That was '10 and this is Now
I ended the year on strange note: Tom Waits will be among those elected to the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame this go round, while my other all-time favourite gruff-voiced songsmith, Captain Beefheart died at the age of 69.
I barely made it through two French speaking countries yet my table companion at the big office Christmas party speaks fluent French and said when he's in France he likes to speak French. I was so impressed, and he's only a few years older than me.
I did surprise him with a good language anecdote before becoming too drunk to keep up such banter.
He left early. Others left early. I went on to the next pub with the hardier soles, including our director.
This was the year that I made a connection with my Dad's past
and truly went abroad, ahead of the maelstrom.
It seems every year now I read of misfortune on reflecting back over the year. I think 2010 was a cracker of a year. I caught up with my good mate, stayed at my sister's house in the English countryside, visited the home of the Bard, went through the many drawing rooms of Windsor Castle, and climbed the many steps of St Paul's Cathedral
We soaked up the sun on the Seine and strolled the canals of Amsterdam. We visited van Gogh Museum, Reijksmuseum, and sections of the Louvre. We climbed the crawlspace of Anne Frank House and the bell tower of Westerkerk.
Back home, I'm the shoveller with sunburn so - with the days getting even hotter - have started going outside in the eve.