2011 – That was the year that was!

endWell it’s New Year’s Eve again and it’s time for me to take a retrospective look at the year that was 2011 and what it was all about…

The start of the year was filled with some trepidation in that I had only just started a new job and was already facing an eye operation. As I was on probation it couldn’t have come at a worse time. Unfortunately things took a turn for the worse as within minutes of going under the anaesthetic I started having complications and had to revived immediately. I won’t forget the night I spent in hospital shaking violently from the anaesthetic. It was literally third time lucky "Remember your 3D glasses or you'll be seeing this in only one-half D"before I had my final operation. In the end I spent almost 3 months off work due to complications and waiting for the next available surgery slot. I’ve also had to learn to live with only seeing things in “one-half D” as the sight in my right eye hasn’t returned to what it was. C’est la vie!

While returning to work after being off for so long presented its own challenges, it took a while for me to get back into the groove and find my mojo. But it’s just like riding a bike, you never forget (unless you’ve never ridden at all…!).

As far as holiday’s went I stayed home and carried on working while the rest of my family stayed in sunny Somerset for a few weeks over Summer. This didn’t mean that I had no time off, in fact I had 25 days leave to use up before the end of the year! So I’ve had more time off than most people get to have!

2011 wasn’t all full of doom and gloom there were some good things too. Although I had missed seeing my all time favourite band Rush on their Time Machine tour due to lack of cash and steep ticket prices I was able to get involved in designing and managing the Rush convention website http://www.rusheucon.co.uk/.

Because of shift rota’s I was in no position to make the pilgrimage north of the border to Glasgow. A shame really as they’re a great bunch and I haven’t seen many of the gang since 2007. I’m involved in the refresh of the site again for next year’s convention, hopefully the gods of Olympus will smile on me and say “You can go Mike!”. One thing’s for sure I’ll need to get some serious drinking practice in so I can get in shape for the carnage that is EuCon!

I also got involved in hosting not only my own website but also a Minecraft and Garry’s Mod server http://www.nightmaresurvival.co.uk/. As a result of this I succumbed and finally got myself a copy of Minecraft. Hopefully in the next year I’ll be in a position to upgrade the server.

To be honest most of this year has flown by with constant work and lots of laughs in between. When I think of some of the places I’ve worked (like “Spacely Sprockets”) and how people were treated I consider myself to be very fortunate to be where I am. My wife says that I’ve always come home from work happy and that speaks volumes! It also goes without saying that when you get a *nice* Christmas bonus and not a year’s membership in the “Jelly of the month club” (National Lampoons Xmas Vacation) makes for a great end of year gift.

Looking back I think that this year has probably been one of the better ones I’ve had. There are more ups than downs this time. Back in 2010 I was at the threshold of hell with all the problems of being out of work during a recession. This year I feel like I’m clawing my way back slowly and am finally on the road to recovery.

So here’s wishing you all a successful and prosperous New Year wherever you are! Now where’s my beer Winking smile