Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Sunday, January 1, 2012
I knew that my relocation to the U.K. for a year was going to have some impact on my life afterwards. It certainly had a significant impact last time I did it in 2003. But this time I was just looking for a change of scenery, not changes to major life plans.
2011 was the year I first visited New Zealand, Spain and America. It was the year that I lived alone for the first time (and enjoyed it). It was the first time in my adult life that I have been unemployed. It was the first time that I've lost sleep and well-being over money concerns. It was the year I discovered how hard it is to build a life in a town where you know no one. I discovered that internet dating in Oxford is pretty much the same as internet dating in Canberra, i.e. largely a waste of time.
My teaching work was as varied as it could have been. I worked at a school in the middle of one of Europe's biggest council estates, and I worked at one that costs £30 000 a year to attend. I tutored adults and kindergartners. I came to understand Australia in a completely different way, only after seeing the struggle other countries are in. I saw a whole lot of amazing musicians and some very impressive theatre. I managed to immerse myself in London despite my tight budget. Most importantly, I fell crazy in love. I lived with a partner for the first time and discovered that it wasn't at all a challenge.
It’s the first of January, 2012. I’m sitting in a hotel room in Las Vegas. I've been travelling through America for the past month. I fly back to Australia in a few days, but I'll only be there till the end of January. Instead of going back to my regular job and my regular life, I'm returning to England which is where I’ll spend this year. Myself 12 months ago could not have predicted this.
I’m not where I thought I’d be. But that's just fine. Because 2011 was pretty amazing and I suspect 2012 will be too.
Happy New Year.