Reflecting Back on a Tumultuous Year
While I can’t look back at 2022 and say it was a bad year, or any more difficult than most of those in the recent past, it was a year Fraught. Lots of little things, and a few bigger, and even Big things, made it a difficult period to navigate.
Business was bumpy. Spring Break in West Texas brought hopes of at least a satisfactory year, then political upheaval and soaring gas prices dashed those. While we loved the rain that once more graced our fair desert land, weather and all its fickle Timing left us soggy too often, or cold, or windy, just when we should have been busier. This is a capricious land, and it has outdone itself at times in both 2021 and 2022.
It has been harder than I expected to get a handle on just what Somewhere Over the Rainbow wants to Be, and what I want to become along with it. I feel as though I have gotten so caught up in just making ends meet sometimes, that I, or we, too often loose sight of the ideals we began this business with.
However, this is not Doom and Gloom. Only some healthy and needed re-evaluation of goals, of principles and of where Heart lays in all of this. I am still not sure of just what changes the New Year, 2023 if you can believe it, will bring, but I know that it will bring change, and I look forward to that. While some people regard change with dismay or caution, I see it as the Healthy Alternative to stagnation and standing still. While I may not always welcome it as the venerated guest it should be, I fully understand its importance to life.
Looking Forward to Whatever Tomorrow
(and Next Year) Brings
While it is a New Year we are courting just Now, it is but the Gateway to a winter inclined to be as unconditionally obstinate and unpredictable as the people you will likely meet in this still largely untamed land. There will be ups and downs of temperature. Perhaps there will be snow. There will certainly be some hard cold, and the mercurial winds that blow relentlessly across the plains, and whistle and howl through the mountains for a good part of the year.
And there will be days so pleasant, so redolent of spring and the growth to come that you forget the season. Then there will be Fire Danger Alerts, and High Wind Warnings and Watches, and we will remember again. There will be brooding clouds that perhaps spit out some much needed moisture, whether it is rain or ice, and there will be Sunshine so bright that you squint at it in Joy.
This is West Texas, and if you weather it, if you survive its harsh and unyielding initiation, you will find that it gets inside you, that you become as volatile and unwavering as this land, and that you Love it with all your Heart and Soul. Now, the question for this New Year and those to come, is how to best serve this beloved place, how to best fit it and to live with it, and to properly honor it at the same time?
I already know that I want us to renew our Intent to Live our Ideals, to continue to promote a more eco-conscious lifestyle, to use packaging and packing materials that lower our impact and reduce our carbon footprint. I want to continue to support organizations, businesses and individuals who support and embody those principles we hold most dear. What I really want to do is to expand this vision of both healing and preserving the Planet, to include more space for Regeneration, for changing our attitudes toward the natural world and the way we [must] interact with it.
We will continue to shout to the Rooftops (or post on Social Media) about the importance of Shopping and Living Locally. While we believe the Whole World Matters, we should all start in our own backyards. When we buy from small local businesses, we help support an entire web, from the community tax and economic base, to local business owners, their employees and artisans livelihoods, to supporting the local charities and organizations, who in their turn go further toward strengthening the community economically and socially. It is a Web, and it is a Circle of Life and Sustenance that meets far more than just personal needs. It is the alchemy that makes of us more than just a collection of individuals. Together, we are a force for change and healing.
Wishing All of You a Happy and Thoughtful 2023
So there are some of the thoughts that I end 2022 and begin 2023 with. These are not Resolutions, or anything of the sort. While the artificial line between years puts me in a reflective mood, I don’t think we ever need to wait for an occasion to rephrase, at least to ourselves, our goals and the principles we stand for and upon. Change will come, and we always need to be ready when it does. Happy New Year!