Ok. January looms ahead. Is it just me, or does it feel like January is the longest month of the year?
After all the hoopla of the holidays, January tends to be pretty quiet. You have pushed the reset button on the year and now it's time to get your life back to "normal." The visitors have left, your kitchen is relatively back in order and aside from Martin Luther King Day, not much to look forward to. I like to have something to look forward to on the calendar.
And I have nothing on the calendar until Valentine's Day.
Here is why I always see January as a big gray opaque month. It's a funny story. Kind of.
When I was in junior high school in Nebraska (that is another story), I remember getting up every morning in what I considered the middle of the night because it was dark until about 8 a.m. I would grab my Eggo waffle, bundle up in scarves and mittens, and put my plastic bags over my shoes so I could more easily slide on my overboots. I would trudge outside under the streetlights to catch the bus on frigid mornings to go to school.
After a long bus ride in near silence because everyone was still asleep, we would get off the bus and line up outside of the locked front doors of the cavernous school building. I had a friend who had swim practice every morning at 5 a.m. and he would stand with me in the gloomy dawn as we quietly waited and shivered together.
I watched his hair turn into long stiff icicles as we stomped our feet and rubbed our mittens together. Those mornings were torture. Eventually, the doors would open and we would rush into the warm, humid building. It was interesting how fogged up the two windows of the building would get with all those wet pre-teens swarming to their lockers. It kind of smelled like a combination of wet wool and wet dog.
Those long quiet January days inched along.
Luckily, things have changed. January doesn't loom so large anymore. In fact, everything is possible in January. In the Boulder area, we have more sunny days than San Diego so we can even golf in January. In fact, it's a perfect time to plan travel, go ice skating and learn how to make the perfect hot toddy. Plant some seeds and bulbs and put them in the window.
Resolutions have been made and perhaps broken, new horizons are waiting to be conquered – January has it all.
So, get out your ski pass, don't put your bike away, grab a friend and hit the trail. It's all ahead.