To the sounds of distant fireworks, we got out of our Uber just after midnight, wearily rolling our suitcases through the entrance of our building.
Tired from our six-hour flight from Geneva – yet possibly still a little bit buzzed (hello, in-flight sparkling) – we rode the lift to our 34th floor apartment, hoping to catch a glimpse of the last of the fireworks show from our balcony as the new year rolled in.
Alas, no luck in catching a glimpse of the fireworks – we settled on the couch and soon fell asleep.
2023 has begun – albeit with some apprehension about deadlines, schedules, and the responsibilities of daily life.
And while it’s taken the last couple of days to readjust to regular routines, I’m taking the opportunity to settle into the new year slowly – what’s the rush, right? Although, blink and we’ll soon be in December again – and to reflect on some of the things that shaped my 2022.
Oh, my word!
If you had to pick a word – just one word – to describe your 2022, what would that word be?
2022 was a year of big change for me.
It was the start of ‘I do’ and the beginning of married life.
J and I celebrated our nuptials again, this time in my hometown, in front of our Melbourne friends and family.
It was out with the old (bless you Facebook Marketplace) and in with the … well, space in the suitcase as I packed up my belongings – putting items I just couldn’t part with into storage – as I prepared to move overseas.
It was my first experience of Business Class – wrapped up in the luxury of a sparkling-filled world I can’t quite explain only to say that once you’ve flown business it’s hard to go back.
It was adjusting to expat life – that initial battle with jetlag, finding my feet, meeting new people, and experiencing new sights. Adjusting. Finding balance. Yoga.
It was meeting my in-laws in person for the first time.
While I’d met J’s family via FaceTime before the wedding and all, the ongoing Covid saga meant that I didn’t actually get to meet them in person until after the wedding. And yes, due to restrictions unfortunately they weren’t able to attend the wedding and instead watched the ceremony on Zoom.
Imagine meeting your in-laws for the first time after your wedding. Stressful much! Thankfully – and really, I had no doubts – J’s family is absolutely splendid. I love them so much. And despite the language barrier (God bless Google Translate), the bond we’ve been able to establish has been, well, magnifique.
It was a year of reading – so many books I couldn’t put down.
A few standouts include:
- On All Fronts by Clarissa Ward.
Loved this book! I knew I would from the moment I picked it up in a Brisbane bookshop. It also benefited my uni assignments, especially the Global Journalism unit I took in 2022.
- Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.
I read this one in the summer, in France, while sitting in J’s parents’ jacuzzi, sipping champagne with Le Tour de France in the background. It was bliss. Loved the book – couldn’t put it down. Did not expect the ending. And, in fact, I loved it so much that I even bought a copy in French for J’s dad to read.
- Normal People and then Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney.
Both brilliant! Loved them. Couldn’t put them down. Love the way Sally writes.
- The Secret Life of Writers by Guillaume Musso.
A suspense thriller that I finished in a day or two. Really well written.
- The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair by Joel Dicker.
My favourite book of 2022! And possibly my favourite ‘whodunit’ since ‘Gone Girl’ by Gillian Flynn. We bought this book on our most recent trip to France and I was hooked from the first paragraph. It completely drew me in – I couldn’t put it down. And despite my many theories along the way, I did not see the ending coming. So many twists and turns. And incredibly well written. Five stars from me!
It was the year of entertainment.
So much popcorn was eaten!
From that Oscar’s slap to the Johnny Depp v Amber Heard court case that played out on YouTube and all over social media – so much dra-mah!
And from real life to the screen, there were also some great movies and shows to binge in 2022.
Standouts for me include ‘Inventing Anna’ and ‘The Tinder Swindler’ (Netflix); ‘Physical’ (Apple+ TV); ‘Anatomy of A Scandal’ (Netflix); ‘Emily in Paris’ (Netflix); ‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ (movie); and ‘She Said’ (movie).
And then, of course, there was the ‘Harry & Meghan’ documentary (Netflix), Meghan’s podcast … and the many, many Twitter posts, YouTube videos, and articles written about them in 2022 …
2022 certainly entertained!
Reflecting on 2022 there have been so many moments to remember – too many to list here.
There have been highs, lows, adjustments, and everything in between.
And to sum it up in one word – it was all about resilience.
A year of not simply surviving but thriving.
I can’t wait to see what 2023 has in store!