New Year's resolutions

Barbara sighed and picked up her pen. Another January the first. Why did it seem important that she should try to make a new start, just because the year was beginning? But, she always had done, ever since she could remember. She cast her mind back, and smiled as she saw the little girl she used to be concentrating hard on making a list for herself. Sucking the end of her pencil she finally only made one entry of things to do to make life better next year. “Be nicer to Ellen.” Was she? Nicer to Ellen? She struggles with her memory, but no Ellen jumps out to shriek “you were nicer to me, thank you!!”

Can it really be 2018? Where have all the years gone? It is extraordinary how the older you get the faster the years fly by, although each day drags interminably. What is the point of making resolutions anyway? What can she possibly try to achieve that has become so unimportant that she has forgotten it, she achieved it years ago, or was so impossible to keep so why bother? And who is looking anyway? No-one gives a toss what she does anymore, as long as she doesn't do it in the street and frighten the horses.

She could join the throngs of anxious people who these days always join a gym or health club, at the beginning of January. They are so keen, especially after parting with a small fortune for a year's subscription, but come mid-February the initial enthusiasm has waned, and traipsing along with other overweight and unhealthy people, to pound away on machines or join classes doing ridiculous exercises, has palled and all their good intentions have joined the wrapping from the Christmas presents, in the bottom of the wastepaper basket.

Making resolutions really implied that you had a future to look forward to. She knew that her future was all in the past. No longer did it matter if she lost a few pounds in weight, or 'strengthened her core' - whatever that was. Should she give up chocolate? Or her evening Scotch? What for? she asked herself. It was her little indulgence and she enjoyed it. Did no-one any harm.

She could vow to do more Charity work. Or to cancel her weekly maid and do her own housework. Or to read something 'worthy' instead of watching so much rubbish on television.

But she didn't think she would, she sighed. She had no-one to watch her trying and failing to keep her resolutions.

So she smiled, sipped her Scotch, and decided she wouldn't bother to make any.