I really have to admit that, even as a child, I was not particularly fond of New Year's Day. In many respects, it seems to me to be a drab day with nothing to really make it special beyond being the first day of the year.
As a child much of the reason I disliked New Year's Day was that it was the last day of Christmas vacation, meaning that the next day would mean I would have to go back to school. Like many children, I did not particularly care for school and would have really preferred a few more days off. Of course, it also marked the end of the holidays. We would usually take down our tree and our lights on January 1 or January 2. Even then other people would take theirs down even earlier. After January 1 there would be no more Christmas trees, no more lights, no more holly and mistletoe--at least not until after Thanksgiving, which was literally months away. While I no longer go to school, I still dislike New Year's Day as the end of the holidays.
Of course, another problem I had with New Year's Day as a child was that overall it was a drab day. Growing up we only received four channels and it seemed as if nothing was on television for the entirety of the day. Oh, I would watch the Tournament of Roses Parade of a morning, although I must admit that even as a kid it was a tad dull. The afternoon was filled with college football, which really didn't interest me unless Mizzou was playing. At night there would be little more on television than reruns. Today I have cable, but there still doesn't seem to be very much on television. One would think that on the night of New Year's Day, the networks have some sort of special programming--some Hollywood blockbuster, at least. Unfortunately, they don't. The cable channels do have marathons today, but I must confess I have already seen the majority of episodes of Monk and Law and Order.
As an adult I must also confess that much of my dislike of New Year's Day also stems from the number of New Year's Days I have spent hungover. While I did not do so the past few years, there was a time like many when I would spend New Year's Eve drinking heavily. As a result I would often awaken the next day with a hangover that would take all day to recover from. I eventually concluded this was not the best way to open the New Year.
I must also admit that I dislike New Year's Day because it is the beginning of January. For me January is one of the blandest months of the year. Nothing much really goes on during all month. And while the month is sometimes marked by snow, which I must admit to enjoying provided we don't get too much, in Missouri it is more often marked by ice storms. Of course, with ice storms nearly everything comes to a halt, not to mention that there have been a few times we have been without power.
I have often thought that we here in the United States should develop some sort of special traditions for New Year's Day, some different way of celebrating it instead of watching parades and football games, and recovering from hangovers. As it is, I feel as if we end the holidays with a whimper rather than a bang. I think that the Scots may well have the right idea. December 31 marks Hogmanay, a celebration beginning the night of December 31 and lasting through the morning of January 1 or sometimes January 2, which is observed as a bank holiday in Scotland. Not only are the holidays ended with a bang, but people are even given a day to recover from the celebration!
At any rate, I'll probably spend the day doing a little of nothing. And tomorrow I'll take down our Yuletide celebrations. I must admit I won't be happy about it, but then there is always next year.
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