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New Years. New beginnings or Old continuations?

December 28, 2010

We’ve survived yet another decade past our supposed doom, the millennium. That’s what the optimistic believers say. But no, the pessimistic believers will say, we’ve ventured closer to our doom, 2012, according to the Mayan Calendar. Either way, pessimistic or not, believer or not, another year has indeed passed and coiled back to the depths of history.

It is the common practice of the western civilization to join hands and chant the tune of “Auld Lang Syne” together to celebrate the commencement of a new year.  Though it is not a practice I adhere to personally, as a local of Hong Kong, I find it very thought-evoking.

“Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind ?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and old lang syne ?”


“We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine ;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since auld lang syne.”

(excerpts from Auld Lang Syne by Robert Burns)

I find Christmases and New Years dreary. I am not the poetic type that reminisces the past that often, nor am I the type that dwells on what wasn’t and what isn’t instead of what was and what is. But the recurring appearance of the song in Christmas and new year themed movies that are televised during the season would often compel me to contemplate on the theme of friendship.

How many friends have we forsaken this year?
How many friends have we demoted because of our new environment or new circumstances?


How many friends forsook us this year?
How many friends demoted us because of their new environment or circumstances?

They say with a new year comes new beginnings, out with the old and in with the new. In the case of Auld Lang Syne, is it so? I feel that old traditions and conventions should get to stay with a new year. They are called “old friends” for a reason you know.

What do you say?

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