First… Last… Last First


One thing I try to do on the last day of the year, especially if I don’t leave town for the New Year’s celebration, is to get out of the house and clear my head. A walk in the park or on the beach or even a short drive out of town to disconnect can work wonders – I love the holidays, but they can be exhausting. That’s why I try to have a very short to-do list for the 31st. Once those few things are taken care of, I can relax and enjoy the day.


The sunset… it hadn’t even crossed my mind. But the pink sky made me check my watch. I was in time, I could still catch the last sunset of the year. I wasn’t going to find a perfect parking spot by the lake, I realized, as others had planned ahead and got there early enough to catch more than the final moments of the sun’s disappearing act. But it didn’t really matter. The view was the same for everybody. I grabbed my phone and got out of the car, determined to fully enjoy the moment – sunset, warm weather and good company – no other thought on my mind.


Easier said than done, I quickly remembered. I took a few photos and put away my phone, wanting to be present in the moment and take in that beauty. I would return the following day to catch the first sunset of 2023, I decided. That’s about as close as I come to a New Year’s resolution – they may work for some people, but they’re not my thing. So we just stood there, enjoying the moment in silence, ignoring the daunting cause of the warm spring-like breeze at the end of December.


Ignorance is some kind of bliss, no doubt about it. But perhaps sometimes what may appear to be ignorance is actually intentional compartmentalizing, that survival instinct which keeps us from going insane, allowing us to also enjoy small beautiful moments even in the midst of unspeakable tragedy. That ability to set aside pain, loss and fear for a few moments in order to find the energy to carry on is priceless. If they can do it, so should I, I told myself, watching the group of young Ukrainians who were laughing and chatting outside their cars, also enjoying the sunset by the lake.


I did return the following day and this time I brought my camera. I wanted at least the first day of the year to be imbued with positivity, beauty and promises kept. But as I was shooting that first sunset, I remembered that from a certain perspective it was the last one as well, since it was the only one… the last first one.


Perhaps I should stop before I start overanalysing so early in the year… Enjoy the sunset and may it be a peaceful, kind and considerate year for all of us. Good luck!



26 Replies to “First… Last… Last First”

  1. Hi Ana, this was a fun post and a nice way to end the year with a walk and clearing of the mind.
    I love the two individuals in your photo by the way – but all of the pictures in this post were refreshing
    oh and clever play with ideas and words “the last first one.”


    Liked by 2 people

    1. It was my pleasure, Anita. It was a beautiful sunset, but the camera settings were on my side this time, making it look slightly more spectacular than in reality, no editing necessary. 🙂


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