Before we gear up for an action-packed 2017, I thought of looking back at my year 2016, so I can analyse how last year went by, and how I can do things better this year. So here is a month-wise breakdown of how I spent 2016.
Fresh off my successful 2015 reading challenge of reading 18 books throughout the year, I started the year determined to read at least 14 books throughout 2016, including giants such as the last two parts of the Song of Ice and Fire, The Goldfinch and others. Sadly, I failed the 2016 challenge as I ended the year reading just 5 books, and I could not even complete half of A Feast for Crows. I intend to turn this around in 2017 though.
It was a month of reuniting and socialising, as I spent a decent amount of time with my friends. I think it is an important part of my life as I am always a happier person when I am seeing my friends often.
I took a couple of weeks off and I went home for my brother's marriage. It's such a rarity to see even my parents nowadays. Being with them for 2 whole weeks, and as a bonus, meeting tons of my relatives I haven't seen in years, all celebrating together was a great experience.
|This guy here has nothing to do with the marriage. I just like the photo, so I posted it under March.|
My first ever trek was to a place called Bandajje falls. The 4-5 hour trek was one of the most difficult things I had ever done in my life (and I had a slipped disk, or a back injury for those who are not aware of what a slipped disk is, at that time). But it was a great experience for me, as it unlocked a new passion for me. I went for few more treks later last year, which I have mentioned below, and my love for trekking just kept getting more and more.
My parents decided to pay me a visit for a week. We lazed around at home, my mom made awesome food, and it was just the most amazing week ever in Bangalore for me.
My birthday, and I have no pictures of that. My friends came to my place to celebrate, with a lot balloons that too, and I was really happy. That's one day of the year where you get so much attention, so you can't really hate it can you? My colleagues also got me a cake, which was delicious. Yet I only have a picture of the dessert I had made for my friends.
The entire office got up one weekend and decided to go to Coorg. We did almost nothing, lazed around most of the time, played cards, made some music, played taboo, but it was a lot of fun.
Coorg is very scenic, and I was successful in capturing a few decent photographs too.
Later that month, I made my way to Nandi hills, which is around 60 kms from Bangalore. I wanted to see the sunrise, but it was very cloudy that morning, so the first time I saw the sun, it was somewhere on top of my head at around 9 AM in the morning. So just settle for a selfie folks!
Made my way to Delhi to meet my girl. We missed her birthday in July, but gifted her a polaroid. Look how happy she is!
I paid a visit to the Humayun's tomb. It was a very hot day, but I like the pictures I took, so I think it was worth the pain.
Early in the month, I got an update from one of our clients. He was advertising the project I was working on, and he sent me this. Anyone interested in buying an apartment in Thane, you can go for this one!
I am not a party animal, actually far from it. Yet later in the month I went for a couple of them with my colleagues. I had a good time surprisingly.
I kicked off the month with my second ever trek. Accompanied by around 10 of my friends, I scaled Kumara Parvatha, arguably one of the most difficult treks in South India. It was an incredible experience. The monsoon/post monsoon season was a perfect time to go for a trek there, as it was lush green all around (although monsoon meant lots of leeches and a slippery path all the way, but it is all worth it!)
My love affair with treks continued. During November, I went for 2 more treks, first to Tadiyandmol in Coorg. It was another unique experience as I went for the trek with Bangalore mountaineering club, which meant that I had 12-13 strangers for company. But by the end of it all, we had a lot of fun together, and it hardly felt like we had known each other for less than 48 hours.
Later that month, I went for another trek to Kudremukh. It was even more scenic, more difficult (I like difficult treks), and hence, more fulfilling an experience. One more positive out of these treks is that I started wielding my camera a lot more (and a lot better I feel).
Another month and another trek story, this time Top Station in Munnar, Kerela. The trek was longer than Kudremukh, but easier. The beauty of the landscape is beyond words, and I clicked away wildly. Overall an amazing experience, just like every other trek I have been a part of.
After all the adventures throughout the year, I had a quiet 31st December with one of my best friends. Couldn't have asked for a better way to end the year.
I have named my blog 'Blissful existence' for a reason. I always try to focus on the positive side of any situation and be happy and grateful for the way things turn out to be, rather than whine and complain about how it couldn't have been worse. So rather than regretting about the things I couldn't do last year, I would rather be celebrating everything I did right last year, and remain hopeful that whatever I couldn't do right, I will turn things around this year. So what made 2016 a productive year for me? Well here are the most important ones.
I am not saying I am a great photographer, or even a photographer. I am still learning the art, and it is a long way for me to confidently say that I am exceptional at this thing. But I am happy that I used my camera more than ever, and in the process, have definitely gotten better. I hope I get even better at it this year, and it can only be done if I keep trying.
The 'long exposure' shots below are a good example of something 'new' that I learnt this year.
I did 5 treks overall in the year, and I loved each one of them. Treks can be challenging, difficult at times, but at the same time they very exciting and rejuvenating. I hope I do many more treks this year.
Hasn't been the best year for cooking, but I did make a few good dishes. Some good chicken, dal makhani and aloo paneer were the standout ones.
I do not remember too many amazing food items I have gone out and eaten. I should do that a little more this year.
ART RELATED STUFF
I don't know what really to caption this, because I do not have one particular direction in the world of art. Whenever I feel like, I start drawing, or writing, or paper cutting, or playing an instrument. Again, didn't do a lot last year, but this year is definitely going to be different.
Special mention to my colleague Hitha Kamal for lending me her guitar. I play it quite often, and have definitely gotten much better.
Finally, in terms of office work, I am very positive about the times ahead. In addition to the building coming up in Thane, I have a corporate building for Paragon coming up in Bangalore. Construction will start this year, and I am really looking forward to this one!
That's all about my 2016. I wish all you readers a very happy and productive 2017!