I know it’s February 2017, and I’m a bit late on this, but it’s a tradition to sum up my year gone by…better late than never and all that, so here it is (what I remember of it anyway):
The year 2016 was one of lifetime adventures, big changes and memorable moments. It was – all in all – a very mixed bag, if I’m being completely honest. The first half was fairly stressful and low, but I’m glad to say, ended positively, but still, there were a number of months where I was a bit lost in limbo land. Maybe in a few more years time, I’ll publicly tell you about it.
February 2016 – Hong Kong/Phuket/Sydney
For the first time in many, many years, a lot of my family were going to be in Hong Kong for Chinese New Year. It was a lot of fun, joining in the village celebrations, but it was mainly just being really grateful that we were all able to be together – it’s quite rare. We then travelled to Phuket, where my cousin got married. This was a bit of holiday for us all (a holiday on holiday), it was only 4 days long but it’s one I will never forget. I’ll also never forget the time I went into the sea and came back out with several mini jellyfish stings and mosquitos bites that swelled up to a size of a tennis ball all over my arms and neck…
I then made a lone last dash trip to Sydney for the first ever time to see my sister. I’d never been to Sydney before, but I felt at home as soon as I landed. It was just like London, only it was really bright and sunny and people were a lot more relaxed. The trains were a lot more spacious and cleaner too…ok, ok, so it wasn’t exactly like London, but you know what I mean. It felt easy going.
February 2016 – Emilie
I should mention that the main reason I went to Sydney was to meet my newly born niece. She’s the first baby of the family so it was all very exciting and emotional. What a little wonder. And to think – she came from my sister! Human life is amazing. She is amazing.
June 2016 – Amsterdam
Last year for my birthday I went to Prague, and this year, I decided to go to Amsterdam for the weekend. I’d been before when I was a baby, but I obviously didn’t remember any of it, so I wanted to experience it again. My highlight was the bike tour – those were the most comfortable bikes I’d ever ridden on. It made cycling along the road easy. I also queued up in the rain to go inside Anne Frank’s house – which I did not regret. What an eye opener. Amazement, disbelief and utter sadness sweeps over you.
August 2016 – Peak District
Having lived not very far from here for years, it was a shocker that I had never been before. But I finally made it to the lovely little place called Bakewell, had my weight in real Bakewell puddings and went on a typical British walk which included packed lunches, sun and rain, and a bit of sheep. Exactly what the doctor ordered on a Bank Holiday.
September 2016 – Dubrovnik, Croatia
I’ll be honest, the main reasoning for this holiday was because they filmed Game of Thrones here. We paid to go on the full GoT tour – and it was totally worth it. The holiday in general was just what was needed – a mixture of city, culture, architecture, coastal and food. I would definitely recommend you visit if you ever get the chance, small but lots to do and good weather – so bonus!
October 2016 – New job
My time finally came when I found a new job. Or rather, it found me. Years of persistence, and then, thinking it just wasn’t meant to be. The job at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home found me and I felt like it was fate. I truly believe everything happens for a reason, and even though it was a tough few years, and I have to admit, I struggled – deeply – this came to me like a great big light at the end of a very dark, dark tunnel. But I made it through, and I’ll be forever grateful for this opportunity and new lease of life.
December 2016 – Family Christmas
And just like that, it’s Christmas already. I have to admit, usually Christmas is a bit of let down for me. I like the build up to it, and I don’t mind listening to repetitive Christmas songs, but the actual day is always a bit…’meh’. But this year, was probably the best one I ever had. It might be old age, whether mine or family members, but it was great to be part of something, and to see loved ones. It made it all the more exciting as my sister and her little family came to visit for Christmas – it made it feel like there was a purpose to it all. Lots of new memories were made, ones that will last forever. Lots of photos were taken, and I make no apology for that.
28 December 2016 – Wedding fun times
If it were possible to feel Christmassy and love – it’s to attend one of your good friend’s wedding straight after Christmas. The whole setting and vibe was just perfect. I was also privileged enough to be invited to do a reading – which I must admit, was fun but quite nerve-wracking as it meant I was saying the word ‘Pooh’ a lot during the ceremony…
And here we are, the eve of 2017. I ended up staying in Kent for the New Year period and I felt like I was on a proper holiday. It was so relaxed and fun – it also meant I didn’t need to think about normal things either. I felt like my brain had finally rested from the rollercoaster ride of 2016. It was also the first time in ever, that I ventured out of the house on New Year’s Day, feeling fresh and perky. It must be my old age.