Now, the internet being such a wonderfully equalizing thing, I have no idea what most of your religious views are. Not that it would make any difference - I already love you all. The point is that for those of you who don't know, tomorrow (wednesday) is actually Ash Wednesday, the first day of the catholic fasting period, Lent. It marks the end of what is, in Austria at least, the 'ball season'. Today was (the last day of) Carneval, in fact - which basically means good-bye-to-meat by the way.
You're meant to give something up for lent, something important to you. Something that is a true sacrifice for you, and thus meaningful in some way. I'm not really very religious - or at all religious, to be honest - but I am roman catholic if you really want to know.
As such, it was a childhood constant (almost everyone else in my primary school was roman catholic, or some species of catholic, too) to (try to) give up chocolate, or TV, or some such for lent. Things that seem important, given up because it was a ritual all of my school friends performed rather than for any deeper reasons.
I'm still not religious enough to give something up for that reason, but I am going to take this opportunity to give something up - not for the sake of ritual, not for the sake of religion, just for my own sake. For myself.
A lot of things come to mind... chocolate, for one. And TV.
But I don't want to fall back into old patterns, so it has to be something different. I thought of Coffee, but I don't think I could manage that. I don't want to set myself up to fail. Maybe that's not quite the spirit of things, but honestly, coffee? I need my coffee.
I will, however, try to fool myself with decaf. One proper coffee, the rest will be fake. Or so the theory.
The other thing I want to give up is wasting time. I'm really good at that, and it's going to be really difficult to do this...impossible, in fact. So let's say I want to waste LESS time.
I also want to do more sport. I play squash regularly with my sister (we don't really do matches, we just hit the ball against the wall - does wonders for releasing aggressions, I tell you), I take riding lessons and tennis lessons. The latter have been really hard to organize lately, but I intend to work on that.
One last thing, but for me, probably the most important: I will give up buying new books for Lent.
No, I'm serious. I have more than enough books on my shelves, they deserve my full attention. So no books for Tessa until easter.
To sum it up:
For Lent, I will....
- try to fool myself out of drinking so much coffee by drinking decaf instead
- waste less time
- do more sports
- buy NO books
I'll let you know how I do.
What about you? Are you giving something up for lent? Or for the next month or so?