2012: The year in review.

fireworks

2012 was a good year. One full of ups and downs, for sure, but also one full of friends, family, laughter, fun, great adventures, and above all else, hope.

It was also my second full year of blogging — an exercise I still find enormously fulfilling, but just as challenging. As the new year dawns, I won’t make formal resolutions, but my unofficial goal is to be more disciplined about writing. Having all of you read my rambling musings and share your comments, stories and encouragement is certainly great motivation, and I appreciate your loyalty so much. You could be reading so much else on the web, and it’s a honor you choose to visit little ole me.

Here’s a little recap of my year in review:

In 2012, I posted 53 new posts and 435 new photos (phew!).

The most popular posts:

The top things you searched to find me:

You came from:

  • Facebook.com
  • Yahoo.com
  • Twitter.com
  • Blogher.com
  • WordPress.com

You visited from 52 (!) countries, mostly from the United States, United Kingdom and South Africa.

The most popular day to visit was January 14, when you read On the road again.

The post that received the most comments was London, Day 1: On Arrival.

It looks like I need to travel more!

On this eve of New Year’s Eve, I wish you the best in 2013. Thanks for reading, and I can’t wait to see what the year brings, for all of us.

Cheers!

The next time.

Last week, a former coworker of mine, Regina, passed away from breast cancer. She was 34. I can’t say that we were especially close, but we were more than acquaintances. Friendly acquaintances, I guess. After I moved away from NYC, I saw her once when I visited and we exchanged Facebook messages as recently as a couple of years ago. By that time, I knew she had been diagnosed but was improving. She invited me to her walks and events, and I watched the “Rally for Regina” messages and photos pour in through Facebook. I got updates on her through our mutual friend every so often, but I had no idea that her condition had become so dire.

So when I got the email about her passing, I was surprised and sad. We tend to say typical things when someone dies: “She was kind.” “She had the biggest smile and the biggest heart.” “She was the life of the party.” “She would do anything for anyone.” But, really, Regina was all of those things. I can still hear her booming laugh and voice as clear as day, five years later. The tragedy of Regina’s passing didn’t truly hit me until this morning, when I read her obituary. I remembered that we were fellow Geminis, and bonded to some degree over that. But when I saw her birthdate, it came into focus — I am exactly one year and five days older than Regina. That’s how much more time I’ve been allotted. Continue reading

Reflections of the way life used to be.

I have just realized, as we head toward Christmas and another turn of the year, that 2011 has been quite a transitional year. Most of my pursuits and priorities in December were actually unfathomable to me back in January.

I mean, Oliver joined me in March.

I went to South Africa in May — and if you had told me that I would cross the equator twice to Australia and South Africa in one calendar year, I would have rolled my eyes at you.

I got a new job in July.

Then a couple of weeks ago I (finally) finished my MBA after 3+ years of nose to the grindstone and personal sacrifices. I will desperately miss the learning and the family I found there … but maybe not for a few more months.
Keep reading »

Back to life, back to reality.

Happy 2011!

I hope you are all getting back into the swing of life after the holidays. Mondays are a slap in the face under normal circumstances, but they’re so much worse after two weeks of travel and time off. I’m pretty sure I’m already re-exhausted.

Did you all have a fun New Year’s Eve? I have to state that I am usually no fan of that holiday — I’ve literally done everything you can think of to “celebrate,” from throwing a party at my house to paying $300 to stand in a loud, crowded NYC club, to dining out, to sitting on my couch (or even sleeping). It’s always a little bit of a letdown. This year I rang in 2011 with good friends, lots of cheer and a few bottles of wine and champagne — a perfect night, and the best NYE in quite awhile. 2011 sounds like an odd year, and it doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, but I survived my flight home on 1/1/11 in seat 11A, so I took that as a positive harbinger of things to come. Keep reading »