2012 In Review – 2nd Cup of Tea On Mount Everest (nearly)

Fittingly it is New Years Eve. What better night for a review?

I was born in 1976 – hold on, don’t leave – I promise it won’t be a review that long! But in the Chinese calendar, this makes me a dragon and according to that very same calendar, following its twelve year cycle, this was to be a year perfect for dragons. This I learned rather late in the year from a new friend and fellow dragon-travel blogger Nomadbiba. At the time it came as great relief, if somewhat diluted by the fact that I was already a good three months into what was to be ‘my year’ (and not another such occasion for twelve years after that remember) and so far, on the surface at least, little had changed on 2011.

Now, as the hours tick away and Australians are already sleeping it off, I am clinging to the relief that following that calendar, the time of dragons does not officially end until February 9th. That gives me five weeks to get things right.

Here Be Dragons, But Not For Much Longer...

Here Be Dragons, But Not For Much Longer…

It has certainly been an eventful year. As per usual many many miles I have covered, with more flights and airmiles missed (I am so bad at remembering to tick that box) than I care to recall. Too many, far too many. I love my job dearly and I cannot see myself ever switching career entirely, but if 2012 is to teach me something, it is that, new ways must make way for old ones, travel will continue, but with a modicum of root establishing.

This time last year, I found myself in the worlds most polluted and coldest capital, about to go to bed early as I had an extremely early wake up the next morning to go and see the first sunrise of the year, a tradition Mongolians (for that was my location) believes brings great luck. At the time, all drunk on Mongolian vodka, as the sun resolutely refused to rise – or at least penetrate the falling snow, we laughed it off – something about snowflakes bringing even greater luck.

Shortly thereafter my dormant passion for 2nd Cup Of Tea was reborn and blogging and my modest articles published here have undoubtedly provided some of the highs of the year. I look forward to continue to grow my site for the benefit of friends and family who seek advice on destinations as well as my pleasure in writing here again this next year.

2012 also brought incredible highs from travel. Some of the best days of my life have come this year, sometimes I was alone, such as when exploring the lagoon in Venice, sometimes in company of friends and clients even, on tour. One of the best breaks of my life came on a very short holiday to Corsica this summer, something I will never forget and I owe so much to L for showing me her beloved Tuscany and everything that involved. Travel at its best.

A Snap Shot of My Mind?

A Snap Shot of My Mind?

However a New Years Eve that involves blogging and later cat sitting is perhaps a hint of the darker side of travel. It IS a sacrifice. Yes I know I am very lucky as I am constantly told. Yes I know I have a great job as generally follows. But it is not always as easy as it looks. 2012 has been the year in which my passion for the job has been tested and stretched more than ever before. No question the job and lifestyle are great, but are they worth the sacrifices?

It has been a year of so much turmoil and confusion, seemingly never ending decisions to make – where to go next, where to sleep, whose house to borrow next, how, not least, on earth to try to make a relationship work, when you are never there and when you are, exhausted. I saw a Kandisky exhibition in Pisa not long ago. What a genius. It was a particular moment in my life and I was captivated by his work. The above painting entitled movement, seemed a portrait of the goings on in my mind that day. This is when you really connect with art.

Travel, though perhaps an addiction is certainly also escapism. It in itself never provides the answer. It may bring greater understanding and make us realise who we are, or perhaps more, who we are not, but it is rarely the answer in itself. I have learned that whereas I fly to destinations and get there fast, parts of the mind, the thoughts, the issues, the troubles, seem to drive – you are given a short break, but after three or four days, there is a knock on your hotel door, and reality has caught up.

As the year ends, not in the fashion I had imagined, but still with hope and looking forward to what lies ahead, one can only try to look back, reflect upon the good one did, the right decisions one made, deeply regret the mistakes and seek forgiveness for the bad and take only best into the next year.

It has been a year of immense love and more life than I had perhaps bargained for, but never a dull moment. In 2013 I would like a little more dull please. Unless I am mistaken we move to the year of the snake next, perhaps a slightly calmer year than one of dragons lies ahead? Once upon a time they used mark the edges of maps – the scary unknown with the words ‘here be dragons’ . These unknowns have been well and truly explored this year, so I think the dragons that I found there are ready for a snooze – 12 good long years.

To you all, thanks for 2012, you know who you are and I hope our roads cross again soon. For one person, it seems almost impossible to find a way to make them cross and to that person I want to type my last words of the year, from the poem by Patrick Kavanagh;

On Raglan Road on an autumn day I met her first and knew
That her dark hair would weave a snare that I might one day rue;
I saw the danger, yet I walked along the enchanted way,
And I said, let grief be a fallen leaf at the dawning of the day

Here is the report with the fascinating stats on where you all came from… Thanks so much for reading and see you in 2013…

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,300 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 9 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

~ by 2ndcupoftea on December 31, 2012.

4 Responses to “2012 In Review – 2nd Cup of Tea On Mount Everest (nearly)”

  1. Have a wonderful 2013, may it bring you love and hapiness. Maybe your travels will bring you this way. Your bed and car is ready to go!

  2. Happy New Year Tom! What a year! This year is my year – the year of the snake so hopefully it will bring all that it promises! Hope your travels bring you to Australia again someday soon!

  3. Lovely article 007! Here’s hoping for a super fantastic year for you. My you fly forever young Thomas.

  4. Thomas, you have put words (ever so eloquently) to what so many of us experience and feel. Here’s to a great 2013 and year of the snake!

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