And what will 2022 bring, I wonder?

We’ll not remember 2021 fondly – as I wrote in last week’s Christmas cards!

It was a year of frustrations; interrupted work or school, little chance of travel, loss of the familiar patterns which none of us realised at the time were fundamental to our daily rhythms and mental health; and for some, illness, fear, loss and bereavement.

So – how to tackle 2022? Along with many other people, I’ve realised three things:

  • It’s no good waiting for things to get back to normal – they won’t
  • though I’m not entirely sure what ’mo-jo’ is, I’ve certainly lost mine
  • a positive attitude doesn’t happen by accident

And in response to these little epiphanies, I am embarking on a new project – despite knowing that new year resolutions are usually doomed to fail.

It started modestly. I have always been spellbound by the sight of trees in winter, whether in urban or rural settings. North Hampshire has large remnants of ancient woodland forming an arc from Chute to Harewood; the silhouettes of field trees are spectacular in winter sunshine; the winter willow wands burn orange by the chalk streams, and the public spaces of much-maligned Andover boast stunning examples of both exotic and native species. There is no shortage of material to study.

So far, so good. A tree a week feels manageable – that’s the good news.

The bad news? My run-away ambition and (David would say) lack of realism has already latched onto all kinds of other possible one-a-week topics: how about a piece of music? a book? a poem? a bird? a place? a person?

Mmm.. seven topics, each week, for 52 weeks… yes, 364…(just one day off?)

But who writes rules? And who says they can’t be changed? We’ll see!

[10 Feb 22: POSTSCRIPT: new rule – fortnightly blogs! Only 182 topics from now]

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