I step out into a blue sky and bright sunshine for a mid-day walk to English Bay. The crowds are gathering for the annual New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim and for the Carnival Band with its costumed stilt walkers and jugglers marching around mingling with the revelers who came to watch or participate. I stop and join the throng enjoying the performance of another band playing on a stage set up for the occasion, warming up the crowd for the event, including some who are dancing in bathing suits sweating in the cool air in front of the bandstand, preparing for their swim in the ocean, before continuing my walk along the seawall squinting into the morning sun.
I am happy to be leaving my work behind and to be able to focus my attention on the only thing I have the power to create and to create with. I spend the afternoon, what remains of it, clearing away the notes that remain from last year and the chapter I am leaving behind, and make a mental note to respond to the people I encounter with a contribution to their experience in appreciation for their contribution to mine.
In the evening I wander down to Provence Marinaside for a glass of wine and some merguez sausages at the bar to listen to the jazz trio playing, where I am approached and meet Melinda who has left her job in the corporate world and is enjoying her retirement as a cashier at a grocery store, and her husband Mark who is creating a system for mortgage brokers as he leaves full-time employment, and Clyde who is developing and supporting software for new financial systems for the banking world. I am not alone.