Well… 2021 is almost at an end and all I can say is Thank the Pope! It’s been a rough, tough, and often downright shite, but it did have some good moments too. I made a few new friends, had quite a bit of freelance work for almost nine months doing social media postings for Where to Next, proofreading for local, Pegasus UK published, author, Sharon Brummer, writing some blogs for Noisy Digital, and when I got the dreaded plague, I got sick, and while it was bad, I know that it could have been so much worse. I didn’t get to blog as much as I would have liked, something I hope to rectify in 2022. Looking back…
I don’t remember where I was on New Year’s Eve. Honestly. What I do know is that I wasn’t awake at midnight. I returned to work mid-January, ready and fired up to face a new year –the enthusiasm waned rather quickly though.
A colleague of mine, Mandy, and her husband, Patrick celebrated the birth of their first child, Ethan. They waited a long time for Ethan, and that little boy stole the hearts of everyone in the office moments after the first photo was shared.
February was also a sad time for the maternal side of my family, as we lost Aunty Cathy to liver cancer. The Bean took it extremely hard, and there hasn’t been a day that The Bean hasn’t mentioned her. She misses her baby sister more than words can describe, and more than I can understand because I don’t have blood siblings.
This month marked a year of being locked down. What a ride it had already been up until then. Little did we know that we’d still be locked down for months to come. I shared a coffee with Trevor in celebration of his birthday, and got to meet his cute pug, Chanel.
The Toppie turned 74. He and I had lunch next to the ocean. The Bean didn’t join us as she wasn’t feeling well. Again, the weather was stunning.
Lisa and Karl had tried for a long time to fall pregnant, but due to medical complications, they ended up using a surrogate. Baby Luke was born last year, and this year I was fortunate enough to be present at his first birthday party, albeit for only a short time, due to prior commitments. Luke is a precious little boy, who was all smiles that day.
From time to time, when the moment strikes me, I do like to try something in the kitchen. In May I tried my hand at Corn, Potato and Coconut Soup. Something super easy, delicious, and that has guest thinking you’re a borderline gourmet 🙂
Oh yes, my phone also went swimming.
A favourite time of the year for me – my God daughter, Lily-Rose turns a year older. I had planned to visit her and her folks at their home in the Eastern Cape during our annual winter maintenance break, but the Covid numbers were up. The possibilities of increased lockdown restrictions were all over social media, so I decided against it. She turned four and has just got cuter and more precocious each day. I love my little ‘Mouse’.
I discovered the joy of Jack’s Bagels. It’s become a go-to for The Bean and I on a Sunday morning for brunch when The Toppie is on the road. We grab something delicious, and then go and sit at The Point watching the surfers, seals, fishermen, and swimmers.
Like April, I must have slept through the entire month. I will admit that months beginning with ‘A’ are usually not good for me.
My favourite month of the year because it’s when I celebrate my journey around the sun. This year though, there was less focus on me, but rather on The Bean and The Toppie who celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary on The Bean’s 75th birthday. We spent a few days at a local self-catering apartment with a magnificent view of the sea. We spotted a whale during an afternoon coffee on the verandah. We went to Déjà vu Vintage House for a high tea and a vintage movie. The next day we continued the festivities with another high tea at Betty’s Boutique Hotel. The time we spent together was something I will treasure forever.
Eliza treated me to a birthday feast at a local restaurant. I had tacos for the first time in my life. Oh my hat! I understand what the hype is about. I also had an Eton mess for dessert. Ridiculously sweet, but heavenly.
The first week of October I was a wreck. I found a lump in my breast. As is custom for my overthinking brain, I immediately thought the worst. It was an interesting journey and because of my situation, some colleagues spurred me into organizing a breast cancer awareness screening at work. Out of something which I experienced as awfully bad, something good came.
One Sunday The Bean, Toppie and I piled into my car and went in search of the murals at Friemersheim. It was a spectacular day, and we found many (but not all) of the colourful walls.
For the first time in a decade, I was asked to work overtime with some other colleagues. It turned out to be a fun evening, and I realized that I’m fortunate to have the kind of colleagues I do. We work like a well-oiled machine, with a lot of laughter in between. When we left the office, shortly before 19h00, we were blessed with an exquisite sunset.
It had been literal years since I’d last seen ‘die Skatties’ (The Treasures). They are friends who live in George, which is about 50 Km away. I spent a night with them at the end of November where I had so much fun. We had a delightful braai (kind of like a barbeque, only better), and their son showed me the cute chameleons in their garden. It was the only time this entire year that I went to bed after midnight. We’ve made a pact to do something like this more often. It was great to reconnect with them.
I reached the final month of the year by nothing but Grace. There were many occasions during this year when my energy levels were at an all-time low, and it was during those times that my annual December holiday was all that was keeping me going. Then, two days before our annual closure I got Covid and had to go into mandatory 10-day isolation. That meant the plans I had with The Bean and The Toppie for Christmas had to change. We ended up having Christmas on the 29th. It was something even more special.
During the time I was in isolation, I was humbled by my amazing friends. There were many that offered to stop at the pharmacy, the grocery store, to do ‘driveway visits’. Others called every day to check-in, keeping my spirits up. Christmas Day two friends dropped gifts at my front door. Sure, Christmas was different, but it was memorable, and in a way, so much more special than any of its predecessors.
Also, I had a cute little pet for a day, maybe less. I don’t know how long Lightning Gonzalez was in The Cave. I tried to catch him, hence the name, but having no success, I just left the front door and windows open, hoping he’d return to his little field mouse family.
What 2022 holds is anyone’s guess, but here’s hoping it will be a better one. #fingerscrossed