The Year in Review 2012

It’s that time of the year, again.

# What did you do in 2012 that you’ve never done before?

Move abroad and suddenly everything is new, from taxes to voting to how you do the dishes. Also, I attended a conference. And wore false eyelashes. Not at the conference, though. Played Scrabble on Christmas Day. (By the way, I can’t believe I forgot to mention swimming with my head down last year. I’d never done that before, and it definitely should have gone on the achievements list as well, and my swimming gear may well have been the best thing I bought. I mean, I’m still proud of my aquatic adventures a year later – how on earth did I fail to mention them?!)

# Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

Didn’t make any so had none to keep. I might think of some for next year, possibly in the sleep more, worry less vein.

# Did anyone close to you give birth?

Not at all.

# Did anyone close to you die?

Not particularly close, but an old relative did pass away.

# What countries did you visit?

Norway, Ireland, Finland. Feels odd, that.

# What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?

A proper kitchen (afraid not), a proper washing machine (equally unlikely), better time management (joking, right?).

# What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

I won’t remember it a year from now, not without reading it here first, but I did emigrate on 7 January. For the record, 12/12/12 was utterly unremarkable.

# What’s your biggest achievement of the year?

I gave myself a lot to do and I managed to do most some of it. And, more luck than achievement, I secured funding to keep going for another year. But honestly, the year has been more about survival than anything else.

# What was your biggest failure?

I didn’t read enough. Not for work, not for leisure. This needs to change. Oh, and I didn’t go to the theatre once. This also needs to change. And I can think of a lot of other things that didn’t happen, or didn’t happen enough, but “failure” doesn’t seem quite right. OK, how’s this: I failed to either manage or to give up on managing my time. Yet again.

# Did you suffer illness or injury?

Enough with the colds already: on my third one since August, now. And they’ve been proper fever-cough-sneeze fests, too. Had a bit of a back episode in late spring/early summer – same old but worse than it’s been lately.

# What’s the best thing you bought?

The filter kettle is certainly the one I’ve used the most.

# Whose behaviour merited celebration?

This question gets more and more difficult each year. Professionally, there were people without whose generosity I couldn’t have done my job, as it were. Other than that, let’s say all the people who voted for the Green president we didn’t quite get.

# Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?

You know all the news this year about bombings and killings and human rights violations and polluting, et bloody cetera? Those people.

# Where did most of your money go?

Rent, transportation, tuition fees. Not necessarily in that order.

# What did you get really, really excited about?

Music, whenever I had the time; singing & playing rather than listening. And, for a while anyway, Norway.

# What song will always remind you of 2012?

We’re a special kind of people known as show people. And we’d be a tough act to follow. And pretty much that whole musical (Curtains, that is), because I was in it.

# Compared to this time last year, are you happier or sadder? Richer or poorer? Thinner or fatter?

  • It’s not good to answer these sort of questions when half your brain has just come out through your nose. I’m ok. Could be better.
  • I’m probably a little poorer but not too bad.
  • The way I’ve been eating this Christmas, you’d think food was going out of fashion. Does that answer your question?

# What do you wish you’d done more of?

Oh, you know, everything. Laziness and an overdeveloped need for achievement don’t go well together.

# What do you wish you’d done less of?

A lower sugar consumption might have meant fewer visits to the dentist this Christmas.

# How did you spend Christmas?

Eating, sleeping, watching Laputa. Just hanging out with my mum, a walk, sauna, that sort of thing. I already mentioned the Scrabble (courtesy of my brother & his SO).

# Did you fall in love in 2012?

Had no reason to.

# What was your favourite TV program?

Caught up with Doctor Who (finally – I hadn’t seen Matt Smith yet; I rather liked him, and the different Doctor-companion dynamic, once I got used to it), although now I’m again a Christmas episode behind. QI is always enjoyable. Developed a bit of a thing for Derren Brown when I discovered all his old shows on the C4 website. And of course, how could I forget (well quite easily, actually, since it was only a few episodes many moons ago): Sherlock. Love it.

# Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

Nope.

# What was the best book you read?

The Earthsea Trilogy by Ursula K. Le Guin. And if you count work, Embodied Interaction (no I haven’t read all of it, shh).

# What was your greatest musical discovery?

I didn’t listen to anything much. Baltic Crossing is probably my only “new” discovery, and very good they are, too. But I did sing and play, even if I didn’t have time to do as much as I would’ve liked, so that was something.

# What did you want and get?

A chance to stay abroad, doing what I’m doing, for another year.

# What did you want and not get?

An office. Mod cons the way I (or most Nordic people) understand them. And, every now and then, a life (as opposed to a to-do list).

# What was your favourite film of this year?

I’ve been to the cinema exactly once, so The Intouchables gets an unfair advantage. It wasn’t bad, though.

# What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I went to Tampere on my own and failed to get very excited about anything. It’s a nice place, I just wasn’t in the mood. I was four years older than the first time I completed this questionnaire. Time flies.

# What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Space when I needed to be alone, company when I needed company. The balance didn’t always quite work out this year.

# How would you describe your personal fashion concept for 2012?

“Smelly”. No, seriously, I live in an old house with a very old washing machine. All my clothes smell like they’ve come straight out of a charity shop. Another fitting (pun intended) attribute: “too small”. I’m not proud of it, that’s just the way it is.

# What kept you sane?

Flatmates.

# What celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

“Fancy” is a bit strong, but I definitely had a celeb crush on Derren Brown (yes I know he’s gay it doesn’t matter shut up).

# What political issue stirred you the most?

I have little idea what’s going on in the world these days. The presidential election (the one I got to vote in rather than the American one) made me hopeful for a wee while even if the outcome was predictably not what I dared hope. China scares me. So does the Middle East. And Russia.

# Who did you miss?

The people back home.

# Who was the best new person you met?

It’s not a competition.

# Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.

I am what I am; you can’t go home again; you get out of life what you put in..? Well not really – it’s been more “you need a proper winter for spring to feel like spring”.

No party invitations this year so I predict an early night. Enjoy your New Year’s Eve and what’s more important, have a lovely New Year!

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