…before I stop talking about the new year and get back to a regular blogging schedule.
Last year on New Year’s Eve, my friends and I went through a Buzzfeed list of questions to ask yourself as 2015 became 2016. I thought it’d be interesting to answer a few and then do the same at the end of 2016 and see what, if anything, has changed. Last year’s answers are here. And this year’s are below.
What did you do in 2016 that you were proud of?
One of my companies broke through the VAT barrier. I don’t know if I ever really believed I’d have a company that could be defined as relatively successful in terms of turnover, but here we are.
Who did you meet this year that inspired you?
Roger Penrose. Which is cheating a bit, because he’s been inspiring me from afar since I was about 18, but in 2016 I went to a talk he did about physics and then afterwards I met him and he signed his book for me.
What did you read that you think bettered you?
How To Think Like Leonardo da Vinci by Michael Gelb, because it helped me understand what it means to be a Renaissance human.
What song defined this year for you?
Dollar Days by Bowie. Or possibly Panis Angelicus.
What were some fears that you had at the beginning of the year that you overcame?
I’m not sure I did, really. The main thing I wanted to overcome was my fear of spiders, but that didn’t work out. I think I have the same fears at the end of the year as I had at the beginning. Having said that, I did make myself face one of my biggest fears when I went to the dentist for the first time in eleven years. It was terrifying and I certainly wouldn’t say I ‘overcame’ the fear, but I felt the fear and did it anyway, which perhaps counts for something.
What is your favourite photo that you took this year?
This one, when Lumiere London was lighting up the city and there was a huge net thing hanging above the centre of town.
A fortuitous appearance by a London bus made it work well, I think.
In which place did you feel true joy in 2016?
My own house. In my bedroom, drinking champagne and toasting the fact that I finally have a wall of books (now a wall and a half).
In my living room, when I got home from Glastonbury and put the little stained glass Tor my friends had given me in my window. Realising how lucky I am to have some truly brilliant people in my life, and to be in a flat that’s not falling down.
What was your biggest regret of 2016?
I’ve been trying to come up with something for ages but I don’t really regret much, if anything, from this year.
I suppose I’d say there were one or two times when I should have looked after myself better and put my own needs above – or at least on par with – other people’s, and I didn’t. I find that hard at the best of times, and there were points during 2016 when it was definitively not the best of times, and I should have looked out for myself more.
I’d say it’s more of a lesson learned than a regret, though.
I wonder what my answers will be at the end of 2017?