Ah, 2016. What a bizarre year it has been. Pokémon Go took over the world and we lost countless big name celebrities. As I sit here and think about this year, I realise that it just wasn’t that great to me. Like it wasn’t bad, it just was not great. It is what I think of as a ‘stepping stone’ year; a year that will get me to somewhere better. I hope.
As I discussed in my Yes Man post, I wasn’t happy with how I conducted my year. As some of you may know, I tore my ACL (one of the main ligaments in the knee) in late November and required a knee reconstruction. This really ruined a lot of my plans but it definitely gave me an opportunity to change my mind set for 2017.Not to mention that the surgery cost me a couple of round the world flights (goodbye spending money!). Backpackers will probably faint if I told them how much it cost me.
I had my reconstruction just over two weeks ago and I am in a much more positive mind space. The pain is nothing – don’t get me wrong, it is there but nowhere near as painful as what I anticipated. What is getting to me is the limitations that I am facing. I have pretty much been house bound for the past month (yes, it is really getting to me). My car is a manual (stick) so I won’t be able to drive it until February so I am leaning on my friends and family to give me a lift or to swap cars (Canberra isn’t really a great place for public transport plus with a busted knee it really isn’t great). They have been so supportive and I really do appreciate everything they have done for me. When I am out, I need to have crutches with me if there are a lot of people (only for the first 6 weeks). I walk without them but I use them more as a barrier so people don’t accidently knock me while the ligaments reconnect. Plus, it is really hot here. Walking takes a lot of concentration at the moment and in the heat I am just pouring with sweat (great mental image right?!).
While I have been couch bound, I have done a lot of blog writing and provided input to some other amazing bloggers so there is a silver lining. Not to mention that I have started to plan all of my trips for 2017. I am now racing the clock to make sure my knee is up to speed to travel. I am doing all of my one legged squats and hamstring curls exactly on time because I will not miss my trip booked to Hawaii in March. But before I launch in to 2017, let’s have a look at 2016.
In April, I was given the opportunity by the Indonesian Tourism Board to travel to Manado and Ambon. This was such an amazing opportunity and I could not thank the Board enough. I have never been to Indonesia before this and I have no idea why! This is Australia’s closest neighbour and I have neglected it but not anymore. I am hoping to get to Komodo Island soon. I want to see the magnificent Komodo Dragons in their natural environments. This was a whirlwind trip and I don’t think I have seen even half of what these areas have to offer. It is amazing at how places hide such hidden beauties.
I explored different parts of Australia. I made my yearly trip down to Tomakin with my Mum and sister with my dog, Jack.
I explored Melbourne with a good friend.
I went to Sydney with the family to watch the University of California Golden Bears v the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (American Football was a first for me and I really enjoyed it).
I went to Sydney for a friends hens weekend (and boy did we party hard).
I explored Goulburn (a historic neighbouring town to Canberra) to understand about the history of our region.
I camped out at Wee Jasper to raise money for cancer research.
I spent a weekend at the beach just relaxing.
And I learnt to explore my own neighbourhood. When I look at it like this, it’s not that bad of a year.
Next year I have a couple of international trips booked in, first up is Hawaii in March. I will leave the other trips in suspense but it won’t take long until you find out my travel plans for 2017. I am also hoping to get to Kerala, India. All you have to do is vote for me (yes, a shameless plug) here. I am already setting up numerous interstate trips and will hope to visit Tasmania for the first time (I have been told that I will love it). I am also looking at exploring more places around Canberra and will love to show the rest of the world. Canberra is known as being a pretty boring place but I am keen to prove the world wrong.
2017 will be a busy year. I work full time, study part time and blog for fun (it keeps me sane) and this will continue into the new year. My life is generally quite busy but I hope to bring you more hidden gems in 2017. But I couldn’t be more thankful for all of the support that I have received from all of you. Through an Aussie’s Eyes would not exist if it wasn’t for all of you.