To paraphrase an old saying, when you are young the days are short and the years long - presumably because you just can't wait for those years to pass so you can become an adult and do all the things adults can do, legally, not to mention getting out there and grabbing that big wide world by the tail. But as you grow older, the days are longer and the years shorter. The latter must be particularly true for retirees, who, unless they have hobbies or new jobs, must find some days long, especially after leading active and productive lifestyles.
That being said, it seems like only yesterday we were talking and writing about Danny Williams' abrupt exit stage left from the provincial political arena. And Kathy Dunderdale's ascension to the premier's throne. But all of that actually transpired in the dying days of 2010, over a year ago.
In October of last year (2011) of course, Dunderdale, not only had her interim title confirmed, but also made history by becoming the first woman to be elected premier (by the people) of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Earlier in the year, (May) Stephen Harper finally hit his political homerun after several unsuccessful times at bat.
Those were among the big political stories of the year, along with the NDP's history-making rise to official opposition status in the House of Commons. Sadly, that great triumph was to be followed by the untimely death of Jack Layton, the man who had led them to those lofty heights. People of all political stripes forget their partisanship long to share in the loss by remembering Layton as a decent fellow, who always had the best interests of his country at heart.
Closer to home, as we tear the wrapping paper off a brand new year, we look forward to some promising developments on the local horizon.
Conception Bay North's two largest towns continue to grow and prosper.
In Carbonear, work will continue on the new $108-million long-term care facility, which will create jobs during its construction stage and more permanent employment after it is operational. We should also see some steel on the new $15 million primary/elementary school on Valley Road.
Meanwhile, Bay Roberts is expected to see continued growth in its residential and commercial activity and looks forward to making some major strides in the development of its proposed business park.
While there wasn't much activity on the Veterans Memorial Business Park in neighbouring Spaniard's Bay in 2011, that project is still a go, according to all reports.
Talk about the years slipping by as we get older, can you believe it's been 20 years since Harbour Grace and Carbonear joined forces to co-host their first Newfoundland and Labrador Summer Games.
Based on the undisputed success of that inaugural venture, the two historic towns are looking forward to once again hosting the provincial event in August of 2012.
And if any naysayers believe those kinds of events, don't contribute to the local economy, just ask any local fast food or lodgings' establishment after any kind of sporting or cultural events that draw visitors into the area by the busload.
Can you believe this year will also mark the 20th anniversary of the closure of the Northern Cod fishery, which had sustained this "rock within the sea" for neigh on five centuries? And two decades later, the industry, which had often been dubbed "the backbone of our economy," is still in turmoil, with no end in sight.
While some of the smaller rural communities in our coverage area - especially in Trinity South continue to struggle with out-migration, on the whole, this region is not doing all that badly thank you very much.
Aside from local developments, our economy is still fuelled largely by big oil - local residents working in the Alberta oil patch on the turn around, or for longer periods of time and visiting families wherever possible.
And of course we can't forget that mega project on our doorstep at Long Harbour, which will continue to provide hundreds if not thousands of jobs for residents of Trinity Conception, who are within commuting distance of the job site.
In the infancy of a New Year that is still not dry behind its ears, we hope 2012 will be a happy year for you and your families.
It is already well on its way to being a prosperous one.
Bill Bowman, The Compass