New Year’s Eve saw hundreds of frenchmen protesting the coming of 2007. They urged world leaders across the globe to stop in their tracks, and keep the clock ticking in the last few seconds of 2006. We need time to think! we need time to live! they seemed to be shouting. But Time was as relentless as ever, and come midnight the last digit of the calendar flipped over once again. Back in France a new chant began. Hopefully 2008 is gonna be the year never to come.
Yesterday was the first of January, and I didn’t even have a hangover. I had tried really hard to have one, though. The previous night had been one big mix of beer, wine, champagne, spirits, strange liquers, and mead. Cigarettes, too. But nothing came of it. Not even the mildest of headaches.
So there I was. Sprawled on the bed like a waking corpse in a coffin. Outside the wheel had stopped turning. Wind was all that was blowing. And somewhere in the distance I could hear the faint creaking of tomorrow. The sensation was one of absolute horror. I junked all the tranquilizers in the world. I junked sleep, I junked tv, I junked junkfood. In the end I even junked my own wakefulness. Sitting up till five in the morning, shoulder pressed hard against the wheel of time, hoping for it at least to crush me when it started turning. And of course it did, and of course I fell asleep, and of course it just rolled plain over me like a ball of snow picking up everything in its way.
Today is a new day in a new year. My attempts at keeping the world outside at bay is getting feebler by the minute. Even out here on the homegrown little grounds off town people are venturing out of their huts and houses. They’re strolling the dirt roads of a dream marooned on a ship somewhere in their own backyard. I’m trying to keep my head down. I don’t have any curtains. But already my neighbour has spotted me. He waved at me when I was in the bathroom. I pretended not to see him, but not even that works any more. Not on the second of January. He’ll be over for a cup of coffee in no time.
And so it happens that even I have appointments to keep in the New Year. A few days from now I’m meeting up with a guy I’m guiding through the process of writing a roleplaying scenario. Then it’s an incognito job at a storytelling course that I’m supposed to start teaching later this year. And finally I’m taking a bunch of my stories to a sound studio to have them recorded and made downloadable for a small fee on the internet. And that’s only January. And that’s only what was already planned for last year.
2007 sure is gonna be one hell of a ride. You forgot to buy a ticket, too? Don’t worry. Once they’ve let you on, they’ll never let you off again. Only chance is unbuckling your belt, and taking a dive in the big loop somewhere around mid-june. If all goes well, see you there, see you mid-air.