Every news organisation in the world is currently filling their pages with "year in review" content so that their staff can perhaps take some holidays.
So… I figured I better get in on the year in review action. Not to mention that I am having withdrawal from writing the year in reviews myself. The year is just not over until you have painstakingly trawled through archives to compile an annual overview that most people won't give a shit about…
So, here we go. :p
In January, I made resolutions, none of which I have kept. I went on a South Coast beach holiday for Australia Day, where I drove the car into a pole and played the best party game ever, King of the Cocks.
In February, I got really really sick for a few weeks. I also moved to the North Shore, which was very pretty, but the people there thought that broken running shoes belonged in the paper recycling tub.
In March. Hmm. The blog doesn't give much insight except that I made some salads and watched Home and Away and took the piss out of it. I also almost got into fisticuffs with an old lady at the Neutral Bay supermarket. Was still sick.
In June, my computer died and I lost everything on the hard drive. I also went to Berrima and ate jam and scones. I was also still sick.
In July, I got my wisdom teeth out and it was painful and horrible. I also got my tea leaves read at work. I also talked to the Pope when covering World Youth Day in Sydney. A big month. I was also really sick again.
In August, I finally found out why I had been sick all year. I also started applying for overseas jobs, thinking it would take months and months to find something. Three days after I had applied for a job in Jakarta, I had it. I had one month exactly to pack up my whole life and move to Indonesia.
In September, I packed up. It was busy and stressful. I also said goodbye to my beautiful friends and work people and said sayonara to stunning Sydney. I arrived in JKT. Big WTF moment. Dove straight in to work four days after leaving my old job in Sydney…
In November, I went to Singapore again, went to crazy house in Pelabuhan Ratu… and our paper launched!
In December, I went to Taman Safari, Pucak (x2), Bandung, Sunda Kelapa… also had a few weeks of just being grumpy about Jakarta, but I'm feeling much more settled now. Think I just needed a break. Had a nice Christmas (first one away from home…) with my friend from Oz visiting and my Jakarta peoples.
So… that was my year. I went from baking biscuits and flitting around farmer's markets on the weekend in Sydney to moving to Indonesia, literally in the blink of an eye. But it's funny, a lot of the stuff I remember about the year isn't written on the blog. The frustration of being constantly sick, messing with my mindset so badly. Not knowing what to do next with my job. The constant self-doubt about whether my writing or my photos would ever be good enough. The extremely overwhelming month where all of a sudden I was moving to Indonesia, a place I knew pretty much nothing about, and I had to pack up my whole life and say goodbye to everyone… didn't even get to say goodbye to my family because I didn't have time to go down south.
The second thoughts about whether I had made the right decision when I got here…
But now, I'm feeling much more settled. I am lucky to have met some very cool people through my work, and I'm excited about the possibilities for writing and travel and learning here.
And I also feel so grateful that when things were bumpy in Sydney, I had my dear friends and my amazing work collegues back there who helped me through, and I know that being over here and away from them won't change that. And my family, of course. They are biologically obligated not to ditch me.
So these are my resolutions for '09. Not even going to bother with the usual "go to the gym regularly", "eat less chocolate" crap. It never works.
Here they are:
1. Get as much out of living in Indonesia as possible.
2. Produce at least 6 portfolio-worthy journalistic stories, as well as some other wishy-washy lifestyle writing and hopefully some more published photography.
3. Try and be sensible with my money so I can do more travelling.
4. Be happy and have fun!
Happy New Year everyone!