This is the view from our playing fields, across some (empty) farm fields, towards the water treatment works aka the sewage works, and I thought it summed up 2020 perfectly:

  • The general shittiness of 2020 for so many people, and the now catastrophic ending to 2020 we in the UK are experiencing right now: as I type, we’ve just had new and drastic changes to rules regarding family contact at Christmas brought in suddenly and without warning; the border to France is shut, as are many air routes into the country, and I think we’re about to discover what it means to be an island that is not self-sufficient in food. And all just days before Christmas, during a pandemic, with the disruption and chaos of Brexit just round the corner. I’m not sure what else could happen to top that, but I’m sure there is something more shitty that could. Best not tempt fate!
  • We spent lots of time this year spent walking across these very fields, trespassing across them really, to extend our horizons as much as we could within the rules of lockdown, and to avoid passing too many “new” people who had suddenly discovered the great outdoors and had taken to walking around the playing fields. In fact, we’ve barely been elsewhere. This view has become our whole world, and it’s beginning to feel a little tired. As are we.
  • These fields are actually destined to be built over, and very soon – the bulldozers have already been busy for months on the other part of the empty farm land. So what little we have, won’t last. It’s just so 2020.
  • The rainbow – the symbol of support for our national health service throughout this year – does symbolise a hope for us all. The vaccine is being wheeled out to the first recipients – including my sister. And for some people – me included – the disruption of 2020 has brought about some positive change. This time last year, I had no idea that I would currently have two online courses running, with a third about to start in January. It’s only because of lockdown and all my events being cancelled that I actually got my act together and started to offer online courses.
  • When I took the photo, it wasn’t actually raining – the sky was a wonderful deep grey that I’m beginning to love, the rainbow was intensely beautiful, we have our health, and the time and ability to walk around the fields – these are all things to be thankful for. And I am immensely thankful to my students, all the wonderful ladies who have trusted me with their time and their money and taken my courses, and who have produced such astoundingly beautiful work. Thank you, one and all. I literally couldn’t have done it without you.

So tonight, we are celebrating Solstice, and the imminent end of 2020, and raising a glass of mead to you all.

Cheers! Here’s to a Merry Christmas, and a more hopeful 2021.