Wow,*rubs palms together* where do I even start? I wanted to skip this but it became a nagging thought, so here we are.
A lot of wonderful things actually happened this year. Despite a temporary melt-down and coming too close to the dark side.
- I quit Facebook and left Instagram indefinitely. One day, I woke up from a bad dream and decided to DELETE Facebook. Now I enjoy seeing people’s puzzled faces when I tell them that I don’t have Facebook. As for Instagram, I deactivated it, though somewhere out there is my black and white Instagram, a reminder of my “dark times”. I’m not sure if I will reinstate Instagram but I don’t really miss it. It helps relieve my general anxiousness to be honest.
- Fangirl way of life – Michael Buble, Taylor Swift, Audrey Hepburn, Harry Potter and Star Wars – my heart is alive, blood pumping, wallet was crying though but I regret nothing! Well maybe except that time I didn’t fly to Singapore for the 1989 World Tour. This was the year that I was unabashed for my love for Taylor Swift. You can’t ignore her anyway. This was the year I rekindle my love for MB, HP, and SW. Audrey Hepburn made me cry again.
- Going broke for travel – I ran so close my bank account depletion, at some point I was afraid for my life but the experiences I got was priceless. I’m willing to do it again.
- Getting to hang out with my cousins from Australia – they came in April for a vacation and that basically transported me to the days where we ever care about is TV and cartoons, never minding boys and love. Carefree days that I still miss, and even cried over during the time I let love in again only to be left crushed (but not so much actually).
- Getting want you want and finding out it’s not so great after all – sometimes the universe will relent and give you want you so want, only to find out that it was never really meant for you thus learning a lesson the hard way. Pain is a cruel but powerful teacher.
- Leaving a job that I had for 9 years for a new one – It was a period of darkness, feeling stuck and useless and incompetent. Burnout. I practically grew up in that company but maybe because I experienced loss and the magic of beginning again I moved out.
- Celebrating friendship – this year I celebrated a year of being reunited with a friend and at this point, you better believe to the saying that everything happens for a reason. Cos I’m sold.
- Getting close and personal with my mild anxiety – plus existential crisis, dark times friends, dark times I tell you. But it was a storm that I survived. And I know that I am not the same but that is okay because I grew up and that’s much better.
- Meeting so many new people and some became friends – others became a lesson – when I was having an existential crisis I actually made new friends. So that was great. I also got to meet passionate and brave souls and they have influenced me to live life more fiercely.
- Bar-hopping and staying out too late in Hongdae with Couchsurfers! – Oh boy! it was so fun, with the right group it was enjoyable. After some epic Korean BBQ, we went to this VINLY BAR. I had soda. LOL. Then another night, we went to this unnamed bar in Sinchon for Soju cocktails, then walked to another unnamed bar (that served San Miguel) where we took home free CDs, back to the Vinyl Bar. We went home at around 4am?
- I tried Couchsurfing in Korea and it was the best travel experience ever! I now have legit friends in Korea plus France and Belgium.
- Went alone to travel in Seoul for the Audrey Hepburn exhibit and wow I get it. I’m in.
- I went to Seoul twice THIS YEAR and that is a big deal for me, also I may have a problem?
- I remember writing Japan in 2015 in my travel list and
fuckyeahit happened! Basically, Japan resurrected all my childhood dreams. I stayed for an entire day in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, saw the Tokyo Tower (yes that orange thing I’ve been seeing in Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura), crossed the Shibuya Scramble Crossing and lost count of the times I did. Ate legit sushi, ramen and katsu. Pet a deer. Wore a kimono.Stayed in a residential neighborhood.
- I went to Cebu and met my “lil brother” Karl. I also went to the beach and had a temporary pet cat.
- I got the hang of brush calligraphy! Kinda regret getting all those nibs now.
- Attended a watercolor workshop for free
- Got a ukulele after seeing Coeli’s post, and actually learned how to play it it!
- Sushi and actual raw fish – I used to steer clear away from sushi but because I want to prepare my palette for legit sushi in Japan, I bit the bullet and actually liked Nigiri a lot. When I went to Japan I ate raw salmon and tuna and wow, I think I went to heaven. The downside is I get insatiable cravings for nigiri every now and then, but Japan totally spoiled me and sushi in Manila is just not the same anymore.
- Liking vodka mixes – okay so call it peer pressure or just plain hell yeah I’ll try that, I eased my way to alcohol via juice+sprite spiked with vodka.
- Innumerable pizza slices – like for real, I ate so many pizza this year! My favorite is the Pancetta with Apples and Ricotta Pizza from Balboa.
- Bingsu – snow in a cup, that instantly deposits happy hormones in every spoonful. It’s a korean dessert of shaved iced that resemble snow and topped with milk and fruits.
- Ice Cream Madness – so during the first quarter of the year, all I can think about eating is Ice Cream! (I scream, you scream, gimme, gimme that ice cream!) When I was in Korea in March it was still cold but I kept eating ice cream. Omo, macaron ice cream, I sorely miss!
- Soju and flavored soju! – okay more like soju cocktail, but ohmygawd! Those flavored soju that was offered during Summer in Korea was amazing!
Music – aside from TS 1989 I listened to these songs/albums/artists
- Ryan Adams – How Much Light and In the Dark – perfect for crying in the dark. LOL. no joke tho.
- Ryan Adam’s 1989 – Out of the Woods. How You Get The Girl. It was like Ryan Adams took a knife and pierce it to my heart. His covers had more depth and feelings.
- The Neon Hour -B.P. Valenzuela in general – electro pop lyrical genius in the form of a beary cute barista bear.
- E•MO•TION – jumping late in the bandwagon actually but this album was the OST to my Japan trip. LOL.
- DCFC – No Room in Frame *cries*
- Coeli San Luis – it was enchanting to see someone play using a CELLO and her voice reminded me so much of Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine. Captivated is an understatement when I listen to her music.
- Red Velvet – it all started with Ice Cream Cake, that song made me dance again. Happiness and Dumb Dumb are also my favorites. Red Velvet is KPOP band and they are talented. I MEAN ALL.
- Girls Generation’s Lionheart – yep, that funny dance move and video got me hooked, and to my delight my 4 year old niece bugged her mom to download the song and played it on loop while I was in Japan.
- Damien Rice – My Favourite Faded Fantasy
- AKMU – Korean indie pop duo who happens to be siblings, their music is refreshing.
- ONE OK Rock – Hearbreak and Mighty Long Fall
Movies – that got my fangirl heart into overdrive
- Rurouni Kenshin – Takeruuuuu Satoh , so pretty
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens – #RIPME
In summary, I started the year on a high note, glitzing my way with the help of music, arts and liking someone very much. Then rash decisions, reckless emotions got the better of me in the second and third quarter of the year, plunging me into a crisis, almost, almost making me think that maybe this year sucks again. I dunno how I pulled through, maybe travel, music, and Tumblr helped? But now I’m able to look back into the not so good things and can say that it was for the best. I’m happy to finish the year with positivity.
This year, I championed bravery and the power of beginning again. I think I lived well this year. I can only hope that somehow I have influenced others to live, to embrace pain and happiness, to take it as it comes.
Now, let me live and eat Korean fried chicken with a bottle of Smirnoff Mule.
Happy New Year everyone!!