Sunday, January 02, 2011

My Year in 2010

2010 was a great year, but oh so hard! In fact, I'm still recovering from the insanity of it all!

Anyway, with a view to getting a clean slate to start the new year with, here is my review of the year:

My Year in... Work

2010 was a vast improvement over 2009. Back at the start of 2009, I had predicted that we were in for eighteen months of hell, after which things should hopefully get better. In the event, this turned out to be overly pessimistic, but only slightly.

On a personal level, I can justifiably claim I did some of my best work in 2010. However, because this was mostly done with our backs to the wall, we never really gained the benefit of this work. In 2011, though, I'm hopeful we can get out from under the backlog, and start making real progress for ourselves.

There were also some distinct plusses for my in 2010, but I can't really talk about them here.

Probably the biggest downside of 2010 was the difficulty of getting away from work. It seemed that almost every holiday had to be cancelled, shortened, moved back, or adjusted due to the all-consuming needs of the office. That's a large part of why I'm so exhausted now.

In 2011, I basically want more of the same, with some adjustments to how we do things to try to make things easier. Oh, yes, and a holiday now and then would be nice!

My Year in... Gaming

2010 was a very mixed year for gaming.

The RPG Meetup continues to go well. We've gained both in numbers, and also in the formation of a keen "core group" that makes the scheduling much easier. We've lost a couple of people, due to moves, but have gained others in the interim. In 2011, it should just go on in the same manner.

The other group is basically dead. We managed a handful of sessions in 2010, but only one in the latter half of the year. My plan currently is to wrap up the current campaign with this group, and then go to a different type of game (basically, a series of one-off games), unless and until we can manage more regular meetings.

Finally, there was the "Christmas Game", a one-shot game that I ran last week. Sadly, it didn't go very well - the players were fine, the system was fine, but I just wasn't "in the zone". Shame, really.

In 2011, I expect to be starting a new campaign, "The Eberron Code" with the Meetup group. It promises to be interesting.

My Year in... Band

2010 was the most successful year that the band has had since I joined.

We actually had a bad start to the season and a bad end to the season. However, the middle section was immensely successful, and has set us up for what looks to be a great year in 2011. We came seventh in the "Champions of Champions" table for our grade last year, narrowly missing the cut to be moved up to grade 4A. However, we've since recruited some new people, so may be being promoted after all.

Meanwhile, we're looking at the possibility of setting up a "Development Band" to bring through our younger players, which will improve things immensely.

The band also ran trips to Italy and Spain last year. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to attend either, but both were enjoyed by those who did go, and contribute to our success.

Finally, the band qualified for the main competition at both the World Championships (coming seventh overall) and at Cowal, these being the only two contests with a qualification phase. So, success there.

The only area where the band fell down last year was in finance. We made a (small) loss last year, which is itself fine, but it leaves the band with no financial reserves. So, this year we absolutely must make a profit; a tall order on top of everything else.

The goal for this year is simple: more of the same.

My Year in... Love

Still awesome.

My Year in... Resolutions

I didn't set any goals last year, except for the books target, which I actually sailed through. That being the case, there's not really anything to say here.

For 2011, I need to set some goals.

My Year in... Travel

A trip to Ireland with the band, which proved very successful, plus holidays in Keswick with Lady Chocolat and to France with the family. All were excellent.

My Year in... Faith

Things have improved in the last year, although in a nebulous way that's hard to express or quantify. All is well, for now.

My Year in... Health

Unfortunately, my neck still gives me occasional pain. It's not as bad as it was, but it definitely seems to be aggravated by both stress and the cold. Somewhat unfortunate, given my life, really!

Other than that, things are pretty good. I need to go back on my diet, as the bulk of the weight lost in 2008/09 has been gradually regained.

Mi Año en Español

I took two Spanish courses in 2010, one in January and the second in October. The first was really good, but unfortunately by the time the second had come around I'd lost a bit too much. The second course was therefore much harder, and with everything else that was going on I really didn't have the time to dedicate to it.

I have decided not to continue with the Spanish at the present time. My conclusion is that my understanding of the language is quite broad, but has almost no depth at all. Simply studying yet more would therefore be building on a shaky foundation.

Instead, I am considering options for practicing the language in the real world. Whether this is a holiday in Spain (or other Spanish-speaking course), or an "immersion course" remains to be seen. For now, though, it's on the back-burner.

My Year in Painting

Some months back, I posted about miniature painting, how I had given it up but sometimes thought about coming back to it. Well, at the end of November I did exactly that. I have since bought some new paints, and have painted a small number of miniatures.

I'm now assembling an Ork warband for painting, and may well invest in a small number of other figures to paint. The truth is, I do find it very relaxing, and it was only the psycholoigical pressure of having too many unpainted figures that caused me to eventually quit. So, if I'm careful about managing it...

Well, we'll see.

My Year... Overall

2010 was a great year. 2011 is going to be an awesome year. I have every confidence.

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