So it's time for hallowed tradition to make its presence felt once more. I'm talking, of course, about my year-end list of moments, people and things that made an impact on my life. How it matters to the rest of the world is a question I choose not to ask.
1. Changing jobs and moving into the suburbs was probably the best thing I did this year. I'm so relaxed these days, compared to the nail chewing frenzy that was last year. And it's nice to have a bit more than spare change in the wallet.
2. My apartment! I love, love, love the single red wall in the living room, my cozy cane couch that's perfect for post dinner reading and the airy kitchen where I actually feel like cooking after spending last year in a dingy passageway that passed for a kitchen. I love going home these days!
3. A and I became a regular popcorn couple this year. We watched movies with amazing regularity, almost once a week. Sometimes we were spoiled for choice and at other times we watched movies so bad that we couldn't even laugh at them afterwards. However, it has enabled me to hand out my very own year-end movie awards. Hold your breath (or don't) as I present the inaugural edition of the Filmy Flavour Icecream Awards!
The Rum and Raisins Award goes to the movies that were so rich, so well done and so taut that I don't recall how much popcorn I ate while watching them - The Dark Knight, Kung Fu Panda, Wall E and Welcome to Sajjanpur.
The Synthetic Flavour Award goes to the movies that were unforgivably mundane inspite of promoting themselves as 'different' - Madhur Bhandarkar's preachy, cliched, overlong and screechy Fashion (which A characterized as the local train version of high fashion) and the supremely homophobic Dostana (I mean really, hotdogs?).
The Vanilla Award for a movie that was so wonderfully familiar to everyone who has ever lived in Delhi, coupled with flashes of humour and some good acting - Oye Lucky Lucky Oye.
The Empty Cup Award for a movie without a single redeeming feature, not even unintentional humour - Drona.
The Butterscotch Award for the one that really warmed my heart in the most surprising ways - Das Vidanya.
4. Having an apartment also meant that I bought more books than was wise, aided by the fact that a bookstore sits prettily near my favourite movie theatre. I mostly binged on Amitav Ghosh this year. I also really enjoyed Jhumpa Lahiri's latest. However, the find of the year is undoubtedly A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, which is going a long way in undermining my deep ignorance of things scientific.
5. I'm now an aunt to a very pretty little boy who's less than a month old. It's the strangest feeling in the world, having someone in the family who's younger to me by a whole generation. I'm going to have the experience repeated twice in the coming year.
6. I met A's family after quaking in my boots for more than a year. And the waiting was much more terrifying than the actual meeting which passed off rather pleasantly.
7. It was the year of the spectacular return of belly fat.
8. I caught myself breaking into a cold sweat once when I was out on the street and a car backfired. That was the moment when terrorism became real to me.
On a concluding note, I hope that 2009 has less excitement because I really don't think my stomach can stand it. I hope the year's generally less overwhelming than this year has been, and that people can take some time off being happy. And I'm hoping for a worldwide moratorium on firearms. No harm in hoping, right?
To all my friends, readers who have lasted another year and people whom I should call tonight but may be thwarted by forgetfulness, laziness or swamped telephone networks, have a wonderful year ahead. Love and best wishes, S.