Monday, December 31, 2007

My Year of Living Dangerously

Vicki here, on the last day of the year.

I have been thinking for some time of writing a book (trying to write a book?) on my "Year of Living (not very) Dangerously". I realize that I am incredibly lucky, and pretty unique, in living in a time and a place where as a single woman I have the freedom to have done what I did this year. I’d like to explore that in a book, but I don’t know if I have enough material, and I’ve never written a non-fiction book before. That is something I’ll be devoting a lot of time in 2008 thinking about.

Freedom is a word that gets tossed around a lot, but this is what it means to me:

Freedom to be able to earn enough in your working life to look forward to a moderately comfortable retirement, without having to worry about starving or living in a box if you get sick in your old age, or your children can't afford to care for you, or all your investments fail.

Freedom to travel reasonably safely without having to worry that if you make a wrong turn, or meet the wrong people, or say the wrong thing, you're in trouble.

Freedom to travel the infrastructure placed there by your tax dollars and cared for and protected, for you, just because you're a member of the public.

Freedom to be meet people, and be welcomed by people, all sorts of people, and no one questions why you’ve decided to live the sort of life you live.

I’d say that 2007 was the best year of my life, so far. I was probably a pretty happy kid, but I didn't know I was happy so that doesn't count. And the years that my daughters were born were happy ones, but the happy times were interspersed with nights of crying-baby misery, so that knocks them out of the running. I suppose the first year I was married was pretty good - but it had its ups and downs. But in 2007 I went from one period of happiness to another. I retired in March (Mucho happiness) sold my house in May (could have been unhappiness, but I sold it in 5 days), and have been on the open road since. I drove most of the way across Canada, up to the Yukon and Alaska, down to California and Arizona (and then back), saw lots of amazing things and met some wonderful people. In between my travels I've been house-sitting in Nelson, B.C.: my favourite place. My house sits were all very different and all very wonderful, and, as a bonus, I made some good friends. I've made lots of friends in Nelson and have a busier social life than I ever did back in Oakville. My book tour in the fall was lots of fun, and I think, a big success. I finished a new book, and ideas for the next are happily percolating around in my head. My children are all well, and all gainfully employed.

So all I want for 2008 is as much fun as I had in 2007. And I wish you and yours the best, healthiest, and happiest of years as well.

P.S. My guest on Internet Voices Radio this week (Thursday, 8:30 PM Eastern time) will be Lyn Hamilton, author of the Lara McClintock Archaeological Series. Please tune in, if you can.

1 comment:

Rick Blechta said...

I've said it all along: you're a lucky SOB!