Forget New Year’s resolutions, those short-lived good intentions that often get forgotten by mid-March. But in a quest to understand what citizens, young and old, hope to see in 2010, a couple of VillageSoup reporters hit the streets for informal interviews. Just about everyone, minus one reticent public servant, generously shared their perspective on the new year. Some took a global view — world peace, a more tolerant society, help for the homeless — while others were more pragmatic, hoping for good health for their family and children, the increased availability of local food, and perhaps a good grade on a midterm exam. The bottom line, though, is that everyone interviewed optimistically expressed hopes for a better and saner world.

In one car filled with parents, plus a young soccer player, on the way to an out-of-town hockey game, the general outlook for 2010 called for paying better attention to the earth’s environmental health, including lowering the level of carbon emissions. That lofty goal was tempered by a more immediate desire that students in a certain high school grade cultivate a sense of academic achievement at the expense of their current social networking, that public option health care coverage get established, and that health care costs not get shoveled on the shoulders of small business. And there was the wish that a year-round soccer arena get constructed somewhere in the Midcoast.

That same hope for finding a health care bill that works was also articulated by a few employees at Fresh Off the Farm, as well as a resident of Quarry Hill Retirement Community. At one post office, an employee reported that she wanted her family to be healthy in 2010, and the same went for a business owner, who hoped Maine people would eat healthier, as well as buy and consume more local food. At Gilbert’s Pub, one gentleman said he wished a shelter would be established to care for Camden’s homeless teenagers.

The Great Recession did not figure highly on the list of topics discussed, perhaps because most felt the country is so far into it, there is little left to discuss but tactical maneuvers to find the way through it. But Georgia Durkee, who now has seen the Great Depression and the Great Recession, said she hopes to see the economy recover in 2010.

“What do you want to see in 2010,” the reporters asked. “What do you hope will happen?” The answers follow: