Considering everything, no-one will miss you…
Especially these last days of the year really made people long for those days when you could just turn
the tv and hide away from all the bad news at least for a few days. While we all wish the next year to be the best ever, the undeniable truth is that we are facing it amid seemingly unstoppable wars, the rise of unacceptable political views and at the treshold of four years of who knows what.
Still, I want this one to be a happy post. Aside from a sad personal loss and all mentioned above, there were some pretty great things happening to me this year. Before the annual round-up of world affairs tomorrow, let me recount some of my personal favorites from 2016 now.
Turn of events at work
I started 2016 with the resolution that a really unbearable situtation at work will have to stop very soon or I will leave my job. I took action early in January and worked towards a solution for myself as I felt unable to solve it otherwise. The situation brought a pretty hard decision for me that I finally made, that I really was so miserable in that situation that I was ready to leave the organization. Long story short, they did not let me, things did change a bit, and they are going better ever since for the whole organization, finally with a more capable personnel.
The Queen at 90
London is my most favorite place to visit ever. I am a huge fan of British culture, British history and British lifestyle. I visited London first in 2011 and I can go back again and again and never get tired of it. I have always watched the annual Trooping the Colour on tv, and always thought I should be there once. And this year I was there among the well wishers to wave to the Queen as she and other royals drove by for the celebration of her 90th birthday. It was an unforgettable event, if you are just half as interested in British culture as I am, you should see it for yourself at least once.
Seeing Mariah Carey live
Seeing her not once, but twice this year, actually! Mariah is my all time favorite singer and idol. So much so, that if my twelve-year-old self knew she would go to a Mariah concert twice in a month someday, she would have seriously freaked out. During her Sweet Sweet Fantasy Tour in Europe I have got to see Mariah in Manchester, and the second time in Vienna, where I could also meet up with many of my Hungarian lamb-pals. The show and her voice was unforgettable both times, as always, and I can’t wait to see her again!
The Hague International Open Day
I kept on planning to do a separate post about this ever since but never really got around to it, perhaps I will before next year’s event. The Hague is the city of international justice, the home of several world courts and other international organizations. On the last weekend of September they hold an open day, where they welcome visitors to inform them about their work and show them around their workplaces. I got to visit the International Court of Justice and the Permanent Court of Arbitration, both located in the Peace Palace, and also the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. The Hague quickly became one of my favorite places to visit too, as I have spent a really pleasant weekend there. If you are interested in international organizations just a bit, I hope to see you on next year’s open day in The Hague, because I definitely will return!
Raising the bar
Decisions, decisions… A short while ago I passed the line of three years of law practice that makes you suitable to sit for the bar exam in Hungary. I can’t even try to compare it to the American system (for one thing, it is not one exam, but three with nine sub-topics in Hungary), despite the differences, I am pretty sure they are equally hard. It was really a hard decision for me to make, as I have never intended to be an attorney in Hungary, but then I came to the decision that whatever is next in my life, this next year of studying hard and having the end results in my resume will be good for my career at last (I am trying to recall this sentiment while studying and having no time for fun ever since – just kidding, no, but really…).
Some random favorites from 2016
Books: If you check my Goodreads profile you will find that I shamefully fell behind with my reading goals for 2016. Considering everything I have planned for 2017 I will try and set a more reasonable goal. As a lawyer I have to read an awful lot on a daily basis, reading literature is still very important, I do want to find the time for it no matter what, even if it is just a few pages per day. Out of all the books I’ve read this year I choose to recommend All the light we cannot see, that I was planning to read ever since it became a hit. It was all that they praised it to be and more. Not an easy reading, but definitely worth it.
TV shows: Despite the fact that these are the kind of entertainment that I use to unwind and relax, my favorites are pretty serious in topic. Madam Secretary is still one of my favorite shows, Tea Leoni is just great, Morgan Freeman produces, occasionally directs it, and the writing is just terrific! The show does a pretty fair prediction of world affairs sometimes, but let’s just hope they don’t hit the ball on all counts (an Iran-Israel war for example is the very last thing the world needs right now…). Another show that quickly became one of my favorite is Designated Survivor. If you are into conspiracy thrillers, this one’s for you. If you missed it so far, now you’ve got time to catch up until spring. I find the story a bit slow moving sometimes, but that cliffhanger of the winter finale was like whoa!
Podcasts: 2016 was the year I’ve got introduced to podcasts (or the other way around, whatever). First, so many people recommended Serial, that I had to check it out, and when I did, I quickly consumed all of the two seasons available. I so wish there will be more! Then there was the launch of The West Wing Weekly. I am a huge Aaron Sorkin fan, The West Wing is my favorite show EVER, and when this podcast launched I started watching it again with Hrishi and Josh, and I am telling you, it is fantastic! I recommend it whether the show is new to you or you’ve watched it back when it was a hit. You wouldn’t believe how much relevance those old episodes carry for today’s politics as well.
Sports: As a seasonal jogger, I put on my running shoes from like March to October, when the weather is fairly warm in Hungary. Otherwise I am seeking other activities. This year while doing yoga all year around (you can still join Adriene’s yoga revolution to start off 2017 in a healthy way!), I became pretty good at running, so I will definitely try to go out more the next season. I am also looking for something else to fit in my busy schedule, like spinning maybe (I wish somebody would bring in Soul Cycle to Hungary already, I would definitely be in!)
Planners: As I am one of those stationary freaks who can even find pleasure in sharpening a pencil, I have always had one of those neat paper calendars. The problem is, I am also one of those people who decides not to write each and every seemingly unimportant thing in their neat paper calendars, and so a lot of things go unscheduled, cross-scheduled, even forgotten. Since 2017 promises to be one of the busiest years for me ever (work, studies, blog, everything else) I do have to find an effective calendar system that works for me. I was thinking about the Erin Condren Life Planner for a long time, but finally I decided to start with a simpler one from Sweet Plans (I did order some accessories from Erin Condren, though, I could not resist). I am trying to learn from people who are great and effective at using planners, so if you have any tips and suggestions, please send it my way!
Wow, this ended up being longer than I expected, but I hope it doesn’t just help me end 2016 on a positive note, but all of you who read it as well. Thank you for following and here’s to a happier 2017 for us all!