Now answer me this: how can my new year possibly get any happier than this?? Waking up to a new year without (much of) a hangover. The smell of fresh, strong coffee. And for breakfast, toasted wholewheat English muffins topped with cream cheese and smoked salmon. I always say that life isn’t about big things that happen and suddenly make us happy – it is about finding happiness in the small, everyday pleasures that we can all experience. Clean, fresh linen. A long bath. A phone call to a friend. The smell of hot popcorn. A cuddle from a pet. And smoked salmon muffins to brighten a winter morning. If this sets the tone for the rest of the year – bring on 2005!
As I mentioned, we kicked off our New Year’s celebrations with dinner at the apartment of a friend of mine who lives near Tower Bridge. Five of us dined on tuna and mackerel pate, followed by roast lamb in a juniper and garlic glaze (I may be forgetting a vital ingredient or two here – it was a long night…) and finished off by individual chocolate mousses topped with fresh cherries and brandied cream. Rather a lot of red wine was consumed – the only one I remember well was a South African KWV Pinotage which was smooth and jammy and delicious, and a perfect match for the lamb. Just before midnight we all grabbed champagne glasses and a bottle of bubbly and headed for the bank of the Thames. The night was clear and mild (for December, that is!); Tower Bridge and the Tower of London were beautifully lit and there were fireworks going off everywhere as we toasted in the new year – a perfect London moment. Yes, I was wearing my Bunny-ears of Happiness. No, I wasn’t morose for a second.
To all readers of CookSister! – HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope you had a great party on Friday night and made many worthy resolutions that you can enjoy breaking later in the year (I know that’s what I’ll end up doing!). And I hope that you all have a safe, happy and healthy 2005. Thanks for all your comments, e-mails and friendship – it’s been a great seven months and I look forward to many, many more.