2017: A Year in Review

I’ve made it, another year of wisdom under my belt. Well, what a year. Unlike last year, it’s been a year of settling and continuity. For the first time in years, nothing drastic has changed in my life. All those who began the year with me are still firmly in my life and are likely to be wedged in for a while. I still live in the same city, i’m in the same relationship and i’ve got the same job. All of this is great news because it means that nothing has gone horrendously wrong. I’ve avoided a mental breakdown for another year – good for me!

So, in detail. I’m still a journalist at the same magazine, and I actually think i’m doing fairly well. I had no formal training, so this job really was a ‘throw ‘er in the deep end’ deal. In January I still felt very new and overwhelmed at times, however I end the year feeling a lot more confident in my abilities and, although i’ve got a hell of a way to go before I win a Pulitzer prize, i’m definitely not as crap as I used to be. I’m earning a little more money than I was at the start of 2017 too – although i’m still way off making millions. Perhaps next year, eh.

I’ve lived in London now for 14 months (where has the time gone?!), and i’m enjoying it more and more the better I get to know it. The city feels like it’s shrinking as i’m slowly filling in the map. I still miss Brighton, of course, but for now, i’m very content living in London and certainly can’t see myself doing a big move any time soon.

On the subject of moving, back in March Rai and I moved into our own flat near Caledonian road, approximately a mile east of Camden. It’s the most at home i’ve felt for many, many years, and although it is absolutely tiny, we both love it. Unless our landlord ups the rent next year, we’ll be staying put for another 12 months. Our three year anniversary is next month (again, where the hell has the time gone?) and in many ways it feels as though we’ve never left the ‘honeymoon’ stage. Our relationship really is fantastic, and moving in together has brought us even closer. I’m extraordinarily confident in us going into the new year.

On the whole, i’ve felt pretty good this year, much, much better than last year. I’ve been utterly rubbish at exercising, but that’s relatively easy to fix with a few tweaks here and there. It’s been a weird one family-wise; my grandad and grandma passed away, which was obviously very sad, and my parents moved from Essex to Worthing, meaning seeing them is a little more challenging. But that’s ok. I feel like I grew up a lot this year and that i’ve kind of got my shit together. Now all I need is my own house and i’m ballin’.

Apart from all the boring adult shit I just talked about, I had buckets and buckets of fun this year. I went to Rome and to Gran Canaria, I visited friends in Brighton and Kent, I spent many, many hours drinking in my favourite pubs, I explored London and took thousands of photos (although a lot of them are pretty terrible), I ate in loads of ridiculously nice restaurants because, werk perks, and I became better friends with a lot of people I work with, who I now consider to be among my nearest and dearest.

In my 2016 review, I said I wanted everyone to “calm the fuck down”, which they have a bit, I think. The world certainly feels less nuts than it did a year ago. I said I wanted to visit a couple of interesting countries, which I did, and I said I wanted to get to know London much better, which I have. Importantly however, I said I wanted to continue to be “sickeningly loved up, drink lots of wine, have lots of laughs, and be utterly have completely merry”, which I am proud to say, I have achieved.

So, what do I want from 2018? It’s a tough call because continuity makes a nice change but i’m very conscious of not getting too comfortable and allowing time to pass me by without achieving much. I’ll write something proper on resolutions in the new year (i’m a sucker for a good resolution) but overall, next year i’d like something big to happen with work, either in the form of a decent promotion or a job offer at a magazine, newspaper or broadcaster that I can’t refuse. Really, this year is all about the career. I’ve laid the foundations, I think it’s now just time to put everything I have into it. Of course I’d also like to end 2018 as happy as I am now, and i’d like my relationship to stay as strong as it is.

So to those reading this, a big happy new year to you, I hope yours was as good as mine, and if it wasn’t, I hope that 2018 brings you health, happiness, and a jolly big headache on January 1st.


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