Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year

My preferred way to welcome the New Year is with a bit of music and dancing, like the Woodland Bear family pictured above, celebrating with a Round Reel of Eight. In past years a piper led us around the block at midnight and a young dark-haired stranger was invited to be the first over the threshold on our return.

Every year on January 1 we go for a walk
along to the park, where crowds gather
to watch this celebration of the New Year:

2010 is the 25th anniversary of the Polar Bear Dip here at Coronation Park, hundreds line up to run into the freezing waters and the more normal thousands of us line the shore to cheer them on.Since 1995 the funds raised go to World Vision Canada, this year in support of water projects in Kahi, Rwanda.Most mortal dippers make the plunge and then beat a hasty retreat to the shore and their towels and blankets. The occasional naiad seems unconcerned,

and for others it's just a regular walk in the park.

No polar bear myself, I'll stick to dancing.
Wishing you all a safe, happy and sometimes magical year.


  1. Happy new year!
    What brave people taking the plunge. I think I would expire on the spot.
    Love the photos of your dog!
    Came to you via The House of Edward.

  2. Happy New Year to you! We have those brave/crazy Polar Bear contingents here in NYC. I don't know if ours jump into the Atlantic, just off the Brooklyn coastline, in aid of a cause, or just for the sheer ... could it be fun, of it.

    I do like the image of following the piper, and having that young visitor.

    And, your image of the dancing bear is best of all!

    If you have not already done so, please do treat yourself to the various posts of Elizabeth, who's commented just before me. She is a delight, on the screen and in person.


  3. How exciting Frances! So you don't make the plunge? Well that sweet fluffy and wet dog takes the plunge for both of you!Love the bear's dancing...charming! xx

  4. Mad dogs and Englishmen indeed, I cannot think of anything more unpleasant than to plunge into freezing cold water. I would like the dancing though! Happy New Year Frances, I look forward to visiting here in the coming months.

  5. Oh those Polar Bear swimmers are far braver than I! I know the principle is that it is supposed to be marvelous for the lymphatic system to go from heat, to cold to heat, to cold. I've done that, and I'm not sure how my nodes felt about it.

    But remove the heat from that equation, and I'll hide under the couch with my cat in order to avoid it.

    As always, your lovely illustrations are such a treat to behold. I hope you have a wonderful, successful, happy and healthy 2010, Frances.

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