"Our true home is the present moment." – Thich Nhat Hanh
Yes ... but only up to a point. People these days talk about "living in the moment." And mindfulness. Being somewhere without having to take a picture with your cell phone or a "selfie" to prove you were there.
I try to live in the moment. And yet there are things about 2015 that I already know will happen. Here are some of them:
In 2015, I will go to the LA Philharmonic at the Walt Disney Concert Hall eight times. We have a subscription. (I shall go to the LA Opera at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion four or five times, depending on next season's offerings.)
I will shop at Trader Joe's, twice a week.
I will watch the World Series (and most of the baseball playoffs) ... most of the NBA playoffs ... a lot of Wimbledon, the U.S. Open, the French Open, and other tennis ... a lot of boxing and MMA, hoping for a Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao fight finally ... some of the Stanley Cup games, reminding myself how much I love hockey ... and other odd sports. Maybe I will find some curling on some Canadian sports channel.
Every morning, I will walk up to the top of our driveway (we live on hilly land) and get the newspapers – The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Often I will wake up before the papers arrive, and I shall have to make two, three, four, even five trips outside before they get here. I like to read the papers with my breakfast. I will also get the mail from the mailbox six times a week.
Every day, I will make a list of my tasks and errands for the day, and I will derive great satisfaction from crossing off each completed item. (That's what you get when you've been married to a Virgo for more than forty years.)
I will see the great pianist Martha Argerich play in February. I'm really excited about this one. Argerich is as close to a living god as there is, and her playing thrills me. And since her recovery from cancer, every concert is a complete lovefest. She's going to play Schumann's Piano Concerto No. 2. with the LA Philharmonic. It will be religious. Unless she cancels.
I will deadhead my rose bushes on Monday when I remember to. I will clean my storm drains. I will put up and take down the Christmas lights and Christmas tree.
Thanks to the Tiny Goddess' Bucket/Basket List, I will visit Yosemite National Park for the first time in the fall. This will be huge: four nights at the Ahwahnee. I'm already planning the star-gazing, the hiking, the meals.
Speaking of Bucket Lists, I'll finally see Rosanne Cash this year. I've been a fan of her music since "Seven Year Ache" in 1981. To speak heresy, I like her music more than her father's. A concert of hers turned up, not too far away, and I jumped on some tickets. Rosanne's most recent album THE RIVER & THE THREAD (one of my excellent Christmas gifts) is one of the best of her career. I've seen some of her live set on the web – on Hardly Strictly Bluegrass and Lincoln Center webcasts – but it will be great to see her live.
I will do more research for my new book, with necessary infusions of fiction between.
I will do yoga three times a week.
I will eat lunch while flipping among MSNBC, Fox, CNN, and Maury Povich DNA shows. When all else fails, I'll watch a Tivoed "Rick Steves' Europe."
I will not floss enough.
I will listen to tons and tons of opera ... and tons and tons of Howard Stern.
I will have Thanksgiving and Christmas parties with my family. I don't know where yet: could be at our house, could be somewhere else. But I know that we'll be together somewhere, and that's pretty cool.
And to save the best things for last:
I will finish the first draft of my new novel. I'm a little more than halfway done. It could be really good; I don't want to screw it up.
I will spend time with the new love of my life, Calder Leigh Robinson – and the "old" love of my life, the Tiny Goddess.
And yet ... and yet ... with all these things known, I will be surprised by Life everyday in 2015. Every day will be unique and filled with small joys, big thoughts, and everything in-between.
I'm pretty lucky. I'll get to work on my book, full-time, unlike a lot of writers who work full-time jobs and have to cram their writing into weekends or evenings or early mornings. As Theodore Roosevelt said, "The best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing."
So I'll have another year to live and write. 2014 was extra-special with the Book and the Baby, but 2015 looks pretty good from here.