Tuesday, 29 December 2015

2015

Another year over, another year older and despite a feeling of doing absolutely nothing all year, I guess I was busy through it all.
Compared to life before Jeremy, it isn't as glamorous as it was. The idea that life as an expat is all glamour and living the high life, certainly does not reflect reality unless of course I was paid the same as I would be for the same job in England, but I am not so it can't be compared. However, there are still lots of times I have been able to explore the city and do other things. I would, of course like to travel more and explore more but when you have to consider everything that involves, it won't happen as often. So that means then that every time I go somewhere, I make the most of it and try to enjoy things a lot more and soak up what is around me.
Jeremy through the year has developed no end; His humour, his moods, his level of spoken language both in Indonesian and English. He motor skills and coordination have all grown and he is becoming his own person in his own right. What needs to happen now is to have integrate with more children his own age and to learn social concepts and behaviors to make him understand new skills such as sharing and being kind to others especially strangers. Thats next year.

For now a review of what happpened in 2015.

January

With the rain and floods and work I spent the month really working. Car free days were fun as that involved taking Jeremy out into the city on a Sunday as were swimming weekends


February

The floods finally hit the city and a few days were lost by my team who couldn't come to work. The floods only seemed to last a week on and off, and they hit different parts of the city at different times.
I finally was diagnosed with Typhus after a couple of months of wondering why I was so tired and ill and even took a week off work for bed rest, which of course was not that possible with Jeremy so it was more like rest and play.
My company celebrated 50 years as a business world wide and that was good. We had a mini gathering and a cake and toasted EF Education Firsts birthday and got new tshirts.


March

March saw me still being ill although I was finally clear of any illness and life continued. The road building work around my area began in earnest and so travelling to and from work became just that little bit harder and longer.



April

I became old. The reason I became old is I finally had to accept there are times when I need to wear glasses, although not all the time. The amount of screen time I have and looking at different sized screens containing text started to give me headaches so I had to buy some reading glasses to correct this. I still don't wear them often but now and again when I feel my eyes hurt or I start getting headaches again.



May

May kicks off with Jeremy's birthday and starts the cake eating season as there are many people and family with birthdays in May and June. We celebrated Jeremy's birthday at home with cake and presents as he was still not fully aware of what was happening around him. I think his 3rd birthday will be completely different as he is learning about these things and will know something is up. He was spoiled by all and had a very happy day.
I was also lucky enough to pay a visit to the Thousand Islands north of Jakarta for a weekend. This was our annual Centers team outing and with it falling on a long holiday weekend we took the plunge and went to the islands for 2 days snorkeling and boat rides and relaxing which was great.



June

I turned 43 in June and took the day with my wife to enjoy it. I also went to Singapore for the first time in a year and that was a fun day out. It was also my first flight of the year.
My phone died and after some anxious moments, I had it restored at the LG service center free of charge and it is now as excellent as ever.



July

With Ramadhan in June and July Car free day become less frantic and more enjoyable as there were less people there but we never really did anymore once Idul Fitry came and went due to the hordes of people, runners and cyclists which caused problems with Jeremy as he wanted to run as well. However 2 year olds do not perceive dangers so we had to stop going.
I took a random bike ride to the  West Java coast with every intention of staying over the night but with the influx of traffic and crowds it was not to be and so I had an 18 hour round trip through amazing countryside and interesting roads. I think I saw the sea before we turned around and went back. It was exhausting.
I also took the family to Bali for a cheap holiday (well cheapish) and we stayed in an amazing hotel and enjoyed doing nothing for 3 days. We enjoyed it even more as this was the start of the volcanoes in East Java erupting so Bali Airport closed down and so we had to wait for an extra day for flights to go again. It was suddenly not so cheap! But it was a great holiday and a peaceful one. I also discovered Jeremy likes the sea a bit but not sand. But he does like grass now. Sand will grow on him I think.



August

I had a new teacher arrive in August and another depart for medical reasons. It was my first Airport pick up for a very long time and in the middle of the night as well but no bother.
We stayed in the Mulia hotel for a night and enjoyed 5 star luxury and I must admit, I do like these free nights. I also like Jeremy running around the foyer and watching the staff being uncertain as to what to do with him as he is happy but not loud just running and touching things with dad running after him telling him not touch things.



September

I met an old friend and his wife for the first time since 2007 and we spent some time catching up and drinking beer. Nothing too amazing about this, except he comes from Canada and took time to visit my family. That bit is more special for me.
I returned again to Singapore for another visit and some shopping, which was nice. I also started teaching again in St. Ursula but this time with the High School students which has proven to be a big challenge for me and learning to balance everything; work, school and home, but it is fun nevertheless.



October

A dry rain free month of not much. Work and shopping and lazing in malls when me and Yovita had the chance. I spent nearly all my free time with Jeremy and teaching him and playing with him which is always fun.



November

I discovered the joys and stiff leg pain of riding on motorbike taxis and have not stopped doing it. GoJek became a more useful option as the police checks across the city at the time I was riding were becoming a nuisance and I really never fancy being stopped and having to pay out for no reason at all. Paying 15,00 idr for a one way trip is good enough even if I have to hold on for dear life and navigate the way there and back. It is still worth it.
EF held its annual conference in Surabaya and so this was an opportunity to visit a different city and enjoy a few nights in a decent hotel with good food and company as well as learn and share whats happening with colleagues from around the country. A free bar helped this along.  And whilst I never won any prizes, there is always next year!
The rain finally started to fall although not by much but it signaled the start of the rainy season.



December

No early mornings as my inschool classes finished have left me with lots of time with Jeremy in the morning as well as more GoJek rides and better time at work with my job.
Christmas started here with the malls all competing for the best Christmas effects. Happily I haven't been to many so I can't say which is best.
The rain has become more constant and there has been a little flooding here and there but nothing too great.
We took Jeremy to Waterbom, a large water park for a Sunday morning and that was great fun for him as all he did was splash and run about and enjoyed his time there. We stayed for around 3 hours. That was long enough.
Yovita sadly was in hospital for a few nights as she was sick but has since recovered and all is well. This brings me up bang up to now and having been to Singapore for some Christmas shopping and enjoyed a quiet Christmas with my family (separate post for that) I am kicking back and going to look forward to spending New Years eve with my family and enjoy that. With the help of some vodka.






And that was my year. Action packed enough all things considered and equally as tiring. I wonder what 2016 will bring. Hopefully bigger and better things....



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