Preeminently, 2008 has been discouraging. Most of the reasons for this are so general and obvious as to require no elaboration, the rest so obscure as to elude it. Suffice to say, the ending of the old year seems to me more a cause for celebration, or at any rate a sigh of relief, than anything else.
Yet for all its gratuitously nasty surprises, minor sorrows and longueurs, 2008 has not been without consolations. And while the variously cheering effects of my beloved husband, son, cats, small amounts of travel and a box-set of Bach cantatas (Harnoncourt conducting) might have been predicted, the success — however modest — of Fugitive Ink’s first year proved more of a surprise.
The fact that Fugitive Ink will soon celebrate its first birthday — quite possibly with a self-indulgently long, effusive review of this, for what could be more festive? — is in no small part due to the kindness of friends, the virtual sort as much as the terrestrial, and of course those in between. Which is to say, warm thanks, in no very obvious order, to Iain, Julian H, Barry, Franklin, and in particular, to the incomparable if presently silent JL.
Thanks too — profound ones — to all those visitors whose comments entertained, informed and generally encouraged me. All of you made Fugitive Ink seem a bit less like a diary left open on my desk, and more like a means of communication.
Praise, curiosity and friendly concern — sometimes in the form of personal emails rather than comments per se — has been more welcome than some of my correspondents may have realised. Indifference from some quarters was expected. Outright hostility (‘you used to be better than this’) should perhaps in retrospect have come as less of a surprise than it did, but was at any rate disillusioning, which is rarely a bad thing.
That, anyway, was 2008. Life moves on. In the year ahead, I hope that Fugitive Ink will continue to provide more badly-edited, over-elaborate, near-unreadable commentary on deeply obscure subjects than virtually anyone will want to read — if only because, well, some of you clearly do enjoy reading this stuff, almost as much as I enjoy writing it. That being the case, it only remains for me to wish all of you much happiness, peace and tranquility in 2009.