The Year that Was

What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
Most recently, I trekked through virgin rainforest, gave a leech a hearty meal of my blood, cleaned out Orangutan and Sun Bear cages, sat behind a tribal Chief as we went through the Borneo rainforest. I’m sure there was other stuff I did in the year but it all seems so long ago now.

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I still have the post it note on my desk saying ‘SIT UP STRAIGHT!’ I sometimes kept it. Mostly I tried. I’m not sure about next year.

Did anyone close to you give birth?
I think we’ve just had the one birth this year. My cousin (of sorts) welcomed a baby boy, Roman, to the family. Hopefully I get to meet him soon.

Did anyone close to you die?
My godmother, I have more than one, but she’s the only godparent who’s ever had a real presence in my life.

What countries did you visit?
European vacations dominated this year with trips to Barcelona, Paris, and Copenhagen. True to form, there was a trip to New York, however there was also a trip to a brand new place with an Ape Adventure in Malaysia rounding off the year.

What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
More of my own words. I wrote something every day but I think I got lazy on some days, I need to be better, or at the very least as good as I used to be.

What date from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
I really can’t think of one date. December 18th perhaps, I stepped back without going backwards.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Making it out of the jungle, and being brave enough to lose it all.

What was your biggest failure?
I’m not sure this was a year of failure.

Did you suffer illness or injury?
You know I was probably pricked with a needle more times this year than any other. All in the interest in preventing illness though, they seem to have worked.

What was the best thing you bought?
Honestly, my iPod Touch. My first and only purchase of that type of fruit, I finally gave in. It kept me entertained in the jungle and since downloading Jenga and the Game of Life it has kept me entertained out of it as well. There truly is an app for that.

Where did most of your money go?
To the jungle! Perhaps not whilst I was in it, but certainly getting there.

What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Getting to see a friend on stage, I’ve seen her in things before but seeing her on stage, well that’s something to get excited about.

What song(s) will always remind you of 2011?
Pretty much anything Adele. That voice, it will be timeless. If we’re going for one song then ‘Someone Like You’. Also, Christine Perri, ‘Jar of Hearts’ and its juxtapose, ‘A Thousand Years’. They may not remind me of this year specifically but they will remind me of the feeling.

Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) Happier of sadder? Happier, and for the first time in a long time, quietly hopeful.
b) Thinner or fatter? Given the amount of gym time I’d like to err on “fitter” rather than either of the choices.
c) Richer or poorer? Richer I think, I hope. Plus I have a financial plan, something will scupper that I’m sure, but for now there’s a plan and hopefully that’ll see me right.

What do you wish you’d done more?
Again, written for myself, or written at all. It seems without a deadline it’s harder for me to put pen to paper. I’ll make sure to rectify that in the New Year.
What do you wish you’d done less of?
I think everything was in proportion this year, it certainly didn’t feel like once of excess.

Did you fall in love in 2011?
Now there’s always the possibility of a yes.

What was your favourite TV programme?
This year it has to go to the geeks – Big Bang Theory. It took me a while to finally come round to this show but I am glad I did. Sheldon is genius, have to love a guy with that extensive a t-shirt collection who’s so passionate about his place on the sofa. Plus, no one can look at you with as much disdain as Sheldon can.

Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
There’s no room in my life for hate.

What was the best book you read?
As much as I hate to admit it, I am really enjoying the Harry Potter series. I finally got round to reading them, and though they will never have that childhood pull that Roald Dahl or the Narnia books have, I have to admit they’re not half bad.

What was your greatest musical discovery?
Adele. I was always aware of her but I don’t think I knew just how amazing she was until this year.

What did you want and get?
As always – to see my friends, that’s all I ever need.

What did you want and not get?
To be a writer.

What was your favourite film of this year?
Unfortunately this year I don’t think there was anything I watched that I thought was an outstanding film. There were a few that weren’t bad – the comic book films, Green Lantern was a lot better than most people said it was. I think perhaps Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Pt. 2), it was good enough for me to go to a midnight showing and also watch on the plane to and from Malaysia.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
31st birthday and so I had a 13yr old’s birthday party – cinema to watch Thor and then pizza, albeit fancy gourmet pizza.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I think if I got to see my friends more, I got to see a lot of them a lot of the time but you have those kinds of people in your life then you can never see them enough.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Will it ever change from cool t-shirts and Chucks? I think not.

What kept you sane?
My (in)sanity. I’m glad that they choose to keep me.

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I think Prince William did a lot to make the whole world fall in love with the British Royal Family again.

What political issue stirred you the most?
The Con-DemNation was still riling most people this year, including me. I’m not sure it would be any easier for any other government but it just feels like it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

Who did you miss?
Rhea and Maricar, it’s the first time in a while that I haven’t seen them at least once during the year. That can’t happen again next year.

Who was the best new person you met?
I’d have to say Jennifer, when I was at a real low point in KL, she helped keep me distracted. I don’t know how I would have coped if I hadn’t met her at the tour desk in the hotel lobby looking for someone to be her travel buddy. Trust me to go half way round the world to make friends with a NYer!

Tell us a valuable lesson you learnt in 2011:
There’s no place like home.

What was the nicest thing someone told you about yourself?
I got told I was awesome a fair few times, that’s always nice to hear, especially from someone you think is pretty awesome themselves.

The most touching experience you’ve had this year?
Each and every time I held my god-daughter and she looked up at me and smiled. There’s a photo of her asleep wearing a shirt that says ‘perfect’, she truly is.

What did you like most about yourself this year?
That I dared to risk it all.

What did you hate most about yourself this year?
I should have written more. I don’t think I could have called myself much of a writer this year.

Was 2011 a good year for you?
It’s hard to say. It feels like a lot of this year was doing stuff in preparation for next year. I’m not sure there were enough memorable moments and I suppose that there were no memorably bad moments is a good thing. Still, I hope that next year I’m able to say it was one of my very best.

Where were you when 2011 began?
At home watching the fireworks on the TV and then Tomb Raider 2, what can I say? Angelina any day of the year!

Who were you with?
My folks.

Where will you be when 2011 ends?
At home watching the fireworks on the TV lol, starting to become tradition. I’ve just come through the road closures, it’s not about getting squished as the new year starts.

Who will you be with when 2011 ends?
Two people coughing and sniffling. Wonderful.

Do you have a resolution for 2012?
I don’t think so, I think I shall simply try to be better. That sounds good.

What was your favourite month of 2011?
June I think. Got to spend time with some of my favourite people and the city started to warm up. It just feels like it was bright.

What was your favourite record from 2011?
Adele Live at the Royal Albert Hall or Glee: The Warblers, gotta love Blaine.

How many concerts and shows did you see in 2011?
Um a whole bunch, I can’t remember all of them but definitely Wicked and Legally Blonde were in there. No surprise on the former. The outstanding show of the year though had to be seeing Idina Menzel perform at the Royal Albert Hall. That voice. Simply sublime.

Did you drink a lot of alcohol in 2011?
Hardly any apart from the last night in the longhouse in Borneo. They don’t call it fire water for nothing!

Did you do anything you are ashamed of this year?
Nope, no shame here.

How much money did you spend in 2011?
A lot, but I’m sure it was all worth it.

If you could go back in time to any one moment of 2011 and change something, what would it be?
Again, everything happens for a reason.

What are your plans for 2012?
A ticket has already been bought for early in the year, there are tickets to other things including The Olympics. Feels like it’s going to be a busy year, quietly hopeful it will be a good one.

How are you different now that the year has ended?
I think I have a better sense of home and what I need to feel right. I have pushed myself this year and I have a greater understanding of my limits but also of what I am capable of.

Whose behaviour merited celebration?
I’m gonna say Fatz, she kept me entertained almost every day at the job – when she wasn’t slacking off.

Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
No one this year, I tended to stay away from people whose behaviour could end up appalling or depressing me.

What are your wishes for the new year?
As they were last year it seems: That I find my happiness, or at least more things to put in the “Yes” column.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
“Never thought I’d find someone like you.”

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