2009 was a year of travels, triumphs, trials, and travails. This year I've been on 7 different airplanes, driven thousands of miles, visited 35 states and 2 continents, stopping in a total of 6 different countries, while trying my hand at ordering food and drink, and occasionally asking for directions, in 5 different languages. It's been the most physically and emotionally exhausting year of my life. It was a year of intense fun and equally intense confusions.
In North Carolina I was able to have dinner and get drunk with one of my heroes. In Portland I had possibly the best week of my life. I made many new friends and was able to live on the road with some of them for months at a time. I reconnected with friends I haven't seen in years, and it felt like not even a day had passed. I went to almost 80 shows this year, far surpassing any amount I've been to in the past and will ever go to again in the future. I got to see my favorite band twice.
I've grown closer to people I never thought I could be any closer to. I've also seen friendships wane with people I never thought it was possible to lose. I've seen many beginnings, yet too many definite conclusions. I've sat and drank with friends. I've sat and laughed with friends. I've sat and cried with friends.
I've learned many things this year. Most notably I've learned how to let go, I've learned how to move on. I've learned how to accept the things that come to me, both the good and the bad. I've learned again how to appreciate "home," not only as a place, but as a concept. I may have learned these things too late. Now I need to learn how to forget, and also how to forgive myself. I also have to learn Algebra and Geometry before January 9th.
In 2009 I had a job that I allowed to define who I was. Now that job is gone and I need to find a way to define myself, based on who I am and not what I do. It's also time to start taking seriously whatever it is that will come next.
2009 began with me sick in bed, after eating my third bad cheeseburger of the year. 2010 began with me falling asleep in San Francisco, in my best friend's neighbor's doorway while one of the greatest men I've ever known emptied his stomach at the end of the sidewalk 10 feet away from me and his freshly-named fiance ran backwards laps around us. I remember counting down to New Years with about 200 other people, none of whom realizing at the time that we were counting down 2 minutes too early. I remember drinking whiskey and champagne in the streets. I remember laughter, I remember the most laughter. I remember nothing but smiles and hugs and kisses and the odd, yet welcome, warmth of that winter night in San Francisco.
2010, I've got a good feeling about you.