It is past nine on the first evening of 2012.
I have wined and dined on a sumptuous meal, and in a short while, the holiday haze will fade, and the business/work side of life will resume. My young brother has been advocating for me to join the family in a game of Scrabble, but I still haven't recovered from the thrashing I received during the last game where, believe it or not, my final four letters spelled p-o-r-n, yet I couldn't do much with them on the game board. So I plead disinterest and escape to the kitchen and promptly put a mix-tape of songs by Kojo Antwi on instead. When he finds me a short while later crooning to my all-time favorite of the songs - wo do yi ye nsa - he's unimpressed, to say the least. I, on the other hand, am on another level. I love that song too much. (Last summer, my cousin had to endure several replays of wo do yi ye nsa on a drive from Colombus to Athens, Ohio). The title is such a colloquial expression in Twi that I struggle to come up with a fitting equivalent in English - the closest I can think of is, 'If your love was a drink, I'd get drunk on it' (Better translations welcome)
It's either the music gives wandering to my thoughts, or because the start of any new year finds said thoughts hovering somewhere in the stratosphere anyway, with renewed hopes, plans, ideas..and then some. But, like anyone else, I am in an expectant mood. I can't wait to see what this year has up its sleeve for me, for you..and for this city, because - insert excited scream here, and drum roll to the sound of Fontomfrom - 2012 is shaping up to be one heck of an unforgettable year! Off the top of my head I can think of a few light, entertaining moments, though, not limited to London (and I use the words 'light' and 'entertaining' loosely):
CAN 2012/Euro 2012 - Did you know I have a side career as an armchair commentator during football games?
Upcoming films - The Hobbit, Peter Jackson's epic fantasy prequel to The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, The Avengers, a testosterone galore of a crossover of well-known superheroes - Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor and Captain America - and, in a few days, Iron Lady, Meryl Streep's interpretation of former boss lady, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. And many, many more.
The Queen's Diamond Jubilee - On Christmas Day, I flicked on the television and for the first time watched the Queen's address to the nation on BBC1. Caught on the hop, with a finger of ripe plantain in my hands, I stood in front of the television, a little transfixed as her ten-minute address covered everything from her grandchildren's weddings last year (Prince William/Kate Middleton, and Zara Phillips/Mike Tindall) to the floods in Australia. This year, she celebrates 60 years on the throne, which is remarkable in itself. A pageant, a floatilla, and an extra bank holiday - not a bad mix, eh?
Fashion - I will most probably be resurrecting chunky heels this year! (Nowhere near a fashionista, but something tells me I already found my summer sole mate)
Music - Amy Winehouse, one of the music greats of our generation, shocked the world with her untimely death in July. In the days after, it was commonplace to be accosted by someone asking for directions to the singer's house, the Camden home where fans from all over the world gathered for days to grieve her passing. Her music lives on. This year, three ladies I hope will soar higher are Emeli Sande, X Factor finalist Amelia Lily and Lana Del Ray, of the hauntingly voiced song, Video Games
London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games - Need I say more?
There will be elections and medical breakthroughs; global economic talks and technological advancements; discussions on the mundane and endless speculation from some quarters on the ancient Mayan calculation that the world will end on 21st December 2012.
There will be plenty to talk about, for sure.
But I'll stop here. Besides, Kojo Antwi is now singing medofo pa, and I may take a while to descend from the optimistic high I get from the giddy realization that a new year has dawned, and with it, a fresh anointing for greater works.
Happy new year to you and yours.