I woke up full of hope for the New Year and my enthusiasm lessened a bit, by the amount of trash found seaside on my Malmok walk this morning. Revelers had a great time welcoming the New Year in our lovely neighborhood, and just left their garbage behind, walking away from the mess they’ve created, just like that, leaving their empty bottles and wasted fireworks shells, for the housekeepers. Who are these people? How can they leave bagged trash and many times just empties under a tree? How can they walk away, disappear into the sunset, leaving unfinished business behind?

Don’t they know that wilderness has no housekeepers; we are the stewards of beaches and trails. Here’s a New Year resolution for you: In 2018, we will never walk away from a mess we’ve created. We won’t move on, until it’s fixed.

And you know I am not talking about trash alone.

So I was optimistic. Then I noticed the to-cry-for new shopping mall exactly across the cruise ship terminal and I wanted to just throw myself on the ground and cry in despair. The just-opened store units are filled to the brim with poor quality rags, schmattas, demonstrating zero effort and nul komma nul creativity, foretelling zip business success and zilch for ROI.

But I was optimistic. So many good changes are in store for us in 2018. Innovation in our educational system, slowly transitioning to English as the language of instruction. The after school activities will guarantee all kids are off the street and off their phones, in the afternoon hours.  Adjustments will be made in social affairs, people saying something when they see something and an excellent response and monitoring systems will be placed for cases of suspected child neglect or abuse. We will pay great attention to our kids and our elderly. We will spend 70% of our salaries on living expenses, save 10%, give 10% o charity and spend 10% on travel and enrichment, on interesting hobbies and leisure activities. We will take good care of the ocean the reefs and our beaches. There will be no more stray cats and dogs on the island, they will all be adopted. People will report most of their income, I say most in view of all the flea markets and kiosks, and pay their taxes on time, allowing our progressive government to meet its obligations.  We will get better at preventing crime and responding to it.

As for our government, no minister will hire his sisters; there will be zero nepotism in the coming year. People will not be fired based on their political color – I just heard the diligent cleaning lady of the MFA in Paradera was let go because of her suspected political color. Government employees will be hired on a merit system. The Beach Policy will come into effect, licensing and regulating the use of our #1 asset. The bureaucracy will catch up on all files at DIMAS, and DIP and wherever files are accumulating. Our health care system will improve the ease of access to specialists – I just heard a patient passed away, waiting to see a gastric specialist for an appointment in May 2018. A new psychiatric ward, affiliated with the hospital, will help care for the haunted and suffering. There will be no big public works project undertaken without polling us for our opinion first, no new bridges, no trams.

Less concerts, less noise, more culture, more connectivity and better technology.

And let us once and for all, let go of the dream of a lucrative refinery. It’s all political trash. Verbal pollution. In 2018 we are letting go of petroleum, and sticking to alternative sources of energy!

Let me stop here, I can go on forever, but no one will read. Here’s to a successful 2018.




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January 02, 2018
Rona Coster