What A Year!

3d Jahreswechsel von 2016 auf 2017

Knowing that I’m not going to be available for the next Tuesday which is the last Tuesday of 2016, I thought I’ll make a summary for this year right now. Seeing things in hindsight would make 2016 not just another blessed year but the year which I have grown most compared to the last 10 years of my life. This epiphany is probably backed up by a scientific suggestion that our brain is fully developed at the age of 23, and that’s how old I am (considering that 2016 isn’t over yet). I started off this year by doing something I truly enjoy but not to the extent of making a career out of it, (having said that, I’m open to possibilities), and that is hosting. Throughout the year, I’ve gained more teaching experience by serving in a national school as a student teacher and completed my studies in early September. After college, I struggled with the common identity crisis and sadly got into a “mild” depression but tried my best to walk out from it. The central theme of this depression was that the pressure of commitment to studies was suddenly taken off and I was left with practically nothing to make my everyday life seem worthwhile. But thank God that I was not alone and the fact that I knew that I was not alone kept me going. I did experience the denial stage where I constantly kept myself busy and distracted so I didn’t have to face my fears but sooner or later I realized that my energy was draining and so I had to really make an appointment with my monsters. After battling with the demons inside of me, I was lucky to have found myself again. Finally, I ended my year by nailing at a job interview. The timing I must say, couldn’t be more perfect.

To make it a tradition, I would like to share some of the random matters which I hope will seal this year beautifully.

Books I have read in 2016

Last year, I remember complaining about not reading a single novel, so guess what, this year I’ve read 9 novels, 1 comic and 2 non-fictions. To compensate last year for not reading any of the books of my favorite author, Stephen King; this year I finished reading his latest trilogy along with an old novel,  Revival.

  1. The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom
  2. Adultery by Paulo Coelho
  3. Manuscript Found in Accra by Paulo Coelho
  4. Are You Smart Enough to Work at Google by William Poundstone (Second attempt)
  5. The Perfect Fit by Jenna Sutton
  6. This is Love by Caroline Nolan
  7. My Japanese Husband Thinks I’m Crazy by Grace Buchele Mineta
  8. Everybody’s Normal Till You Get to Know Them by John Ortberg
  9. Revival by Stephen King
  10. Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
  11. Finders Keepers by Stephen King
  12. End of Watch by Stephen King

Great Apps I have downloaded in 2016

These are the apps which I just have to recommend.

  1. BookShout (Free E-books available here)
  2. Curious (One day one workout for the brain)
  3. Cold Turkey Writer (Coolest thing ever, helped me to write without distractions)

Countries I have traveled to in 2016

Singapore – First time exploring the Universal Studio. Vibrant city life indeed. Grabbing a beer and sitting at the river bank. Awesome.

Thailand – Went to Bangkok (wrote a blog about it, Chapter 4)

Japan – Instead of enduring the economic class of AirAsia for 7 hours straight, I had the opportunity to take a transit to Shanghai and then to Tokyo with one of the China Airlines. As you know, I learned some of the basics of Japanese and so I was more confident in speaking the language with the natives. Basically, I went to the same places, namely Tokyo and Niigata, but explored deeper to the outskirts of Niigata and had the time of my life in Disneyland.

Favorite Sitcom of the Year 2016

Did not really get the luxury of time to watch many sitcoms this year but I’m going to vote for The Big Bang Theory Season 10, jokes are getting old sometimes but love the family.

Areas I’ve made progress (albeit just a little bit)

  1. My driving skills (My car has hit a new record, traveled roughly 30000km, as practice makes perfect but I’m still going to be alert and cautious on the road)
  2. Proofreading (One of the many ways I killed time during my post-college months was proofreading journal papers and theses, I got better at academic writing than ever before)
  3. Cooking (I’ve gone from cooking basic normal dishes to mix and match and just be creative with whatever’s in the fridge and the kitchen #justbcozican)
  4. Parking (Side parking, reverse parking, you name it, I can do those already! Yay for me)
  5. Japanese (I’ve conversed with the native speakers a little while I was in Japan, managed a blog on writing diary entries in Japanese – much to learn still)

Areas I need to improve in 2017

  1. Exercising (Last year I was proud of jogging regularly, in 2016 however, I did not step into the gym for more than what my fingers can count, gained tons of weight, looked chubby for almost all the photos I took, easily catch a cold, sit too long in front of my laptop or reading – gotta get the muscles moving!)
  2. Swimming (I have been to the pool more in 2016 than the last 5 years of my life combined, learned to swim a bit but still need to get a hang in exchanging breaths more consistently)
  3. Japanese (Need to work on it more as in investing more time getting the exposure of the language)
  4. Teaching English (Wanna apply my experience of learning a foreign language myself to assist my students)
  5. Playing Ukulele (Gotta stay out of my comfort zone and press more new chords to keep up with this instrument)

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