I suspect in the future when I look back on 2011, I’ll consider it to be a pretty good year.
I travelled solo for 4 months around the other side of the world. I kayaked with baby seals off the South Island of New Zealand, washed elephants in a river in Laos and overcame my fear of heights to do two bungy jumps and a sky dive (I didn’t see that one coming).
I sailed an America’s cup racing yacht, climbed volcanos, shot an AK-47. I completed my third nanowrimo, visited over 50 museums in seven countries, went to my cousin’s wedding on an Australian beach, hiked on a glacier. I survived almost certain death on an 11-hour boat trip in Cambodia, white water rafting in NZ and food poisoning in Saigon. I bodyboarded down a massive sand-dune. I learnt to surf and to windsurf.
I rode a champion endurance horse with a trot like a pneumatic drill on steroids. I piloted a helicopter low level down a river. I stood on the Ho Chi Minh Trail, visited the temples of Angkor Wat and the Killing Fields of Cambodia. I slept in an underground house in Coober Pedy and drank my way through the wine list in a McLaren Vale winery. I lit a lot of incense sticks in a lot of Buddhist temples.
I got bitten by giant ants, thrown off a galloping stunt horse and broke my arm in a football match. I emerged unscathed from riding helmetless on the back of mopeds. I started to teach myself the guitar and learnt how to play Fire and Rain (except that really tricky bar chord in the middle). I went on a football tournament to Prague and won most improved player and best goal of the season (admittedly it was my only goal. Ever.) I made new friends. I spent quality time with old ones and family.
I volunteered for two charities, wrote a few bad poems and made a lot of handmade gifts. I managed to acquire a running habit. I ended the year very slightly lighter than I’d begun it. I learnt what is really important to me and what I can do if I ignore the fear. I started two new blogs and wrote 160 blog posts.
It’s good to look back on the fun stuff. The last seven months have not been the easiest because of not having a job and to a large extent I’ve had my life on hold. It’s easy to forget that on balance, 2011 wasn’t so bad really. Let’s see what 2012 can do.