viola Davis said something to a similar extent on her Instagram recently, which resonated with me…

To quote her succintly: “So…it’s my deepest prayer for 2023….more love. More bravery to love.” I wish that for everyone.

A sweet new year…

…that is always what one hopes for when a new year starts, despite all the ugliness that is out there. Right now the Jewish new year of 5783 is being celebrated.

I wish a Shana Tova to those who celebrate and may this new year be filled with moments of laughter and love that drives out all sorrow and malice.

Goodbye 2020

Ending this endless downer of year on a good note with watching Uncle Vanya again on BBC Four last night…

As I’ve already seen this twice in the theatre and once in the cinema not long ago, I admit to now and again simultaneously also reading on my new e-reader that I’ve fallen in love with. I’m reading the Bridgerton series right now and late last night finished book 3, book 4 is up next.

I did record Uncle Vanya so that I can view it again and again if I choose to. πŸ™‚

I’m not feeling particularly reflective today, so just looking ahead to the new year and a promise for better times. We’re ready here for the evening with the traditional Dutch ‘oliebollen‘ and ‘appelbeignets‘…

I hope you all have a nice New Year’s Eve!

Happy 2020 from Frankfurt!

Yesterday, on New Year’s Eve, Mr Esther, my mini-not-me daughter and I spent strolling through the center of Frankfurt. Mini-not-me is tired of Mr Esther’s and my preference for older looking towns, she wants to see modern skylines and buildings and such, so we stuck to the newer part of town. We all especially liked the Zeil shopping mall.

One store called Saturn stocked an amazing collection of cd’s and dvd’s, the likes you rarely see in The Netherlands anymore, where streaming online and digital copies are I think overtaking the cd and dvd collections. Mini-not-me found a collector’s item BTS cd + booklet she really wanted and I was amazed at how many classics were to be found on dvd. I took a trip down memory lane from when I lived in Germany in my teens, when we used to watch these shows on TV as a family (and bought myself an old Rock Hudson & Sidney Poitier movie I’ve never seen before)…

We strolled some more, then mini-not-me and I returned to the hotel for a rest as mini-not-me has been battling a flu, while Mr Esther went to the historical museum.

Our experience last year in Hamburg had taught us that it would be good if we reserved a restaurant for New Year’s Eve dinner. A few weeks ago we had called a few restaurants and finally found a spot at an Italian one that we thought would be nice. On the phone at the time they told us they only served a special standard New Year’s Eve menu and we said fine and didn’t think anything of it. When we arrived at the restaurant at 7 pm we felt slightly under dressed as it all looked fancy. We were welcomed with champagne…


…Β  they only served wine per bottle (not per glass) and the courses started coming. There were six (!) courses in all! Halfway through the evening we figured out the actual standard menu price per person (hadn’t thought to ask beforehand) and as the fancy courses started coming we figured it would probably cost a pretty penny. We were right, it did cost a pretty penny, probably close to what our hotel stay was costing us. Oops! Honestly, though, we just laughed it off. Our own fault for not asking more details in advance and the dinner and all the courses (mostly marine-themed) were absolutely delicious! We figured, what the heck, we’d just enjoy it and that we did. It was long, though, we sat there for close to 4 hours!

We then walked down to the river and crossed one of the bridges to the other side of town (just outside the main party area, an area that was too busy for us to want to brave). A lot of fireworks were already going off but we found a nice spot at the end of the bridge, near police and security, where we felt safe enough to stand and enjoy the fireworks that were already lighing up some of the Frankfurt skyline.

Then at midnight all hell broke loose with people setting off their fireworks. Seriously, I think I have rarely stood in the middle of such a mighty fireworks explosion before.

I made some gifs from the small video I made, you’ll just have to imagine the deafening noise along with it!

It was a little scary but also exhilirating and beautiful at the same time, despite the air polution and the garbage. The atmosphere was festive and not grim, which was also cool. Things calmed down relatively quickly, I found, and we were back in our hotel rooms by one am.

This morning we slept in a bit, took it easy at the hotel after breakfast and then in the afternoon, in glorious albeit cold weather, we walked down to the beautifully reconstructed Alte RΓΆmer area. We first went to the river hoping to secure tickets for a Main river cruise at the end of the afternoon (the website had said the cruise was also available on Sundays and Feastdays), only to find that there were no cruises on New Year’s Day. And yes, the trash in the picture was trash from the night before. Wow.

We then visited the cathedral where Mr Esther had hoped to go on a guided tour only to find that the tour had been cancelled for the day. Oh well, we enjoyed looking around anyway and Mr Esther was able to photograph some coats of arms as well (his hobby is heraldry).

We walked through the Alte RΓΆmer area…

… but couldn’t find many cafΓ©s open for tea and cake. We finally did find the cafΓ© at the Hauptwache open (closer to the modern part of town) to round off our afternoon. We had another little hotel rest after (mini-not-me is still not feeling great), then dinner at an Italian fastfood kind of place (cheap, compensating nicely for the evening before) and then went on another evening stroll around town.

Tomorrow we head back home again. Our son, who’s been at home working and celebrating New Year’s with friends, has also come down with the flu, poor thing! He’s never ill and I hate that we’re not near him while he’s feeling bad. He did go in to work today but left a bit early and is now crashed at home. Luckily he is free tomorrow and can hopefully recuperate a bit. And apparently I mind him being on his own more than he does. πŸ™‚

Before we leave tomorrow (or really, later today – I see it’s 1 after am now!) we want to go up one of the towers for an overview over the city (also closed today). Despite stuff being closed it’s been a great few days and it was nice having mini-not-me to ourselves for a bit. She really liked Frankfurt, by the way, and says this will be a trip she will always remember fondly. That makes my heart very happy in this new year. We’ve started 2020 well (despite illnesses) and I hope you have too!

Happy 2019!

Wishing you all a Happy New Year from Hamburg!

Pics aren’t so great (taken with our phones) but you get the idea. πŸŽ‰

Best wishes and may 2019 be a good year for you all.