Well quite a predictable post really I guess, but like most, I find myself on the last day of 2011, reflecting on what has been and what is to come. Although the marking of time as we know it, truly is a human construct, we cannot help as a species reflect at this time of year. Time itself does march on regardless of our wishes and intentions and our aging from birth to the grave is the yardstick we measure it by. If I look at myself now at the end of 2011 I see someone who is older both physically and mentally, but also more experienced and wiser. I see someone with quite a bit of facial hair, which is showing a fair bit of grey these days. I see someone who has a lot to be thankful for, a lot to hope for and a lot to look forward to in 2012.
2011 saw all of us at Auckland Council in our first year in our new roles and organisation. It has been a ride along the way, with many ups and downs as we found our feet in the new world in which we worked. Yet, I do think we have come a long way in 2011 and feel a sense of optimism for 2012 on the work front. I am looking forward to a year which has less major change in it, which will be nice, considering the past two years have pretty much been built on change.
Being asked to join the INELI group as part of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Global Library's Initiative was a huge honour and I have felt so blessed and amazed to meet the fantastic individuals involved from around the world. To be given the opportunity to work with these people, get to know them, and to work towards opportunities for libraries globally is a pretty amazing thing. Where around the world we will meet in 2012 I do not know, but I cannot wait to meet up again with the people involved.
In 2011, I was lucky enough to be in the U.S.A twice, Australia once, and to travel to several places around the country. It was a year of much travel in ways and indeed, on my second visit to San Francisco in as many months and my third in total, I suddenly felt quite familiar with the place. It felt like a comfortable destination for me, which was actually pretty cool. On my third trip to Brisbane ever and second as an adult, I was impressed by the use of the South Bank river area. Although Brisbane is not my destination of choice in Australia, I was quite happy spending time there and loved the way the city as turned the South Bank into a destination for all. The artificial beach is pretty amazing.
When 2011 began, I had no idea we would be selling our house and buying another. Or that we would be spending some time living with my sister-in-law in between these two events, as we orchestrated a transfer of property and helped her find another place. It was rather neat to get some time living with Liam, who truly is a special little man and to get to see him grow from a 1 1/2 year old, into a 2 year old. I am lucky to have been given the opportunity I have.
The Christchurch Earthquake in Feb has left a mark on many of us and in different ways. I feel very lucky not to have lived through any of the quakes, but still feel a sense of loss around the historic city that I grew up around. It really has not totally sunk in yet and I think will not until I travel around some of the suburbs, and I am not sure I want to go back there any time soon and see that stuff.
Finally, I am so pleased with the outcome of my 52 laughs project. It really was a fantastic thing to do and I am so pleased I did it. With the book now available, I am turning my thoughts to what next and with less than 24 hours till 2012, I still have not worked that out yet.
Good luck with your journey into 2012 and I hope you have a great year.