Farewell … and … we’ll see

We saw out the last few days of 2020 in a mostly relaxed mode. My wonderful yoga teacher offered a class early morning on the 30th, which was very well attended. All kinds of twists and balances to ready us for the new year.

Mornings have been very cold here (well, cold for us – at zero or slightly below). Long walks with the dog once the frost cleared. The plants don’t look overjoyed, but the daffs and bluebells are starting to poke their noses up. I made a cannoli pound cake on NYE.

On Thursday evening, we ventured into ‘town’ to pick up burgers and fancy sides from the gourmet burger place. On the way home we noticed this huge yellow full moon hanging low in the sky. A commentary on the year to come?

Clearly there was an abundance of worry and sadness for many in 2020. For me, the two things that stand out are the death of my ex-husband (from Covid after surgery for another issue), who was a genuinely good person even if we weren’t good together; the other was the development of a health issue for me which has meant significant changes – some major, some minor.

There were some positives as well in all this: a sort of enforced slowing down, which meant I made myself really be in my small world; work on the house was completed (with us now having, after 7.5 years here, a modern, dry, warm, pleasant place to live where crawly things no longer appear early morning from between the floor boards after wet nights); that my yoga teacher made the ongoing effort, offering classes that were varied, interesting, and frequently seemed to intuitively provide exactly what I needed on a given morning (“how did she know my left hip needs attention????”).

1 January meant leftovers from NYE meal and the UK out of the EU. I will simply say this makes me sad.

I am an optimist by nature (2020 tried this sorely) and I’ve been thinking about some basic things to look forward to this year. I don’t make resolutions. This is simple hopefulness on display.

First off is the vaccine. Science and human ingenuity at their finest (did you do know that Dolly Parton helped finance the Moderna one – yet another reason to love her). Not one, but a number of possible options are becoming available which potentially point to getting the pandemic under control.

Second, and referring to the above, I hope to return to yoga in the studio with other yogis maybe in the second half of the year. Yoga is my mental and physical anchor.

Third, I am hoping the local outdoor pool, which was closed for the 2020 season, will be able to open back up in May and I’ll be able to join the Nutters’ club (adult lane swimming early mornings).

Fourth, I hope to finally visit The Lost Gardens of Heligan in Cornwall (https://www.heligan.com/). A visit has been in the back of my mind for years. Time to make that a reality. (Here’s what the website says about the place: “Heligan is one of the most mysterious estates in England. Lost to the brambles of time since the outbreak of WW1, this Sleeping Beauty was re-awakened in 1990 to become Europe’s largest garden restoration project. Today Heligan’s 200 acres are a paradise for the explorer, wildlife, plant lover and garden romantic”. Sounds pretty awesome.)

Finally, I look forward to travelling by train. I love train travel in this country (my ex once told me that train stations here used to be called cathedrals of the industrial revolution) – and in Europe – and we have plans, which I hope will come to fruition in the next couple years, to do a ‘Grand Tour’.

My fragrance for the last few days of 2020 and the first day of 2021 has been Le Labo Ylang 49 from a sample my son bought me for Xmas. I had tried this several times, but for whatever reason this iteration has really stuck. Somehow (perfume alchemy?) this is both very hot and slightly cool (vague notes list: ylang, gardenia, patchouli, oakmoss, vetiver, benzoin and sandalwood). Go figure. In any case I’m stuck on it.

No happy new year from me. I see no reason to trust it yet. Rather, wishes for a good, sane, productive and safe 2021.

  • Dina C. says:

    Lovely post Cinnamon. I like your clear-eyed, realist’s view of the upcoming months and your hopeful plans for the days ahead. We watched two good movies on NYE, both with great soundtraks: Grosse Point Blank (alternative 80s music), and O Brother, Where Art Thou? (bluegrass and gospel music) while sipping some French champagne and relaxing in our own home. I spent the weekend un-decorating, and now I’m swinging into my annual decluttering and organizing mode. Have a good first week of 2021 everyone!

    • Cinnamon says:

      Thank you. Is un-decorating moving on from holiday stuff? I did a lot of decluttering when the work on the house started. I don’t miss what got offloaded, though I don’t currently have a TV. We watch stuff on the computers, but sometimes I think maybe later in the year I’ll get another telly… Maybe.

  • Jennifer S says:

    I would eat your cannoli pound cake while strolling through that wonderful sounding garden for sure!
    Nice that your place is feeling homey. So important now to realize every blessing!
    We are still way off axis on the getting back to normal in the New Year. I’m adopting a wait and wait some more attitude for now.

    • Cinnamon says:

      I love cannolis but they are very hard to get here. Thus, the pound cake. Not the same, alas. I think your approach makes complete sense. Absolutely!

  • Cinnamon says:

    Well, knock me over with a feather. Comments appear to have taken this time.

  • Musette says:

    What March Said about your post being ‘oddly cheering and hopeful’. I could feel my BP dropping, just reading it. Wishing everyone health, happiness and contentment in 2021 and beyond. xoxoxo

  • Cinnamon says:

    Ack. I replied to everyone and my replies have disappeared. Busy work day. Will try again later.

  • March says:

    This was … oddly cheering and hopeful, so thanks. Here’s to a better 2021.

  • Ariel says:

    That garden sounds lovely. I hope you get to be back in the pool soon 🙂

    • Cinnamon says:

      The pool is amazing. In years past, you could swim on NY Day and get soup as well. A great thing to do. I think I will have to do an illustrated post once I make it to Heligan 🙂

  • Tara C says:

    I’m with you on not wishing a happy new year as who knows what awaits us. But may it be one of health and prosperity.

  • Portia says:

    Welcome to 2021 Cinnamon,
    I love yoga when I can get myself motivated to go. The last long term partner I had’s father is a breath yogi, quite famous in India. His son (my ex) was following in his footsteps until his knees gave out. It was a bummer.
    I think there’s a sample of Ylang 49 around here somewhere. If I come across it I’ll give it a squirt in your honour.
    Portia xx

    • Cinnamon says:

      That’s too bad on your ex’s knees. I find that the more I do yoga the more motivated to do it I am. If I take a week off it’s much harder to push myself back in. Indeed, hoping 2021 improves as it goes along.

  • carole says:

    What a fantastic post! Is that your yoga teacher, and is that her dog? Fabulous idea, taking dogs to work 🙂 I teach yoga and I try to keep things interesting for the students. Collectively we worked on the psoas muscles during the last two classes of the year, and this is a muscle that really intrigues me. I’m glad you have your classes to keep you steady and I hope you get to visit that garden this year. I also hope you’ll maybe post some pictures of it 🙂

    I had something nice happen on New Year’s Eve: I had entered a contest and the prize was a sample set of the April Aromatics fragrances-and I won:) Ended the year on a high note.

    Cheers to you for 2021.

    • Cinnamon says:

      No, not my teacher, though her cats help out sometimes (and one of them once played a bit of piano for us). One of my fave things is supported bridge with a block under the base of the spine. For some reason I find that incredibly relaxing. And great you won fragrance. A good way to start the year.

  • Maggiecat says:

    I’m also dealing with some health issues, but optimistic about being able to travel later this year and looking forward to retirement. Wearing Chanel for all the usual reasons. Wishing you the best in 2021!

  • filomena813 says:

    I like Le Labo Ylang-Ylang 49 quite a lot. Enjoy it and Happy New Year!

    • Cinnamon says:

      I don’t get why I didn’t love it the first few times I tried it. Who knows. Better late than never. Best NY wishes to you.