This is maybe getting a little in the weeds but I like to start the new year by wrapping up the last one, even in this ridiculous Groundhog Day of a global pandemic I am living through. The plant I took home a few years ago got a new pot that it seems to like. I am now a person who mists my plants on the regular.
- libraries visited – list just keeps getting shorter
- books read – it was an exceptional year for reading
- places stayed – I am still dreaming about going places, but at least I went a few places this past year.
- other events — I am starting to really dislike Medium’s formatting options so maybe I do this on my blog next year, but it’s here for now.
There’s snow on the ground here and Jim is on his way home from a shortish New Year’s visit (compared to an extended Xmastime visit, pix) and I’m back from a walk and regrouping and thinking what makes sense for this year. I did a lot of walking last year, 650 miles, and I think it helped. Working on my compassion for myself and others. Pulling out a few Wikipedia projects that are enjoyable–mainly uploading images of recently-deceased people, contemplating a blog post called “How You, Too, Can See Dead People”–and marveling that after all this time and MANY home improvement projects completed, I still don’t seem to be able to mop my kitchen floor. We managed to clean out the Magic Castle but still need to replace its septic. If you think you might know someone who wants to buy it before then, there’s a little FYI website here. Hoping to be able to continue to stay the course this year, wishing everyone luck and courage in dealing with adversity and the unknown.
Slightly more exciting than last year, but not a lot more. I stayed at my mother’s house as we were cleaning it out a LOT this summer. Most weekends for two months. And I stayed at my sister’s place a few times. And I stayed at my dad’s place twice. That’s the report. Compared to last year–zero days stayed anywhere else–it felt like a lot, but still no weird hotels, quirky AirBnBs, or any other fun travel. I have a tentative plan to go give a live talk, pandemic willing, in New York this summer, will be interesting to see how close I get to it.
Past years: 2020, 2019 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 2007, 2006, 2005.
This wrap up is a lot different from last years, but this plant is still chugging along, kind of, as am I. Here are my year-end lists in total.
- libraries visited – shorter than usual
- books read – not as long as you’d think
- places stayed – bit of a bummer here, I don’t think I’ve spent a year only sleeping in one place… in my entire life. When I dream, I dream about going places.
- other events — i.e. timeline of big events in 2020 that I remembered, longer than you’d think!
2021 has come in nice and snowy and Vermont remains a place I am very pleased to have landed in the late 90s. I’ve got a lot of winter hobbies that can basically double as COVID hobbies–cooking, Wikipedia, keeping all these plants alive, writing letters–and about as much work as I want. Wishing the same for everyone else: may you have hobbies you like and enough time to do them, may you have as much work as you want, may you sleep at night and dream of better days.
Well this post is pretty simple this year. I stayed at my dad’s house on December 30th last year, woke up and drove to Randolph and have not slept anywhere besides my own bed since then. I haven’t gotten on an airplane since late 2019. I’ve only left the state four times and that was just to go hiking or walking with Jim. Am not thrilled about most of this, but mostly resigned to continuing to try to do the right thing and see what I can do to help other people’s 2021 not be as much of a shit show as 2020 was for so many.
Past years: 2019 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 2007, 2006, 2005.
So I got all my wrap-ups written and here’s the short list
I’m a few days behind last year but more or less on schedule. And like last year, January is a Wikipedia month, staying busy writing articles and making edits. I’ve made sure that all the library associations in the New England states (including NELA) have at least stub-length articles. Only one of them (MLA, Massachusetts, not Maine) was even written a month ago. If you’re reading this and you’re interested in helping make articles for state library associations (so many left to do) ping me, I have a formula.
I know it’s not surprising to Very Online people, though it does surprise local folks, but tech projects make me happy. The big hurdle this month was slowly moving the Vermont Library Association to membership software from the unpleasant spreadsheet that they had been using. Tough work! Slow going! But rewarding because it’s going to make future stuff that much simpler. Next up: moving VLA website to a new web host and getting a new WordPress theme working so it looks a little more kempt. Then maybe I’ll look at my own stuff. Phone needs a new battery (I have the battery, and tools, but lacking motivation). Taxes need assembling. There’s really no end to the tech tidying I could do but I’m also trying to attend to real life stuff. Applesauce making. Friend visiting. Dish washing. Bird feeding. Plant tending.
The little plant in the picture is one I got from the library. I’m not even sure how it happened just I was there and at some point I was walking home with a plant in my hand. I got a new rack to put more plants on. I can hear my mother’s voice “This is how it starts….” Well okay then, let’s get started.
Really serious about staying out of airplanes now. Two airplane trips this year. A low key summer not feeling terrific. Lots of time doing more local stuff and not regretting it at all.
Here is the short list of places. Four states. Stars indicate multiple visits to the exact same place. Past years: 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 2007, 2006, 2005.
- Westport MA* – here most of the summer, in many of the beds
- Stow MA* – visiting my sister
- Cambridge MD – a great quickie trip to a great conference
- Meredith NH – another great location for a conference, less-great hotel
- Grafton VT – weird old inn, intensive conference
- Burlington VT – staying with friends for an overnight for a humanities conference
- Tampa FL – really quirky AirBnB with lovely folks
This picture is actually my sister’s bed, which I did not sleep in, because I was bad at taking photos this year. This was the year I said “No more travel!” after the summertime and mostly meant it. I did only three airplane trips this year and actually forgot to take a photo of the most exotic place I stayed, a sort of dorm room situation in Hawai’i. I wish I could say I enjoyed all this travel but it was sort of a down year for me and I didn’t rise to it. I took good pictures and I generally had that “Sitting in the backyard wrapped in a blanket” feeling to a lot of it. Sort of safe and comfortable but also sort of pining for home.
Here are all the places. Four states. Two provinces. Stars indicate multiple visits to the exact same place. Past years: 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 2007, 2006, 2005.
- Boxboro MA* – here a lot doing various cleaning things. I do love this room.
- Westport MA* – here most of the summer and many of the holidays
- Toronto ON – wanted to stay at a friends but he was very sick and this trip was both enjoyable and a total bummer
- Montréal QC – my friends’ new house, super fun
- Brooklyn NY – the funniest looking bed with the best hosts
- Manoa HI – ups and downs here, I wish this excellent place was not right next to a bus stop
- Canandaigua NY – -this was a good trip but I should have stayed in a little motel
- Stow MA* – Kate got the guestroom up and running again! Always great to stay here
- Washington DC – a funny little hotel right by the train