(Edit: Nope, did not finish this in one sitting.)
1. What did you do in 2018 that you’d never done before?
- Ran a half-marathon
- Went to Venice
- Assembled various (four, to be precise) flat-pack furniture, such as a wardrobe
- Went to Belgium (Brussels and Bruges)
- Played tennis on a highway (a Belgian highway) packed with cars
- Tried to rescue an injured squirrel, got kicked out of a taxi when I tried to get the squirrel to the vet and it escaped from my bag, then watched as the squirrel leapt out of the car, ran around all hassled and confused, and eventually fell to its death. I cannot ever forget the sight of it convulsing on the sidewalk as it died. This was honestly one of the worst days of my life.
- I honestly can't think of anything else.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Last year, I '[resolved] to have a serviceable draft of my bloody PhD by the end of 2018'. I had this 'serviceable draft' by August but did nothing with it for months, until now--January 2019. I really suck at this shit.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
4. Did anyone close to you die?
5. What countries did you visit?
Italy (Venice), Hong Kong, France (Nice and Lille), Belgium (Brussels and Bruges) and...that's it.
6. What would you like to have in 2019 that you lacked in 2018?
Stability and direction in life; my PhD; and a job.
I'm quite happy to note that the thing that I wanted for 2018--'A proper relationship with a properly compatible person who can be properly emotionally available and committed'--I finally have. (For now!)
7. What dates from 2018 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Apparently September 14 because that was when E first kissed me. (Not that I remembered the date; he did, and told me).
December 9 - half-marathon nightmare. But a nightmare worth accomplishing.
And that day of the failed squirrel-rescuing attempt.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Finally getting the first-publication monkey off my back; finishing the draft of my thesis; and running the half-marathon in a decent time.
Also, finally starting to write again.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Not polishing the thesis sooner; not writing enough; not spending enough time on my PhD.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Apart from my yearly cold that seems to coincide with my running plans, no.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
My Asus Zenbook. It's amazing.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My parents, always and forever. E, too, for being a really sweet boyfriend. Mag and Rui, for being one of the few, but deeply important, reasons I would want to (in fact, want to) return to Singapore. John and Raffael too, for being my PhD friends, and simply being my friends.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Thomas. Oh god, why did I get myself enmeshed in that shitfest?
This must be said: NETFLIX FOR CANCELLING DAREDEVIL, THOSE FUCKERS.
Also: a friendship that I hoped to rekindle but which turned sour instead.
And...NEB. Enough said. Though I had a part to play in that as well.
14. Where did most of your money go?
PhD fees, rent, some small trips, food. FOOD. And now in London--the bloody Tube.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Daredevil Season 3. Does this count? I was also excited about moving to London.
16. What song will always remind you of 2018?
17. Compared to this time last year, are you: (a) happier or sadder? (b) thinner or fatter? (c) richer or poorer?
b. I think I weigh more but am fitter.
c. Poorer by logical necessity: still no income, still spending money; QED. <<< Same as last year.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
My PhD. Sigh. I also wish I'd read more and written more.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Engaged with Thomas and his crap. I wish I'd just seen him for who he was as in the person that he was with me instead of believing in the idea of him that I had in my head.
I also wish I hadn't tried to revive something from the past that should simply remain dead.
20. How did you spend Christmas?
My parents and I attempted to go to Malaysia for lunch. We crossed the Singapore checkpoint and was about to drive up to the Malaysian one when we spotted a hge queue of cars. My dad, the seasoned daily cross-country commuter, said that the jam would take at leas 1.5 hours to clear. As it was my condition that I didn't want to spend hours stuck in traffic, we noped the hell out of there.
I spent the rest of the day not at my uncle's and at home, trying to do some work but probably not succeeding; probably doing not very much. I also ate a lot.
21. Did you fall in love in 2018?
Eventually, yes, to a man who's more than worth it. I think I take comfort in the fact that I'm not head-over-heels in love with him, that we started off as friends, and that this is a relationship that makes sense--both mentally and emotionally. Mentally because he's the type of man that I've been wanting to have (even if he doesn't share all of my fundamental values); and emotionally because I feel safe with him and I know that I can trust him, and that he wouldn't hurt me. It's great.
22. What was your favorite TV programme?
DAREDEVIL SEASON 3. Daredevil is just amazing and Netflix still sucks for cancelling it.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
I mean, yeah, people get on my nerves, they disappoint, but hate? I don't even know why anyone would go to that extent, harbouring such deeply negative emotions towards others.
24. What was the best book you read?
Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson. Exquisitely beautiful prose that conveys the bone-deep loneliness of her characters.
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Really enjoyed Camila Cabello's album!
26. What did you want and get?
A publication. Yes!
27. What did you want and not get?
A finished PhD. And probably too many things to remember.
28. What was your favorite film of this year?
Hmm. I honestly can't think of anything.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
FUCKING HELL I JUST REALISED THAT I'M 33 THIS YEAR. I THOUGHT I WAS 32. OH MY GOD.
Anyway. I was 32, in Singapore. Went to a vegetarian buffet lunch with my mom. I forgot what I did in the evening. Had cake with my parents, knowing myself and my usual pattern of behaviour. And since I was in Singapore, the cake was a delicious chocolate cake from Lana.
30. What one thing made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Having a paper accepted for publication and (I know one thing but I can't just pick one) getting together with E.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2018?
32. What kept you sane?
It's actually hard to say. Apart from the typical answer--i.e. friends and family--I suppose an innate survival instinct that forced me to get through shit and shitty days because time kind of just goes on and the next day arrives and you wake up in the morning and get out of bed and get through another day. Am I right to call it an innate survival instinct? Maybe it's not even that; maybe it's just a going through of the motions. Regardless: that was probably it.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Er. I don't know.
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
Animal rights/protection and environmental protection.
35. Who did you miss?
36. Who was the best new person you met?
Elijah is pretty awesome!
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2018.
The 'ex' in 'ex-boyfriend' is placed before 'boyfriend' for a very, very good reason. And: the best things come when you're not particularly looking for them.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
I can never answer this question.