We’re in a new year and a new decade. One hundred years ago we had the Roaring Twenties but there’s no telling what the 2020s will be like. We come at these new beginnings with hope, optimism, cheer and good wishes for all. My hope is that these good feelings will last longer than a week.
The Yankee Swap Party
Both hope and optimism surged last night at an annual Yankee Swap party. When it was my turn, I picked a golden package of Ferrero Rocher chocolates. As I don’t eat candy (just don’t like it), I swapped for a box of maple syrup. Those three bottles of high-quality, fruit-flavored maple syrup were in my hands for about 10 minutes before someone else swapped them for what they picked. I ended up with a wine aerator (???) and a set of those little things you put on wineglasses at parties so they don’t get mixed up.
It could have been worse. The gifts got stranger.
My husband picked a bag with three flavors of salt and a grinder. He swapped that for lottery tickets and a jar of orange marmalade. Hope surged and we were optimistic for a while until someone took that gift in exchange for their bottle of—wait for it—peanut butter whiskey.
We don’t drink hard liquor and, even if we did, I doubt we would drink that. Does anyone drink that? Maybe I can cook with it. How about a peanut butter whiskey cake?
Hindsight and the Year in Review
At this time next year, all the newspapers and magazines will have year-in-review articles with the exact same headline: “2020 Hindsight.” I thought of it first—and 12 months in advance, too.
In fact, I’m going to do some hindsight right now on posts I wrote in November and December of last year. I never did a roundup of November’s blog posts so this is a twofer. You get the roundup of all the November-December 2019 posts.
Roundup of November-December 2019 Posts
Boston and History
- Boston’s Calf Pasture Pumping Station – Aline
- Boston’s Doors: The Dickens Door – Aline
- Boston’s Flour and Grain Exchange – Aline
- Henchman Street in Boston’s North End – Aline
- Looking for Boston’s Homeless People – Aline
- Boston’s Missing: Partisans and Starved Horses — Aline
Business and Technology
- Watch Out for Fake Reviews — Susanne
- The Rise of the Boring Hero – Aline
- Why Are the Oscar Odds Already Out? — Aline
- Christmas Magic in Department Store Windows — Aline
- A Thanksgiving Post with All the Fixings – Aline
- Fannie Farmer: A New England Thanksgiving — Aline
Lifestyle and Culture
- On My Mind: December 30th 2019 – Susanne
- News from the #MeToo Front – Aline
- Giving Fatigue in the Season of Giving – Susanne
- The Impeachment Process Explained – Susanne
- Hunger in America – Susanne
- The Black Friday Effect — Susanne
- Anam Ċara: Soul Friend – Susanne
- A Lesson on Fear and Its Impact – Aline
- Balancing Negative Emotions – Susanne
- Designing a Good Death — Susanne
If you have fallen behind, this roundup should keep you busy for a while. And if you like any of these posts, please feel free to Like and Share, retweet and pass along to friends and family you think would enjoy them, too.
Looking Ahead to 2020
Now I’m going to sit in front of the fire and read for a while myself. Minus a shot of peanut butter whiskey.
We have a lot to look forward to this year, not least of which is another Viking River Cruise. This one goes from Basel, Switzerland, to Amsterdam on the Rhine River. I love having travel to look forward to.
There will be holidays, anniversaries and birthdays. I anticipate a very busy tour season. So far, at least, it’s all good.
Happy New Year to all my readers and contributors.