In many ways, 2012 was kind of a crappy year. Officially splitting up with Robert, though it wasn't a big surprise, was painful. We are, at least, continuing to be friends. Then there were a few health issues throughout the year. While nothing was life-threatening or especially serious per se, these were reminders of getting older. The most annoying was a foot problem that persisted for a few months and resulted in being sentenced to a fracture boot for about a month. (The podiatrist diagnosed this as metatarsalgia, which translates to "pain in the ball of the foot." The podiatrist was a master of the obvious.)
On the plus side, I lost 27 pounds, partly due to heartbreak reducing my appetite. Work is fine, though I hate the noisiness of cubicle life and I hate hate hate my commute. And, the biggest positive is that I've had some renewed creative energy in the past couple of months, including working on new stories and new craftsmanship.
Books: I read 113 books over the year. There was, again, a lot of rereading and a large number of mysteries. I finished rereading Rex Stout, whose Nero Wolfe novels remain a pleasure. Other notable rereading included Robertson Davies (The Cornish Trilogy and The Deptford Trilogy) and Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series. Some other books I particularly liked were Laura Lippman's Every Secret Thing, John Buchan's The Thirty-None Steps, Tess Gerritsen's The Keepsake and (on a very different note) Howard Megdal's The Baseball Talmud, which ranks Jewish baseball players. The most disappointing reads of the year were Miss Seeton Undercover by Hamilton Crane and a few of the Toby Peters mysteries by Stuart Kaminsky. My two favorite books of the year were We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson (a re-read) and Abstract City by Christoph Niemann, whose visual blog of that same title has long been one of my favorites.
I got rid of 134 books and have another 70 or so ready to go out. Finding time for a used bookstore run is a bit challenging.
Volksmarch: The foot injury obviously slowed that down and I ended up doing only six events during 2012. I did, at least, finish the Hooray for Hollywood program and my 175 events book. I added 2 state capitals (leaving me at 30/51) and 2 more states (bringing me to 34/50). In terms of other special programs, my standings are America's Baseball Walks (3/18). America's Murals (2/20), Strolling Somewhere Over the Rainbow (2/20), America's Family Bakeries (3/20), and Struttin' Down Main Street (3/20). There are a couple of new ones I am contemplating doing, but haven't quite decided yet.
Travel: Travel is always a big part of my life. The new countries I went to during 2012 were Haiti, Vanuatu, Finland, and the Dominican Republic. I also went to the UK (a long weekend in London), Australia, and Israel. There was also plenty of domestic travel, including trips to Portland (Oregon), Philadelphia, Las Vegas, New York, Miami and Cincinnati, as well as frequent flyer events in Chicago and Los Angeles and Star Mega Do 4 which had me on a 787.
Culture: Storytelling continued. As part of continuing on the boards of Voices in the Glen and the Virginia Storytelling Alliance (VASA), I produced both the VASA Saturday series event at Lorton and the Voices pre-Halloween concert. The biggest storytelling news was performing a couple of times with Better Said Than Done. That was in addition to a few other performances and numerous swaps. I also went to the National Storytelling Conference, which is why I went to Cincinnati.
Theatre also continued, with some of the highlights including Two Gentlemen of Verona (the musical version) at Shakespeare Theatre Company, Memphis at The Kennedy Center, Xanadu and Dreamgirls at Signature Theatre, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at Elden Street Theatre, The History of Invulnerability at Theatre J, Mike Daisey's The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs and Old Jews Telling Jokes in New York.
My favorite musical events of the year were Pierre Bensusan (of course!) and Roberto Rodriguez and the Cuban Jewish All Stars.
I saw 1 movie in a theatre and 26 on airplanes. My favorites were Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Love Aaj Kal, and Crazy Stupid Love.
Other Stuff: I was solidly in the middle of the pack at both the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament and Lollapuzzoola 5, and placed 11 out of 50 at the Arlington Puzzle Fest. Obviously I can enjoy things without being brilliant at them.
The scarf p_j_cleary commissioned from me was a success. And I've made several pieces for the Arlington Yarn Bombing project.
I also enjoyed doing the Month of Letters project and plan to do it again this year.
Goals: I accomplished one life list item, by going to a baseball game in the Dominican Republic. I also made some progress on a few more, with hopes of finishing them in the next year.
I didn't do particularly well on the goals I set last year. I did finish reading the Apocrypha and I did organize the postcard collection (though I keep finding more postcards I need to file away.) I was doing fine on dance and walking for the first half of the year, but then I injured my foot in mid-August and really couldn't do much of either. So I can cut myself some slack on those.
But I accomplished little on travelogues or on knitting and, in fact, made negative progress on the socks having had to frog much of what I did since the sock I was well into was yeti-sized, not Miriam-sized. And I never even got started on the map drawer.
Adjusting credit for injury, I can only fairly give myself a 30% for the year. But, as I said, it was a rough year.
Which brings me to goals for 2013:
- Get caught up on travelogues. Yes, really.
- Get my finances organized again. I'm not in the least pressed for money, particularly as I am naturally frugal, but I have been bad about filing and keeping track of things and that is getting more significant in the context of retirement planning.
- Use up odds and ends of my yarn stash for the two public art projects I am working on. Essentially, I want all of the scraps of leftover yarn to be de-stashed.
- Do the 50K version of the One Day Hike on the C&O canal towpath.
- Read the New Testament.
- Watch at least another 10 Oscar winning movies.
- Go to at least 3 minor league baseball games.
- Finish the Volksmarch baseball program.