That Was The Year That Was

Doing a round-up sometimes seems like a terrible idea. Especially when, for me, this year has had its ups and downs. It started off very badly.

A friend passed away after being admitted to hospital just before new year. No life is ever quite long enough, but hers was definitely too short. She was the kind of person that you thought would just always be there. Her loss was a tragedy, and it made me realise that I don't spend enough time seeing people, but it is almost impossible to change that sometimes. I tried to write a piece back in January about her spirit and the loss I felt, but by March I still had just one sentence written and I realised that that was probably the best I could do. Every time I sat down to think about it I couldn't do anything but stare at the screen. We feel the loss of everyone in our lives, but her death hit me harder than that of any before. I spent five days a week with her, sometimes more, she was someone who would always make you part of her family. "Chris was the family and friend you needed, when even you didn't realise you needed it."

So yeah, the year didn't have the best of starts. The rest of the year was a fair mix of things...

Out And Aboutings

As always, I said to myself that I needed to do more things. And as always, I only vaguely achieved that. As I reached my third year of being in Bristol I have finally been to the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery (after several failed attempts previously). I've never felt like such a nerd, but the best bit is definitely the mezzanine floor with the historical maps on. Maps are fascinating, (I know I've crept into a whole new area of nerdery) it's really interesting to watch the progression of the area through the changes.

I did get a few other bits done in Bristol this year. Wildlife Photographer of the Year at M Shed, and the last new thing was the Aquarium. Neither of which were overly exciting. In the case of the latter, I'm not sure that I can take an aquarium seriously if there's plastic "coral" in the coral tank. Ooh and there was another trip to Bristol Zoo, and yet again didn't managed to pinch a Red Panda or a Meerkat.

Home in London we did a day of Open House, and it was wonderful to go round Temple. We did managed to see so much that we were well and truly over walking that day. If you get a chance then you should definitely go to the Fitzrovia Chapel, it is one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen.

I ventured over to Wales to see the Doctor Who Experience before it closed. There was a great nerdy rush from going there, but I really wished I'd had more time to enjoy it. It definitely would have involved a repeat visit if it was still open.

Harry Potter also featured heavily in cultural events. A trip to Lacock Abbey and the chance to see some of the places used for filming, then the History of Magic exhibition in London, which hopefully you've already read my waffle about.

Popcorn Moments

Obviously it's easy to keep track of my movie going habits if you have to be stalking me on... well, anything. The count on movies this year is at 80... that means I watched a movie every 4.56 days. I'm going to try and knock it up a notch next year... really abandon what social life I have left and basically move into the cinema.

I'm not going to expand on films here, I will bore you with a run down of my favourites at some point.

Adult Achievements Unlocked

2017 was the year of getting other people to do things to my house. It was glorious not having to do it myself... although it does mean that I'm left with tasks that would be pointless to pay other people to do.

There was the bathroom:

After Irma stole my fence completely I got a shiny new wall too. It would be painted if I could make a decision about which colour. But for at least the next couple of months it's just going to be two random purple bricks among a sea of grey.

In other adult achievement news: I brought a Dyson because evidently I like to only hoover for 14 minutes in one stretch every two hours. I learnt how to successfully bleed a radiator without actually managing to make the room warmer. Lastly, I brought a slow cooker and am gradually learning the quirks of cooking things in it... top time, do NOT try and cook pizza in it... it's a ridiculous concept.

In conclusion

I've loved and lost. I've met some fantastic people, and some not so. I've been supported and I've been betrayed. I've realised some things and I've gradually forgotten others.

I'm slightly glad to see the back of 2017, it's all been so very tiring. But I'm looking forward to what 2018 has in store, and if we're going by random quizzes on the internet I'll be married/single/dog owner/learning a new language/travelling the world, and a selection of other ridiculous things.


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