Every Cloud: 2020 Highlights (Yes, Seriously.)

Let’s face it, there’s been a lot more to complain about than there has been to celebrate in 2020. It really was one hell of a year, and I don’t mean that in the good way. For me, among other things, it’s included spending six months jobless, and three of those without seeing another human face to face. Unless you count at the supermarket, which I don’t. You’ll understand why if you’ve ever tried to make conversation with a Carrefour cashier.

That said, I’m an insufferable incurable optimist, and whilst I like to moan as much as (and possibly slightly more than) the next person, I also believe in finding the silver lining in almost every situation. So although we’ll all be only too happy to see the back of 2020, I thought I’d end it on a positive note by rounding up a handful of my personal highlights from the year. Admittedly, some bottom-of-the-barrel scraping may have occurred in the process…

Alors, in no particular order:

  1. Perfected my banana bread recipe.
  2. Watched Dirty Dancing and Jurassic Park for the first time. (I know, I know.)
  3. Listened to 90,000 minutes of music. (According to Spotify.)
  4. Made dating apps 1000% more tolerable by devising an INGENIOUS drinking game to accompany them. Patent pending.
  5. Finally bought myself the full set of Harry Potter films. (Anyone who knows me personally will know how remarkable it is that I only just did this. Obviously I’ve owned them all in some form or another in my life. But these ones MATCH. And, more importantly, aren’t currently sitting in a storage unit back in England, jumbled in with my ex-boyfriend’s misc. possessions that didn’t make the move to France… three years ago.)
  6. Discovered the World’s Greatest Cinnamon Bun.
  7. Achieved official “Parisienne” status by getting to first-name-terms friendliness with the team at “my” local café/bar. (Dubbed my “HQ” by my friends. Will probably get its own blog post, eventually.)
  8. The introduction of the ORANGE Twirl* in the UK (and multiple shipments of them to Paris from my mother. Thanks, Mum.)
  9. Received multiple compliments from my dentist on the excellent condition in which I keep my teeth. Multiple.
  10. Adieu, Trump.

And to wrap up, a few more serious ones (not that ditching Trump isn’t a MAJOR highlight of the year):
• Learned to play guitar after saying I would for, oh I don’t know, about ten years or so?
• Wrote a (full) song for the first time
• Rekindled some relationships**, and strengthened others
• Discovered Rome
• Actually learned quite a lot of Italian words and phrases. And some Japanese ones.
• Took up bouldering (climbing with no ropes), yoga (also with no ropes), and dance (idem).
• Finally learned all the (Italian) words to Time To Say Goodbye
• And last but certainly not least, got over three hundred pages into a writing project that I am VERY excited about indeed…. Watch this space.

* A (delicious) flaky chocolate bar by Cadbury, for my non-British readers.

** I don’t mean the romantic variety.

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