I wasn’t sure if I was going to do a year-in-review post for 2022.
As with blogging anniversary posts, I haven’t done a yearly wrap up since 2018. Everything was on fire in Australia in 2019 and then obviously stuff was happening in 2020 and 2021, but it was all kind of bleak and sad.
As for 2022, is it a year I – anyone – really wants to remember?
Plus, personal blog posts kinda feel like a thing of the past. A lot of bloggers I used to follow have either disappeared into the ether, or are writing purely SEO-driven posts. Which is a bit sad as these are my favourite type of posts to write and I really loved snooping on everyone else’s.
Well, you gotta be the change you want to see in the world. I decided to try and make sense of the year that was 2022, or at least write down some thoughts so I have something to reflect on in the future.
Ha! Well. Confession time.
I haven’t actually left Australia for years now. Four to be exact.
In 2019 I was all ‘I’M GOING TO SPEND THIS YEAR EXPLORING MY OWN BACKYARD’ and then 2020 happened and well… we know the end to that sad story.
I’ve had plenty of friends who have jetted overseas this year (or come to Australia to visit, yay!) and I am both happy for and jealous of them.
I didn’t actually think I travelled that much this year, but as I sorted through my photos, I realised I was somewhat mistaken. There were some nice trips in Victoria to places like the Yarra Valley and Alpine region. And I spent a few weeks in NSW, which is always fine.
How I use my annual leave these days gets mostly dictated by people’s weddings. Which is very sweet and I’m not upset about this, because I love weddings and I LOVE love. It’s an honour to be invited to see people you care about tie the knot.
After having missed some major life events due to Melbourne’s lockdowns, I definitely don’t take it for granted.
That being said, I do look forward to taking a holiday to one of the many destinations on my TBV (to be visited?) list.
Of course, it is kismet when one of these destinations is at (or near) a wedding, so I’m hoping 2023 will bring some lovely moments overseas. I like living in Australia, but this does only increase after I’ve not been there for a spell.
My boyfriend and I did manage to squeeze in a five day trip to Adelaide, which was great! Well, despite a sinus infection on my part and a small mishap where I left my phone in an Uber on the way to the airport (we were reunited eventually by post).
Adelaide is as rad as I remember it being when I last visited and it was nice to get some content about the city on my blog.
Really, this year has been about getting reacquainted with Melbourne. And perhaps, learning to love it again.
It’s been a hard place to live these last few years, becoming the most locked down city in the world, at a time when pretty much everywhere else in Australia was continuing along as sort of semi-normal (or completely normal in Perth).
I know Sydney had lockdowns too in 2021 and I FEEL FOR YOUR GUYS but we did go through it first. And then continued to go through it, alongside you. Brothers in arms, we fought in ‘Nam and all that.
It’s been really lovely seeing Melbourne come back to life, although some of my favourite places are gone forever (RIP best Somalian restaurant in town). Those poor business owners.
It’ll take a bit longer for the city to completely bounce back, but it’s making a red-hot go of it, that’s for sure.
Books & movies
One real comfort this year has been books (as always) and movies.
As a dedicated word nerd, I read 180 books this year (not my record, which was 200 last year and such a pleasingly round number at that).
Reading has always brought me untold pleasure. I know some people really struggled with it during COVID, but not this girl, I just read more and more. What else was there to do, really?
One of the best things about being able to move around freely again, has been going to the movies! Melbourne has some fantastic independent cinemas and I really enjoy being able to frequent them once more.
Also equally enjoying the resurgence in horror films that’s taking place at the moment (thank you Jordan Peele and Ari Aster). It’s long been my favourite genre but you know, they’re not always very good. While I love a good slasher film (yup, sick in the head), there’s some really clever horror (or ‘elevated’ horror as it’s being called) being made at the moment and I’m here for it. Apart from the Halloween trilogy, which was kinda bad.
And the Barbie movie. That’ll be the cinematic highlight of 2023 for sure.
Walking & injuries
There’s been a few sucky elements to this year.
Changing relationships with loved ones. Dinosaurs trying to push us back to work, to the city, into the frenetic pace of ‘normality’ which is not a thing that exists as it was before COVID. Still having to cancel plans or miss out on things due to sickness.
Multiple, ongoing injuries has been a big one for me. I put my back out middle of 2021, while we were in another long lockdown and couldn’t do much about it. Since then, it’s been like a domino effect across my body. One thing gets better, another part collapses.
The worst injury has been my right foot. I woke up Christmas Eve in 2021 in an incredible amount of pain and it’s only really come good in the last month.
Which stunk for timing, because all I’ve wanted this year is to get out and walk. Melbourne is close to some phenomenally pretty hikes and it’s been super annoying, not being able to make the most of them for the last 12 months.
Something to never take for granted – being able to move freely, along with being able to leave the house!
Since my beloved Bentley died in 2018, I haven’t had a dog to call my own. This changed in 2021, when the Boy came into my life.
Rescuing a German shepherd is… not the easiest path to take. He had little to no training, social issues, anxiety, health dramas, you name it. Almost two years later and countless hours of work, it’s like having a completely different animal in the house (most of the time – he still has his moments, although don’t we all?).
He’s become my best friend and constant companion (really, he follows me everywhere) and I love him to bits. I’ve been dog mad my entire life and have always wanted one of my own and even though it causes a bit of extra drama with travel, time management and such, I wouldn’t want things any other way.
And best of all, my boyfriend has been converted to a dog person (or loves our dog, at least), which feels like a small victory. Now, how do you feel about some backyard chickens, my darling?
I didn’t really blog much, to at all during 2020 and 2021. I just couldn’t. The part of my brain that lives to write atrophied due to general sadness and lack of stimulation.
However, mid-year 2022, I got the bug again. And since then, I’ve published 26 posts (including this one) and rewritten a ton more.
Overall, it’s been a nice return to blogging and I’m happy with the content I’ve been putting together. I’ve got no shortage of ideas for posts and content strategies, it’s just finding the time to get them written.
Thoughts on 2023
Really, who knows what the hell 2023 will bring. Or what fresh hell, if the last few years are anything to go by.
I hope it’s a better year than the last few, but we are still kinda in the pandemic (no matter what world governments might say) and it feels like a weird time in general.
I saw a meme a couple of years ago that said ‘I’m tired of being a part of history in the making’ and feel that sums up the vibe perfectly.
Regardless of the weirdness, I hope you have a Happy New Year however you spend it.
I have no wild plans, which I’m rather delighted by. It’s a beautiful summer’s day in Melbourne and the plan is for a BBQ dinner, a couple of glasses of rosé perhaps, followed by a walk in the morning and a dip in the ocean.
Simple. But, blissful.
How has your 2022 been? What are your plans for 2023, if you have any?