I wrote this and forgot about it but here it is. It does exist.
So…2016 happened. Time isn’t real, but I guess I have to agree to our shared delusion of like months and years and stuff. (Sidebar: Want to feel like time isn’t real? Try explaining daylight savings time to a Japanese high school student.) We have now decided that it is 2017, and that means it is time for more reflection and goals for the new year.
2016 was rough. I spent a lot of it in a really bad place. Not so long ago (Or maybe it was? Time is still hard) someone asked why I no longer post recipes and the answer is of course depression my man. I’ve just successfully started cooking food with vegetables for myself again this week, which is exciting but a pretty good reflection of how the last few months of 2016 were for me compared to how I’m feeling 2017 will be.
Looking back at my blog posts from the year, nearly all of them mention the hard time I was having. That’s fine. That happened. I also did a lot of cool things.
Chronologically, here are the coolest things I did in 2016:
- Modeled for an English guidebook for the area
- Went to the Numazu Sweets Run
- Saw and got to talk to Mary Lambert in Tokyo
- Danced in the Kanaya Tea Festival
- Saw a lot of cherry blossoms
- Went to Seoul at some point?
- Started the Shizuoka Writing Circle
- Helped host the Atami Beach Olympics
- Passed the JLPT N3
- Became one of the section editors for Connect Magazine
- Watched the sunrise from the top of Mt. Fuji
- Finished one year in Japan
- Went to Disneyland with my family
- Visited my best friend in Seattle
- Started a fiction blog
- Stopped a fiction blog
- Went back to Kyoto
- Went back to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter—I mean Osaka
- Contributed to Tofugu for their article on Thanksgiving in Japan
- Won NaNoWriMo!
- Went to Tokyo Disney and DisneySea
- Saw SPYAIR in Nagoya
- Finished the year clubbing in Tokyo
- Turned 24 (wow double 24! Double cool!)
- Also I lost like 45 lbs (not quite my goal of 50 but have you ever had Pringles?)
These were just the biggest events of 2016, but there were so many other wonderful things that happened this year. Just spending time with my friends and meeting amazing people volunteering in Shimada has been a treat. A lot of the best parts of 2016 didn’t make it to the blog because I didn’t have time or too many things happened at once and I couldn’t choose. I’d like to say I wrote about them in my written journal so the memories are there somewhere, but that is also not the case. As long as we have Instagram there will be some sort of record, at least.
My resolutions for 2016 were basically be nice to myself and do cool things, and I feel like I accomplished that. Go me!
So coming up in 2017:
- I finished my grad school applications! Now we wait for results. Before too long I should have an idea of where I’ll be heading this fall, which is exciting and terrifying.
- Sapporo! In less than a month we will be going to the snow festival in Hokkaido. Follow my Instagram if you want to keep up to date on those adventures.
- In May: Thailand! I’m finally getting the big one off of my list and I can’t wait!
- July: I finish my second and final year in Japan and move on to whatever comes next.
Last year was my first and only full calendar year living in Japan. It was a great and challenging experience for me and I am such a different person than the one I was at the beginning of it. I’m feeling really good about 2017. I think this year will be huge for me. I’ll be turning 25, starting grad school, and moving countries once again. I don’t know what all will happen, but I look forward to sharing the adventure with all of you!