Well, for those of us left LIVING, anyway.
This year seems as though it was written by George RR Martin.
"Sorry....but your Character won't be in the New Season"
We have lost quite a few icons...Prince...Bowie...Mrs. Brady...Carrie Fisher...Debbie Reynolds...George Michael'''
As well as a few family & friends.
If anything happens to Keith Richards before Midnight...I will know the Apocalypse is upon us.
Still scribbling away at my first attempt of novel length fiction. Only about 1/2 way through the first draft. So much for the whole concept of writing a page a day, eh? Sounds good in theory...but the muse has ideas (or lack thereof) of her own. Fickle bitch.
Started the year in (virtual) Madrid, learned to make flan and churros with dipping chocolate. Experienced my first (and hopefuly last) bullfight. Have a Bull Bell now. Read Lorca and ate blood oranges.
Wished my Eldest a Happy 29th Birthday...and mourned the loss of Ziggy (David Bowie) .
Watched Ya'll Quaeda (The Bundy Bunch) as they Occupied (with firearms) a Federal Bird Sanctuary...were later arrested...and then acquitted. WTH???
Reconnected with my old friend, Laura who now lives in New York.
Checked out Seville, Andalusia, and the life of Picasso.
Followed into minutia the Primary Political Process this year...watched Hillary rig and steal the DNC nomination...and in the process slap the only decent man (candidate) in the face, and then lose the General Election...(A Miz Cleo Moment) and hand the Presidency to Trump.
And there are folks who don't believe in KARMA.
I watch the Broncos trounce South Carolina in Superbowl 50. No dabbing for Cam.
I toured (virtual) Granada.
I watched my oldest childhood friend, Pam, slowly come back from her Coma...recover...celebrated our Birthdays together with Lobster for what would be the last time...only to lose her forever in May.
I took the plunge and tried the Jeggings with an Oversized Sweater Look!
Not too bad!
I travelled Portugal (virtually), Checked out out their Maritime Museum, learned to make Bica, Sonhos, Rissoles, Ginjinha, Portuguese Bread, Pastis de Belam, and Lavadores, Bought a blue tile from Porto, Explored Alfama (the old city), and the Thieves Market. Checked out Obidos Castle and the Medieval Faire. Bought and tried all the various varieties of Portuguese Chocolate. Waxy and not very good.
Got sick with something between The Plague and Dysentery, and spent three relaxing fun-filled (sarcasm folks) days in the hospital. I blame the Portuguese Chocolate.
Read Lord Byron and toured Sintra.
Explored (Virtual) Naples, Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius, Read Virgil and Toured his tomb, bought a Corno necklace, learned to make Pizza Margherita, Stuffed Meatballs, and Pane di Sale di Mare. I tried Baci Chocolates!!! Outstanding! Also making Gelato. I learned The Tango.
We lost His Purpleness (Prince).
I turned 56 with much fanfare...and my Middle Grandson turned 6.
Finally admitted I was hopelessly helplessly addicted to Game of Thrones. Which is made more complicated by the fact I don't actually OWN a TV any more (by choice...since 2011)
Started a large kitchen garden with my Daughter-in-law! Also had Gardening Brunches throughout the season. (floppy hat optional...wine and wine glasses and shades mandatory)
I picked (and bought) morels and attended several car and art shows.
Spent a lot more time with family and friends.
Started (Virtually) The British Isles,Began in The Cotswolds. Love their sheep. Learned about the various forms of tea time and recreated a few. Learned some Cockney Slang. Ordered and tried a Curly Wurly...very nice. Virtually explored the Gardens and Pubs of Britain. Learned to make Pub Grub and a decent Scone.
Listened to the 100th running of the 500 Mile Race in Indianapolis.
Explored Ireland (virtually), attended an Irish Fox-hunt via You Tube firstperson rider vantage point, checked out Dublin, Bought chocolates from Dublin to be imported...fair. Visited Blarney Castle and The Wishing Stone.
Took each of my Grandchildren out individually for an adventure through the summer. Celebrated each of their Birthdays in the same manner.
Watched in Horror at the shootings at Club Pulse.
Tried to understand the implications of Brexit.
Watch the Season Finale of Game of Thrones...and now we wait...for what feels like ever...
Experienced the Thrill of Pokemon Go.
"Okay...a Caterpie...I caught a Caterpie..."
Learned what a Lokai Bracelet was and why I HAD to have one.
Now I do.
Watched as Turkey survive an attempted Coup.
Explored (virtual) Scotland, Learned about Blackhouses and how to make Oatcakes, Saw Highland cattle (cute shaggy things) and tried Highland (imported) Beef, learned about fault-lines and thrusts and checked out some ruins, bought a silver Celtic cross necklace, learned a bit of Gaelic and about Scottish Tartans and Clans, Read about Nessie and Loch Ness, was going to try to make a good single malt...ended up making Stout instead. Explored the Shetland Islands and Glamis Castle. Made Summer Pudding with fresh berries. Read Robert Burns. Tried Haggis, Tatties and Neeps. (bleah!) and Butter Tablet , which was as good as Haggis was bad. Wandered (virtually) through the ruins of St. Andrews Cathedral.
Nicole and I got tomatoes, beans, corn, squash, peppers, herbs and such from our garden. James made hot sauce from several varieties of peppers including our home grown Ghost peppers...and wants us to grow Carolina Reapers next year!
(these things even look bad ass)
Discovered the Mediterranean Sea (virtually) and even made a painting of part of its beauty. Bought a bit of lapis lazuli set in a sterling silver ring as a souvenir. The same color as the Sea. Travelled the Greek Isles of Corfu, Cypress, Hydra, Ithaka, and Crete (virtually). Learned a smattering of conversational Greek. Re-Created a writing retreat and spa day that Corfu offered. Learned to make Lemon Shrimp Scampi. A little about the Bouzuki and Greek Dance. Read about the Greek Gods. Enjoyed the laid back atmosphere of Hydra and all the cats!!! Reread Cavafy's Ithaka. Checked out the Samaria Gorge on Crete and tried Cretian Honey (imported) Really amazing stuff...the cypress, olive and citrus tree pollens make a taste specific to Crete honey. Delicious.
Explored Heraklion and the Palace of Knossos.
Celebrated my Youngest son's 27th birthday!
Created paper balls and flowers and helped Nicole put together an Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass birthday bash for Emma.
Mall Ratted Monthly with a Group of Friends all year.
Also met for Brunch with another group on a monthly basis.
Toured (virtually) the Heraklion Museum, the 10 best beaches of Crete, the castles of Crete, Ditki Cave (birthplace of Zeus), and learned to make Moussaka (exceptional). Checked out Athens and Sparta, and a few others of the 9 million ruins in Greece. Learned to make Tzaziki sauce and Tiropita and Pita Bread. Finished Greece in Santorini!
Enjoyed my Grands and (almost) brought home a new kitty.
Learned a new Fall Pie Recipe. (Apple Butter Pie)
Had a Mini-DS Gathering with Dave (from across the pond) and Jane and Betsy.
Enjoyed a beautiful Fall and a trip to Cataract Falls before they had to leave. Dave brought me stones from a rocky beach in Crete!!!
Both Betsy, and "Idgy's" Mom fought cancer. and were doing the whole chemo/radiation thing.
Enjoyed Halloween with the kids and grands.
Celebrated our Middle Son's 28th birthday!!!
Explored (virtual) Turkey...starting in Istanbul. Learned why the Turkish Waters are Green. Tried Turkish Delight. Learned to make Turkish coffee. Bought an Ibrik and a Copper filigree and porcelain demitasse. Researched reading the grounds. Took a Turkish Herb Bath and tried a Dead Sea Mud Masque. Learned about the Order of the Whirling Dervish, Belly Dancing and fell in love with Rumi. I learned to make Greek Yogurt. Read Gemell's Troy Trilogy and learned to make several Turkish dishes. Learned to write my name in Arabic. Still can't pronounce it. Discovered the Taurus Mountains, leaned about Pashmina and Hijabs, Took a virtual boat tour of the Lycian Coast,
Watched Donald Trump be elected as President.
Idiocracy was a documentary.
Suffered through DST again!!!! Enough already.
Had Thanksgiving with ALL my kids (except Lennon) and Grands! And "Friendsgiving" later with several good friends.
Reconnected with three friends I literally had not seen since my early 20's. So nice! We are all...er...much older these days.
Still as Notorious.
Learned about the myths of Bellephron, Pegasus, and the Chimera. Discovered the Chimera Mountain fires.
Saw Kayakoy (The Ghost City) and Topkapi Palace (virtually).
Enjoyed a last minute Adventure, combined birthdays and Teal and Brown beginning to December with Idgy!!!
Lost my friend Betsy to her year-long battle with Cancer.
Enjoyed meeting four times this year with my Seasonal old friend/past lover and we both are still celebrating the fact that we are both
Still Here (alive).
Still Close Friends.
We have both lost so many good friends/family in the past few years.It makes you appreciate the time you have in this life, I think.
Finished Mayes: A Year in The World with The Riddle of Home. Explored home as as a structure, a concept, a person, a smell, a memory, a food, a geographical location, tradition and routine, sounds and familiar stuff, and as a beginning and end.
A good exercise in insight.
Celebrated both Bodhi and Christmas with the kids, grands (both human and puppies) and later some of my friends. (Friendsmas)
Have Sundays reserved every week, now, for a Home Zen Retreat.
Finally got my Photo Trek accomplished.
Looking back over the past year...it's no wonder I am exhausted!
Now the house is quiet. Going to spend the day relaxing. I can undeck the halls tomorrow. Going to enjoy one last night of the Christmas Tree's dim glow. The presents gone now and Tucker lounging, sprawled, beneath.
"Idgy" and I are getting together (in the box) for wine, confetti and ushering in the New Year (...which has already arrived in Japan and Australia, btw...) using London Time (7 PM our time) and will be simultaneously streaming the celebration over the Thames at the stroke of "their" midnight. We will pop the cork and make a toast...toss some confetti...and still have time for a good dinner...deep bubble bath and a decent bedtime...lol!
Last year we celebrated in Rio time!
We were Brazil Nuts!
Time to say goodbye to 2016.