Looking Back / Looking Forward (1)

2012: The Year That Was

janus_1Here we are.  Another year is almost at an end.  Auld lang syne and all that.

For many reasons, 2012 was quite a good year for me although I didn’t seem to do much.  Perhaps less really is more.

Both my writing and my reading took a significant dip.  The lack of posts on this blog is one visible result of the former.  The latter is surprising as 2012 was the year I got a Kindle and so have easy, portable access to even more books.  Well, perhaps more is less after all.

But if you take into consideration how active I became on Facebook, you could say my writing and reading simply redirected.  At the end of the day, I’d rather read more pages in (e)books than posts on Facebook.

While I’m on the topic, let me provide a couple of statistics.  With less than a week to go this year, I’ve read a total of 16,097 book-pages while completing 49 books.  That sounds like a lot until you look at my stats for 2011: 21,601 pages and 101 books finished.  And I read 119 books the year before that,

Now that I have a Kindle, I seem to be reading longer books in a wider range of genres.  I also tend to read a few pages in one before switching to another and then another without making significant progress in any of them.  The riveting books that hold my interest for long periods of time became a bit of a rarity in the past few months.

I continued my career in education throughout the past year, teaching daytime lessons in a Thai government school run by the local municipality and spending many an evening and weekend with much smaller classes in a shopping mall language school.  There are constant highs and lows involved in each of these jobs; the students and methods used (not to mention resources) are so different between each that I never really know what to expect from day to day.  Keeps life interesting.

Perhaps the most significant personal “event” in my 2012 was the sudden re-appearance of my ex-wife.  She’d been MIA since mid-2004 and was only in Phuket long enough for us to officially end the long-finished marriage at the Phuket District Office.  As there were no financial disputes or supportable children involved, the entire process cost 50 baht (approximately $1.60 in American money) and a couple of signatures.  We had to surrender our marriage certificates as well.  In exchange, we were given a divorce certificate which is much less attractive in design.

Let’s see…  In 2012, I also received a new passport as the old one was set to expire in January 2013.  I walked a lot, took a lot of photos, ate more Thai food (having found a favorite Isaan-style restaurant near my home), and gained much too much weight towards the end of the year.

There were losses this year as well.  Most significant was the death of Neil Armstrong the week following a series of lessons I’d taught about our solar system.  I’d shown the kids my autographed photo of Mr. Armstrong and many told me they were “sorry” following his death,  (I’m always surprised when they remember anything from any lesson upon departing the classroom.)

More than anything, I’d say that I am content at the end of 2012.  I am happy with my life at this point in time.  I may be alone but I certainly am not lonely.  I’m living the dream on a tropical island.  There are problems but nothing that can’t be pushed aside and conquered.

In my next post, my first of 2013, I will look forward to the New Year.  While I don’t usually like to declare the traditional resolution (which are quickly broken and forgotten), I do have some definite ideas on how to improve upon the past year and make my life even more enjoyable.

Stay tuned…

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