The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Happy New Year!

by Dessa Rodeffer, Quill Publisher/Owner

December 31, 2008

What of this new year?

For many in our area, 2008 had a lot of unhappiness and disappointments.

"The Big Flood of 2008" will undoubtedly be remembered and talked about by our generation who live along the Mississippi River for a long long time.

For some, it changed their course in history such as a move to another region, a change in jobs, and for a few, an end to an era of a family gathering place.

At the same time, Middle Class America had to learn to tighten their financial belts to pay for skyrocketing gasoline prices, increased food costs due to transportation increases, and the continued high price of heating and medical bills.

In Illinois, we tried to make sense of bad roads, and heard legislators make excuses for not making Highway 34 safer, while watching our neighbors across the river in Iowa finish four-lane construction on U.S. 34 that enables motorists to travel all the way to Des Moines, Iowa and beyond on Interstate, by-passing every city. At the same time, here in Illinois, we find our state leader Governor Rod Blagojevich, accused of numerous misdealings, including an attempt to sell the Illinois U.S. Senate seat vacated by new President Elect Barack Obama.

Another historic event came about in 2008 as we watched Obama become the first African-American to be elected to the office of President of the United States.

So much has gone on this year, with major banks and major car manufacturers seeking government help for their financial woes that it makes our heads spin.

Top executives of big oil were called before Congress to testify of their pricing. Area businesses were being told that they would be closing down their companies. And the housing market, after going through some of its best times, hit a wall.

Then, we ended the year with ice and snow that canceled flights, caused planes to slide off runways, and made it hazardous to drive to family gatherings.

Maybe, it's a good thing that 2008 is ending this week, and we can get on with a new year.

As we look forward to celebrating a new year, let's all look for ways we can be part of the solution to a better 2009. May God bless you, and have a Happy New Year!