Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Farewell 2013, Hello 2014!

It had been a difficult year for Filipinos this 2013 as natural disasters - with floods, earthquakes and the biggest typhoon to ever hit the planet - and pork barrel scams but, it was also a year where our inner strength was tested and prevailed.

It was also a beautiful year with many Filipina candidates getting to the top five, if not, winning international beauty titles: Miss World, Miss International, Miss Universe, Miss Supranational, Miss Earth and the last one - held today, 31st December, the Miss Tourism International.

In my small corner of the world, I look back at 2013 and feel thankful that I was blessed with more good things than bad; enjoyed more happy moments than sad and had been healthier, richer and glad.  I only hope 2014 would be better and that my family and I continue to receive abundance, joy and good health this coming year.

I've bought the traditional 13 round fruits for our table and will assemble them when I get home.  I've got to prepare food for the Noche Buena tonight and I've got lots of round, meaty, rich things on our table.  Then there are the sweet stuff - to ensure life's sweetness, I guess - ready to be served after our meal.

The house has been vacuumed and new sheets are on the beds, pots and pans are ready to be banged to drive out evil spirits and welcome the new year in.  Even my car had gotten a full tank to make sure it is "full" as the new year arrives.  Meanwhile, my pre-teen is excited to jump at the beginning of the new year to ensure she grows a few inches more in the coming year.

A sweet bubbly is ready for the toast to our good health, and pockets have been filled with notes and coins to ensure prosperity as well as good fortune in 2014.

Tonight we will open the hopes and wishes we have sealed when 2013 came in to see if we have accomplished what we have planned out and write a new batch of wishes and targets for the new year.  This has been a tradition in our family and one we continue to do as it helps us evaluate the past and aim new plans for the future.  We always have a good laugh at what we had set out to do at the beginning of the year and the reality of whether we have indeed done it or not and why so.

I think of loved ones who have moved on or gone ahead and wish they are happy wherever they are.  I think of loved ones and friends in bad situations and pray they have better ones as the new year comes.  I think of loved ones who are in good places and wish they have more to share next year.  I remember friends from long ago and recent times and wish them and their families well.

Another year to get older, wiser, kinder.  Another chance to laugh more, read often, forgive.  Another time to meet new people, keep in touch with the old and learn new things.  I am afraid and excited of what the new year will be but I hope it will be a year with more celebrations of joy and love and peace all year-round.  Happy New Year to us all!

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