Treading lightly the path to enlightenment.

Welcome the New Year!

Solstice Sun

A circle is one of the most common shapes in our Great Cosmos (silica-based crystal chain structures right behind), and it is today our New Circle begins. In my view, today begins the new year. As our almost-perfect circle planet revolves around its perfect-circle sun in a far-from-perfect ellipse of an orbit, the Winter Solstice marks the top of the curve. Now days begin to lengthen incrementally for the next six moons until we reach the opposite end of our rolling year, and the longest day of Summer Solstice.

This marks a point on my journey. Like returning to home port, or passing the same old oak on a favorite trail. It is an ending and beginning in a single stroke. It is a benchmark, a touchstone, a point along a very long line when I make a hash mark as I hurtle past. There’s a slight thrill seeing the 57 past hash marks, and a certain excitement as I reach out, take a swing, and hang on for another orbit, another grand circle in the concentric and overlapping circles that make up the life of an old Armchair Zen master.

Not only is the New Year commenced, but also the “official” season of winter. Life in a Northern Town takes winter in stride. Not only passively, but in tangible and active ways. The Yankee winter is an integral part of our lives. It serves a great purpose for those of us that will undertake the understanding of it. It’s a trial and a test and a testament to our spirits. Not just surviving winter, bit thriving within and through it.

Each year, our Earth sort of throws down a gauntlet. Each year, we rise to the challenge and pick it up. It’s not all about active young people oblivious to cold and snow, skiing the High Peaks and snowmobiling 27 miles up the frozen Sacandaga Lake. It’s about the everyday and the mundane. Firing furnaces, sealing up drafts, shoveling the steps. Getting out the “Let It Snow” box filled with hats and gloves and scarves and mittens. It’s about getting to work when it’s 18 degrees and there’s four inches of snow on the road and it’s forecast to fall all day. It’s about walking the dog and fetching the mail from the box, checking the car’s oil and unloading the wood pellets while frigid air tries to sneak in around your collar, while your fingers grow numb with cold.

And when winter is done, there’s more reward than the flowers of spring and the return of American Robins. Even for those that may be unaware, surviving and thriving through a Yankee winter reminds us of just how strong we are. A reminder that gives us the strength to carry on for another year, another wonder-filled lap around our atomic anchor.

I have a covenant with winter. A vow to honor and cherish and forsake all other seasons when she comes to call, all gleaming and silver. I welcome and embrace her with open arms. Revere her. Laud her beauty. In return, she brings me gifts.

A quadrillion snowflakes. Vast tracts of ice-covered ponds and lakes.

Glazed hoarfrost dawns and golden ice-ringed sunsets.

Birds, the color of summer flowers, blue and red, black and white and yellow.

Like the migrations of fall or tulips of spring, she returns faithfully each year to me. She covers me with her downy quilt and beckons me to slumber.

Yet within each hour are wonders, joys and beauties to behold. Adventures to seek as only Dear Winter can oblige.

She calls me forth from my den, to drink it all in.

Before it is gone.


Happy New Year, and Merry Christmas to those that observe it.

May the peace of the Cosmos find you and keep you throughout the year.



Comments on: "Welcome the New Year!" (10)

  1. Thank you Paz and enjoy the magic 💜 A very blessed and Happy New Year to you too! ☺🙋‍♀️🎆


  2. It will not surprise you, that I too love the winter-of course a southern winter does not compare to yours. Southeners here complain anyway, but there is a beauty to winter that belongs to only that time. You have a grateful heart-that makes all the difference. Peace to you and may the winter be full of blessings. I enjoy the way you write, of things-like winter.


    • I realize afterward that the term “Yankee” could be interpreted in more than one way.
      My reference is to the northeast and New England (like Yankee Magazine).
      Mid-westerners and west-coasters have winters as hard- and harder.
      There’s a certain social philosophy to true Yankees, those born and raised at the place where the Atlantic meets the North Atlantic.
      Like the monthly journal entries in The Farmers’ Almanac.
      No better or worse than anyone else, but a unique colloquial “personality”, of plodding perseverance.
      (You’re right, of course, it does not surprise me that you love winter!)

      Best regards,


      Liked by 1 person

      • I had never thought about the fortitude it takes to go through a northern winter-True yanks must almost have a “pioneer spirit”. I may be guilty of using the term “yankee” in reference to all folks , north of Virginia! Now I know. I hope your winter is lovely.


        • Funny you mention “pioneer spirit”. I restrained myself from elaborating on the origin of the term “Yankee”. Supposedly, this was a mispronunciation of the word “English” by Native Peoples first greeting the European interlopers. “Yen-gee” was eventually smoothed out into “Yankee”.
          It is born of a period when pioneer spirit was essential.
          Beautiful winter, in its almost-savage manner, will not go unacknowledged.
          On the drive to work today it was seven degrees—below zero!

          Stay warm,


          Liked by 1 person

  3. Aman Thakur said:



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