The Year in Review 2016

1 January, 2017

I need to change the name of this blog to something that better reflects my annual blogging habits. A blog written by hardly anyone and read even less. Still, the year must be recorded, thusly:

# What did you do in 2016 that you’ve never done before?

Well I finished a bloody PhD. Don’t try this at home, kids. (Also dyed my hair, which has given me more enjoyment.)

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

Whatever my intentions (sic) were, I don’t seem to have written them down anywhere. That pretty much sums up the year: I have no idea what my intentions were. My resolutions for next year are of the easily said than done variety: a) get a job, b) get a home, c) get a life. In any order. Okay and I need to sort out my sleep, and training, and life goals. How’s this for a resolution: Sort It Out.

# Did anyone close to you give birth?


# Did anyone close to you die?

Close, no, although death was touring the area.

# What countries did you visit?

I “visited” Finland from the UK and UK from Finland. That doesn’t really count now does it?

# What would you like to have in 2017 that you lacked in 2016?

A home. Some income-generating work. Training opportunities. Meaning.

# What dates from 2016 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

24 June. Day after Brexit vote. Midsummer’s Eve. I flew to London. (That’s the one I’ll remember, if anything, rather than, say, the exact date of my viva a few days later.) There are a few others, to do with moving and graduating, that I remember at least for now. How unusual!

# What’s your biggest achievement of the year?

See above re finishing a PhD. It was quite a dash to the finish…and then the next finish…and then the last one…with anxious waiting in between.

# What was your biggest failure?

Is drifting a failure? Is needing so. much. sleep. a failure? Not sure. I don’t know if I could have done more. It’s not like I’ve had a lot of energy to spare.

# Did you suffer illness or injury?

Stop training and you stop injuring yourself. Write a dissertation, though, and your neck and shoulders may never recover.

# What’s the best thing you bought?

It’s been a year of getting rid of things – moving countries will do that to you. I did buy new glasses, though. No more rogue reflection!

# Whose behaviour merited celebration?

I think at this point I have to say all the people who let me stay in their houses throughout the year, and who offered to write me references or otherwise help.

# Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?

Last year I wrote: “Have you seen the news this year?” *slow clap* Little did I know.

# Where did most of your money go?

Airlines, rail companies, postal services.

# What did you get really, really excited about?

I didn’t.

# What song will always remind you of 2016?

I don’t know that any will, but I can’t seem to get this with the late great George Michael out of my head now:

And then of course there’s this:

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

  • Happier…and sadder. Or relieved but worse for wear.
  • Poorer, baby, always.
  • I guess I’m about the same. Same clothes, anyway.

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

Circus and all that entails. I should probably say job hunting, but who wishes to do that?

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

I acquired a serious nonogram addiction. Katana is great, but god how it devours time. Not unrelated, staying up late has been an issue.

# How did you spend Christmas?

With Mum, eating, and admiring our lovely tree.

# Did you fall in love in 2016?

I did. His name is John and he’s a cat. (Literally. Not in a “cool cat” kind of way. A genuine feline.)

# What was your favourite TV program?

It wasn’t the most satisfying season of GBBO ever, but did it have to be the last one? *sob*

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

Not hate exactly, but there’s fear and anxiety. Such an uplifting year, politically, don’t you think?

# What was the best book you read?

I didn’t read very much, and nothing particularly gripping. Gerard Russell’s Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms was interesting in an educational way.

# What was your greatest musical discovery?

My musical what now?

# What did you want and get?

Someone to take my old room. A cat-sitting gig. A visit to an adventure park. Did I mention my PhD yet???!!!

# What did you want and not get?

Lots and lots of circus. A cat of my own. A job.

# What was your favourite film of this year?

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

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

I hung out at my aunt’s, on my own, and saw a folk music concert in the evening.

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

Having my own bedroom all the time and not just when I’m lucky and other people lend me theirs.

# How would you describe your personal fashion concept for 2016?

If it’s not stretchy viscose I’m not wearing it. In a word, slouchy.

# What kept you sane?

Cats. (Having said that, my affection towards cats has led other people to question my sanity.)

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

I didn’t.

# What political issue stirred you the most?

I’ve felt most personally affected by Brexit and how unemployment and, really, the unemployed, are treated.

# Who did you miss?

All my UK mates.

# Who was the best new person you met?

I’m going to have to say John the cat.

# Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2016.

There’s always room for one thing more in the cupboard. It ain’t over till it’s over.


Here’s to a better new year.