I bought a new Moleskine diary this weekend. But before I shelve the old one and start filling these crisp new pages with plans and appointments, I thought I’d have a flick through and recap my 2015 highlights because, well, it’s the thing to do as you start a new year isn’t it?
- I spent some precious time with my Nanna on her last trip to Malta. ‘Last’ because as she’s in her late eighties it’s very unlikely she’ll make the long journey over from Australia again. I also got to hang out with my awesome aunty Anna – she’s always so much fun and we have the best talks.
- I landed my first full-time job in PR. This has been a goal ever since I quit my radio career and moved to the UK, and a casual conversation at a bar for a friend’s birthday a good 12 months ago actually led me to this role. The next time I consider bailing on social plans, I’m going to remind myself of this wonderful encounter, and reconsider.
- I flexed the talky – i.e. I did some voiceover work and had a weekly UK/Europe news chat with Justin on i98fm. It was really fun to get back behind a microphone! I hope to do more of it this year.
- I went back to Australia for the first time in almost two years. Time truly has flown – how have I been in London for now approaching THREE years?! What struck me when I visited Oz back in May though was how so much hadn’t changed. I mean, friends have rings on their fingers where they didn’t have them before and some girlfriends now have bumps and others babies but, there was something really comforting about slipping back into old conversations with them, visiting the BJJ clubs I used to frequent and feeling like it was just another training session, seeing my dad in his usual chair in front of the TV at home and chatting through the day’s events with mum and my sisters. I was a complete noob on the train and in shopping centres though: if I stood on the right side of the escalator instead of the left once, I did it a thousand times! I was happy to find that while I thoroughly enjoyed my trip home and could have extended it for another week or two, the visit didn’t leave me pining for a move back for good.
- I turned 30. I’m totally still scratching my head at this, to be honest. How did 30 happen? When did I make it here? Why do I not feel like I should be 30 yet? Is it a total cliche to say that? Maybe it’s societal – and my own – expectations of where I should be and what I should have/own at 30 that I’m clearly not at/possessing, maybe I just really don’t feel “my age.” I have read a lot of comments/articles about how secure people tend to feel in themselves in their thirties. I certainly feel like I have some catching up to do.
- I went to another BJJ Bonanza. Yes! The super fun women’s BJJ camp in Copenhagen that I did in 2013 is still going strong, and I was able to make it back in October. This time the camp featured Mackenzie Dern and she is seriously the nicest, most grounded 22 year-old I have ever met. Along with teaching us some great moves over the course of the weekend, what sticks out for me about Mackenzie is just how chilled she is. Between sessions she would sit around with a group of girls, happily sharing stories of her notable fights and telling us the ‘real stories’ behind some of the headlines. And if she wasn’t doing that, Mackenzie was taking charge of the gym’s speakers, flipping through her favourite tracks on her phone and generally just being rad. I also got to catch up with a bunch of ladies that I met at the BJJ Globetrotters camp in 2014.
- I ended the year with the same guy I started it with and in the same place, Strasbourg, where I spent the Christmas and New Year break. My relationship is totally a highlight and continues to be. I’m looking forward to whatever’s up next in this long distance adventure of ours.