2023 - a year in review
So much has happened - this is some of it.
2022 was a year of moving. We started the year in Brussels but preparing to move back to the UK. Because we knew neither of us would have to work in the office, we decided, why not, let's live somewhere picturesque. Mid-January, I flew to Manchester to find us a house to rent in the Lake District for the next nine months, cause you know, ideas!
Optimistically, I thought it could all be done in a week - it took me four weeks instead! Luckily I'm a pragmatic packer.
I spent the extra weeks working from an Airbnb in Manchester, buying us a used car (Mindy!) and some basic furniture (the house we were renting came unfurnished, and our stuff was 🐌 somewhere between Brussels and the UK). Then off to Milton Keynes with a train, sleep, rent a car with Neil, drive to Brussels, the band re-united, wife, dog, cat, cat, all there, sleep and head back to the Lake District, boom!
Then the lovely lake district until October with lots of walks and swimming in lakes and us living from boxes and makeshift furniture - knowing we'll move soon, we wanted to keep most of our stuff packed and buy only a little furniture. #glamping
Valerie did her language immersion in September in Greece, so we spent almost five weeks apart. Did not particularly enjoy that, no.
But, on the plus side, Valerie and I have been together for more than 11 years now and are still very much in love!
Then another road trip to Athens, this time to it took us six days - oh, but it was gorgeous - including a 23-hour ferry from Italy (yes, the pets were there with us in the tiny cabin) and then finally Athens, where we're now and will be for the next four or five years. (And no, we're still not fully unpacked...)
I switched jobs! VIBBIO, was my first full-time job as a software developer, but after three years, I wanted to try something else. The job-hunting process was (surprisingly!) smooth (it took me around three weeks from start to finish), and I've just passed my six-month mark at Lottie.
Friends and family permalink
Yet another year of Zoom: the weekly family hangouts, chatting with my sister, the movie club, the study groups, and playing board games online.
Friends came to visit us in Lake District, too; lots of walks and exploring, kayaking, and trying not to be offended by all the rain and wind.
Following the Got7 concert in the O2, we both got covid. I got hit quite hard, was really poorly for two days, and was super weak for another 2-3 weeks. Stairs remained a challenge for quite some time.
Our precious Gytha 🐕 got an eye - we thought tumor, for sure, and imagined the worst scenarios, it turns out (for now!) it's benign, and we just have to keep an eye on it. 🥁
I've mostly stopped eating dairy products: no eggs or milk. The only issue since moving to Greece is feta cheese, which is everywhere. But in any case, when at home, we eat vegan + some fish.
I've been good with exercise: lots of running, some bodyweight training (I will learn how to do those handstands, damnit!), and recently some weight lifting.
I use Anki every day, first thing in the morning, for 45-60 min. I use it for Greek, Chinese, Spanish, programming, keyboard shortcuts, general knowledge, and anything I want to remember.
I don't know when I started, but 2022 was the year I started using Obsidian for all my note-taking and note reviewing. I love it. I keep experimenting with how I use it (daily notes or not, data views, tagging, links, styling, themes), but the core features - markdown files and easy file creation and linking - remain unbeatable. Unfortunately, this is also the main reason why I hardly write any blog posts these days.
I've been learning Greek for over a year now and consider myself at an intermediate level. Most of it has been self-study, plus I've had two hours of 1:1 classes since June.
For most of the year, I've also had weekly 1:1 Mandarin Chinese classes just to maintain my level. I've stopped when things have gotten too busy with the move to Greece and haven't restarted yet. I don't think I have the brain power at the moment.
Because of Lottie, I've had to pick up NextJS and Tailwind. I've also spent a lot of time improving my TypeScript skills.
Miscellaneous highlights permalink
- Ana and Neil visiting - wherever we are
- Concerts: Another Fine Fest (the fantastic Ulverston festival), Got7, Jacob Colier
- Escape rooms!
- Boardgame cafes and playing lots of different boardgames!
- Driving around the Lake District
- Generally, spending a lot of time outdoors: running, hiking, kayaking, trying windsurfing for the first time, and swimming in the sea in December.
- Going back to Slovenia and seeing my family healthy and the niblings growing up.
- Hiking (2000m peak in the Alps) with my mom and aunties in Slovenia!
- Golden State Warriors won the NBA championship!
- Moving to Greece - have I mentioned that the weather and the food here are incredible?!
Goals for 2023 permalink
- Learning (programming): Docker, AWS, Racket, maybe learn Vim? 🤷♀️ Get really good at TypeScript. - Learning (languages): Get Greek to an advanced level - Mentoring and organizing: get back to mentoring and organizing study groups once I've recovered from the move.
- Generally try a lot of new things: new friends, experiences, places, food, drinks, dancing, singing, sports.