So that was 2013, eh?

Here we are again, at the end of another year. Despite knowing full-well that we had to come back it still feels like quite a marvel to be writing another year-end post in Uganda. Nevertheless, here I am under the mosquito net listening to the Jon Hopkins album I promised myself I’d spend more time with and thinking about just what came to pass in 2013. 

I spent a month in Africa, of all places. And what a month that was! We travelled, preached, pushed ourselves to the limit and beyond (hyperremesis is awful, don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise). That visit left a lasting impression and gave me inspiration for what I can do with my talents in 2014. 

Studies went well. Despite having a child and losing a grandparent I managed to keep up an A- average, which is something to smile about, which is not to minimize the fact that I became a father this year. That may be my greatest achievement to date! Sylvie is a great wee girl and although she tends to cry more often than not when I’m holding her she seems to like me too. I hope that lasts. She has my eyes. 

Sadly, the life of my grandfather, Professor Leonard Robinson, drew to its inevitible close on Independence Day this year (not that any Americans really read this blog). He was a wonderful, wise upright, generous and faithful man who has left a huge hole in our family with his passing, but after a 14-month battle with bowel cancer he is in an exponentially better place than he was when I said my goodbyes to him. I look forward to seeing him again.

2013 marks the end of a decade of change for me. I was actually remarking to my wife earlier that between my baptism in October 2003 and now I have become a husband, a father, a sax player, a writer and much more besides. It will be interesting to see how 35 year-old me has progressed. 

As I have already alluded to in earlier posts, 2013 was an awesome year for music and I shall be listening to releases I missed well into 2014. Being able to resurrect my other grandfather’s old hi-fi has definitely revitalized my home listening and my attachment to vinyl as a format. Long may that continue! Technology was interesting to watch (no puns intended) with the rise of such gadgets as the smart watch, Google Glass, the smart ring and the Oculus Rift. I wonder how long it will be before these are superseded by implantable computing. Think I’ll stick with a Pebble watch, thanks. Oh, before I shift off technology, it’s been nice to see Nokia regaining a bit of mindshare these days. I plan to get both my parents onto Lumia phones in the coming year.

So what else do I plan to do with 2014 other than get my parents hooked on Windows Phone? Well, I plan to graduate, I plan to try my best at fathering, I plan to do more music writing (watch this space) and I plan to cycle further than I ever have in my life (quite a feat for someone who doesn’t currently own a bike). But I am still a Christian and one thing that Christians know is that God doesn’t stick to the plans of men. Now if you’re an atheist or agnostic or a capitalist you can write that off as rubbish. As for me, I would not be the man I am today without God in my life. Bearing that in mind I pray the same prayer for New Years every year, but slightly altered; that this new year leaves me a better person than last year did and that 2015 will leave me better still.

See you in 2014.

(…he writes knowing everyone in GMT+12 is already there.)