Ooops, not sure what is going on with the numbering. Either it was a leap year (can´t remember) or I´ve screwed them up somehow. Anyway, I can´t be arsed to figure out why, it´s not really important.
Last time I did a photo a day in 2012 I wrote a massive long last post, reviewing the year and doing some oscar-style thank yous. But that was a very different year. It was the year I got divorced and a strange year where I was single for the first time in my adult life and I was just trying to figure out who I actually was, because I´d lost my identity.
There were a lot of new things back then, and I guess that hasn´t changed, I still love trying new things. I tried to say yes to things that either interested me, scared me or sounded intriuging. That´s still pretty much the case now, but I feel more sure of myself. I´m still figuring out who I am, but that will never stop. You´re always learning and changing, it´s one of the ace things about being a human. We learn and grow and change constantly, even if we don´t want to.
This year has been an absolute blast though, I´ve done some brilliant things, met some brilliant people and forged deeper friendships with people I haven´t known for that long. I have absolutely adored living in Cheltenham, and I couldn´t think of a better place to live right now. I´ve been here two years now and still feel like I´m only just scratching the surface. So much more to look forward to. It´s not all been great, but in the law of averages no whole year can be. But, I still wake up every day so grateful for my lot and so pleased with where I am now, compared to back in 2011.
Thanks to everyone who has been a part of my 2016. You´ve all made it what it was, and I wouldn´t be half the person I am if you all weren´t around me. No (wo)man is an island, so they say.
Here´s to a happy, healthy, active and outdoors 2017!
Well! No luggage so we assume it will come tomorrow and so will stay another night in Puerto Montt, and decided to make the most of today by having a little day trip to Isla Tenglo, a little island just off the city accessible by boat. We wandered pretty much all round the island in the glorious sun…although as I don´t have any toiletries I didn´t put any sun cream on…..ouch ouch ouch, the sun here is fierce, and I am stupid.
The bikes have arrived! It wasn´t a scam, they do actually exist! But! No bike repair kit (as promised) and one flat tyre. So, Enrique came back with the kit, changed the tyre and we’re pretty much good to go (well, when my luggage turns up and after we load up with food).
In the meanwhile, the bikes reside in the hotel kitchen…
After hours and hours of travelling on buses, airports, planes, I sit in Santiago airport waiting for my last flight (flight number 3) to Puerto Montt. I know that my luggage isn´t with me, but I´ve been told it will turn up tomorrow. I am hot, sticky, tired and ready for a shower. Hopefully the hotel will have some toiletries.
Flight day! Time to jet off to Chile for a little cycling adventure! This disappearing off to the Southern hemisphere after Christmas to escape January seems to be starting a tradition. I started 2016 in South Africa in the sun climbing a mountain, and I´m leaving 2016 hopefully also in the sun, in South America. I´m just looking forward to being outside for most of the day, instead of having to hide away inside with the heating on.
Spent this afternoon getting all my stuff ready for Chile, as well as having a bit of a dance around my flat and pottering around. Decided to get some fresh air and exercise by having a walk up Leckhampton Hill to catch the sunset. Managed to just get it, and had the top of the hill to myself to watch the oranges and yellows turn to pinks and blues and spot the trails from the planes in the sky.
After a hectic month (December always is) it was nice to get a bit of solitude and peace up high. Always makes me feel a bit calmer and chilled out.
Friends Christmas was hosted at Marsha and Rich’s place in Bristol today. After the events of the last two days I have to admit I was slightly jaded so it was a relatively alcohol-free day for me, but to be fair, Christmas Day usually is.
What a lovely, chilled out day we had. Apart from the afternoon walk we had out to the Clifton suspension bridge we spent the day just eating (we pretty much grazed constantly) and playing games. I’ve had Articulate for years but every time I play it the laughs always come from either a) the weird descriptions people come up with, b) the lack of understanding between partners “do you not know me AT ALL”, c) the hand gestures “just pointing and moving your hand does NOT HELP or d) the helpful hints everyone says after the round “you should have said ‘XYZ’, I would have got it then”.
Thank you so much to Marsha and Rich for hosting me and Sam in your boooootiful new flat, so lovely to spend the day with all you guys.
Not going to lie, going to BMF was a bit of a struggle this morning. I was still drunk. Then Bev had the wine out by 9.15am. Hair of the dog, she said. It will help, she said. Still trying to work out whether I agree with her or not.
Drunk or not, it was a fun session which did involve some running around and exercise-type stuff but mainly for me it also just involved a lot of laughing. We all love Mark’s sessions. He somehow manages to make them so much fun but hard but yet ones where we all push ourselves, rather than being pushed my someone else per se.
An interesting end to the session involved me finding a penguin finger puppet which must now accompany me to Chile, Frank Skinner being accosted for a photo with us, me getting awarded the ‘Biggest Bluffer’ award (hmmm…) and then mulled wine and stories of Mark and Sarah’s interesting parenting techniques.
Bev, Dave and I then decided it would be a MOST EXCELLENT idea to go for cocktails afterwards.
At 9pm that night it dawned on me that that was probably NOT a most excellent idea when I finally got home and realised I’d just topped up from yesterday and probably would only just be prolonging the hangover…..
Ah, it’s Christmas innit? Much fun and laughs were had.
This is the ONLY photo I had from today so is the default picture I have to use. Taken because the chimney sweep hat came out so I took a cheeky selfie on the way to the pub as it’s a rare appearance. The plan was to have a couple in the pub with my friend James then head to the carols in Pittville Park.
A couple turned into the whole day drinking, with all sense of time forgotten and no thought to getting any other photos for the day. Pity, as I know how much James loves a selfie.
Or I could have taken a picture of James’s friends Pippa and Ben who were just fabulous. Or his Nan who was lovely (memory gets a little hazy from here on), or his sister and friends in the last pub we went to (definitely can’t remember much of that apart from it was all very jolly). Or my neighbour Aelred who knew what time I got home, even if I can’t remember. Me on Saturday morning “I don’t know what time I got in”. A: “11pm”. Me: “Oh was it? How do you know?”. A: “You were pretty loud.”. Me: “Oh. Oops. Sorry.”
So tonight should have been BMF and then a recce pack to check I’d got everything from my trip. Feeling a bit tired after last nights partying so tonight was actually watching Black Mirror and watching the fairy lights sparkle.