2011 – for a’ that

Holy fuck, it’s only gone and arrived. A new year, a new decade, my dad has breached the 60-year barrier, it’s all gone horribly wrong. So what’s happening, what’s going on?

Well first off, we must bid adieu to 2010; a year to remember indeed. It was the year in which I finally discovered a job, a career, a way of earning money while doing something which I don’t actively despise. The feeling during my current sabbatical of ‘missing’ work is something entirely alien and utterly refreshing. Vietnam and all its promises can’t come soon enough – I need to be teaching again as soon as possible.

The past year was also that in which I discovered just what true love means. Love above and beyond any petty differences in age, culture, religion, anything whatsoever – love which truly knows no bounds. Unfortunately that love came to an end but who knows, perhaps the coming year will bring a second chance.

And as for the new year itself, what  lies on the horizons, what hopes, dreams and resolutions? Well, there are intentions, and I can but do my best to see them through to fulfillment. I’ve once again quit smoking, but this time is going to be the last – no more relapses, no more excuses. On that note, I’m considering knocking the booze on the head for a good long while in the interests of being able to A) meet the 100 push-up challenge and B) tackle a marathon.

Oh, and I’ll be in Viet-frickin-nam. Honestly I’m completely charged with excitement at the thought of meeting a new class, getting to know them, forgetting how to teach and remembering how to do it again within a few minutes – I’m just fucking psyched to get back to it.

There’s more as well – my brother’s wedding, another gig with my band, meetings with old friends, forming new friendships. And of course the whole plan could change massively depending on the outcome of a single reunion in Minneapolis in a few days time.

Whatever happens, if anyone reads this I wish you all the best for the coming year, and leave you with a blast of Burns which encapsulates all that I hope for our kin o’er this year and everything after:

Is there for honest poverty
That hangs his head, an’ a’ that
The coward slave, we pass him by
We dare be poor for a’ that
For a’ that, an’ a’ that
Our toil’s obscure and a’ that
The rank is but the guinea’s stamp
The man’s the gowd for a’ that

What though on hamely fare we dine
Wear hoddin grey, an’ a’ that
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine
A man’s a man, for a’ that
For a’ that, an’ a’ that
Their tinsel show an’ a’ that
The honest man, though e’er sae poor
Is king o’ men for a’ that

Ye see yon birkie ca’d a lord
Wha struts an’ stares an’ a’ that
Tho’ hundreds worship at his word
He’s but a coof for a’ that
For a’ that, an’ a’ that
His ribband, star and a’ that
The man o’ independent mind
He looks an’ laughs at a’ that

A prince can mak’ a belted knight
A marquise, duke, an’ a’ that
But an honest man’s aboon his might
Gude faith, he maunna fa’ that
For a’ that an’ a’ that
Their dignities an’ a’ that
The pith o’ sense an’ pride o’ worth
Are higher rank that a’ that

Then let us pray that come it may
(as come it will for a’ that)
That Sense and Worth, o’er a’ the earth
Shall bear the gree an’ a’ that
For a’ that an’ a’ that
It’s coming yet for a’ that
That man to man, the world o’er
Shall brithers be for a’ that


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