Last year I expressed three goals for 2018: to do another road trip in America, eat more vegan waffles, and learn to drive. I didn’t learn to drive, but two out of three ain’t bad.
San Francisco, Portland, Seattle
For my birthday my partner and I went on another road trip. We started the journey in San Francisco, and drove to Portland and Seattle, taking detours to look at cool things.
Cool things we looked at included:
- Glass Beach in Fort Bragg, which sounds better on Wikipedia than looks IRL
- Devastated Area in Lassen Volcanic Park, which was a patch of fairly new shrubbery in place of the forest that was destroyed after Lassen Peak erupted a hundred years ago. At the same park I saw my first geyser and a boiling mudpot
- Crater Lake, which used to be an enormous volcano, but collapsed on itself after an eruption, forming the most pristine, sapphire coloured lake
- Mount St Helens volcano, where I touched a rock younger than I am
Other cool things we did were shopping in an Amazon Go store in Seattle on my birthday, eating a cherry pie at the R&R diner from Twin Peaks, and drinking margaritas in three different states.
Year of DIY
After boring months of searching and administrative faff I bought a flat. It was the nicest present I ever got myself, and I was finally able to unleash my inner decorator. The list of improvements I want to make should keep me occupied for a good few years.
I don’t have a good sense of how many knitting and sewing projects I finished in 2018. Partly because I was busy doing up the flat, but partly because I’m trying to be less focused on the finished objects and enjoy the process.
There is a stack of nearly finished books on my coffee table, which tells me that 2018 was a year of good intentions. A plea to non-fiction authors: make your argument in a hundred pages or less. Ideally, much less.
I joined a dance class, which both a source of great joy and great embarrassment. I find it interesting how much I enjoy it despite being absolutely bad at it.
I also decided to work on my speech and my voice and started seeing a voice coach. She is helping me learn to consciously control how I make sounds. It’s not yet having an effect on my day-to-day speech, but maybe it will?
I gained more responsibilities at IF as the year went on. I am grateful that I get to learn from very smart people, and work on some very challenging problems every day, defining a field in the process.
Next year I want to:
- see more places in the US
- make more friends
- learn to make more cocktails