2017 and all that…

2nd January 2017

Well that’s another year over and done with. 2016 is finished and we can look forward to what 2017 can bring to us.

I’m sure 2016 was a good year for some people. You might have got married, had a significant birthday, been on the holiday of a lifetime, welcomed a new child into the world or got that big promotion you’ve been working towards. If that’s you, congratulations and well done.

For the rest, 2016 seems to have been a year to forget. Too many good people have died, starting with David Bowie. There’s been too much terror, anger and hate. The High Street is suffering again as demand is down and costs are going up. Now, we have Donald Trump in the White House! You would think that was enough wouldn’t you?

As the year draws to a close, I think many of us are either eagerly looking forward to the new year (can’t be as bad) or really scared of what might happen (it’s all going downhill). Think that might depend on your mood and your nature. You know, glass half full or half empty.

In the hospitality trade, all we can do is be there for you. Need somewhere to meet up with friends? Find a good café. Need somewhere to celebrate? Find a good restaurant. Need a relaxing holiday? Find a good hotel. A good café, restaurant, pub, hotel, bakery, delicatessen can help you forget about what’s going on in the big, bad world out there. That coffee, that piece of cheese, that pint, that steak – these can all help us to remember we’re human.

It has been a frustrating year in some ways. We’ve been busy building up new customers for the bakery and now it’s time to kick on again. 2017 will be a time when we expand the wholesale side of the business while we continue to grow the retail side. Similarly, we’ve overhauled a few things at the café but need to carry on and get a few more things refurbished and painted in the New Year. We’ve done quite a bit already but there’s more to be done. There’s all a new menu launch in the next week, which is always exciting. I think all the traders in West Cumbria hope that 2017 will be a better year than 2016. Getting the roadworks finally finished will help in Cockermouth.

I’m always a misery guts on New Year’s Eve. Can’t help myself. Can’t see what we’re celebrating. This year, however, I tried to make a huge effort to be positive, to enjoy being around friends and family and to have a good time. I think I did OK and New Years Day was a blast with a walk on the beach followed by a chill out evening watching ‘Casablanca’ and ‘When Harry Met Sally’ – two of our favourite films. The bottle of bubbly helped.

Fingers crossed then that 2017 will exceed expectations at work, at home and at play. Hopefully, it will be a cracker.

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2017 optimism