The new year after the fesitivities are over

Here we are now – in a new year which is before us like a piece of unwritten paper that is waiting to be filled with content. We have our  good resolutions for the new year, maybe or not.  And now, after the parties it mixes: The expectations of the new year and the hang-over.

If you live in a country where christmas is celebrated and where the differences of the light of the day are several hours between December and June, and where you have got both cold winters and warm summers, the following might be familiar to you.

Well, the lights in the streets become less. No more christmas and after New Year the decorative lights that shine out through the windows of homes decrease in numbers significantly. Like on many first days of the year, there is no sun to be seen. Outside it is grey and cold and the air is moist. Now this is less of a problem, however, as it is past 5.30 p.m and it is dark outside anyway.  God bless those of you who live in a warmer climate!

And January is the month that feels the longest of the year. The darkness recedes slowly and on grey sundays you feel particularly down somehow.  Initially, you may have liked it. After the summer you feel snug and cosy at home, doing and enjoying your indoor activities that range from playing games with your family, fixing things in your home, doing things on the computer or in the Internet or watching TV.

Now in January, a new year has come which lies ahead of us like the quoted empty sheet of paper.  I start feeling grumpy about this, it really feels grey and dark. I sense the darkness around me stronger, and even the light does not help too much.  It is a silent period of the year, and indeed the Bavarians refer to it as the „stade Zeit“ („silent time“ in their dialect.) Especially sunday afternoon is not a part of a day which you use for activities of your liking, but rather the (half)day before monday.

What great time was it when I have spent these times in Indonesia and Malaysia. No trace of this kind of New Year or January blues. The sun was shining like usual and 1st of January seems to be a normal working day. (Oh, I do not mind to have a day off, on the other hand…)

Next step in the run-up for the brighter days will be carnival which is held in February or early March. Then, at least here in Central Europe, March is the month of transition. It may be very winterly at the beginning and be in full springtime at the end. (In Northern Europe, even April resembles more a winter than a springtime month). Then the street cafés are open and it is in March that I take my bicycle and start my long rides which I love so much.

How do you perceive the changing of the year and the first months of it in your countries, climates and cultures?

Greetings from Frankfurt upon Main.


Über oneofhere

Man, born 1967, living in Germany, who likes to interact with people from all over the world. My hobbies and interests are languages, travelling, photographing, writing and Eurobilltracking. More will follow, either here or / and in my blogs.
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4 Antworten zu The new year after the fesitivities are over

  1. ashokbhatia schreibt:

    In India, one welcomes winter, with the obvious dread that a harsh summer is not too far off. So, we enjoy it as much as we can!

    • oneofhere schreibt:

      Thank you, dear ashokbhatia. Interesting to compare perspectives across borders, continents and climate zones. As our summers are much milder, compared to India (or parts of it), we do not perceive winter as something too much enjoyable. The period is dark with complete darkness at 5.15 p.m. in Frankfurt. Today, it was rainy, wet-cold and grey, just abhorrent. But well, in eight weeks we will expect springtime – the days will be much longer then and yes, very few are the summers here that we would call „harsh“ (In our understanding over 33-34°C for days and weeks on end. In 2003 it was up to 41°C – a new record in our meteorological history. )

      • ashokbhatia schreibt:

        Yes. Winters tend to become somewhat claustrophobic. In 2014, during July, temperatures had touched 31-32 deg C in Norway. We from India were fine, enjoying sleeping without blankets etc, but poor natives were having sleepless nights. One is amazed at the capacity of the human physical body to get used to ambient temperatures prevalent at the places it lives in!

  2. oneofhere schreibt:

    This is very interesting, dear ashokbhatia! We were in Finland in July / August 2014. Even in Rovaniemi at the arctic circle temperatures went over 30 °C. We could not sleep at night as the homes in Northern Europe are made to keep the warmth in – that is their main problem due to the cold climate. So although we had the windows open at night we have swet terribly, more than in Southeast Asia. Also the church was unbearable, although fans were running.

    Nevertheless we were glad. The other extreme – no sun but rain and cool temperatures – happen much more often in Northern Europe than an overheated summer with sunshine all around the day.

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