2011: Year in Review
As I look back on 2011 I can’t help but get a little emotional. This year has been a memorable one thus far, to say the least. There have been ups and downs, but for the most part it has been one of the best years in my life (so far).
In January I was still travelling overseas. Following on from Los Angeles, San Diego, Tijuana, Las Vegas, New Orleans, Miami, Key West, Cozumel, Washington DC. I spent January in New York, Toronto, Montreal, Chicago and back to Los Angeles.
New York – I was living my dream of walking through Central Park, visiting the Statue of Liberty and standing atop the Empire State Building, overlooking the city below.
Toronto – I got up-close with some adorable squirrels, it was so tempting not to take one home with me.
Montreal – I was immersed in the French-Canadian culture.
Chicago – I fell in love with this city. I could imagine myself living there.
Los Angeles – I spent three days at Wrestle Reunion 5, meeting the legends of wrestling. I attended my first US independent wrestling show, Ring of Honor and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. I was introduced to wrestlers I had never heard of and fell in love with wrestling all over again.
Having the opportunity to attend Wrestle Reunion was an experience I will never forget. There I was surrounded by people brought together by a shared love of wrestling: from young to old wrestlers, fans and the promoters.
I’ve never been somewhere with such positive energy before. The love and passion exuding from the wrestlers really hit me emotionally. Rowdy Roddy Piper, Jimmy Hart, Shane Douglas and Colt Cabana were stand outs for me. They all took so much time to engage with people, talking one-on-one, having proper conversations with fans.
Never mind being star struck, I got so much from this experience. I was at the recording of the first live Art of Wrestling podcast taping between Colt Cabana and Shane Helms.
I got to see the legendary band, INXS at a Day on the Green. While I would give anything to have seen the original INXS pre-1997 with Michael Hutchence, JD Fortune did justice to every single song. The support acts Train, Sean Kelley and the Baby Animals were perfect examples of talented live performers.
In August I changed jobs, transferring stores to work in a different department. Despite the drama involved in obtaining my transfer, it was the best decision I could have made. I now go to work with a smile on my face as the people I work with are all so friendly and accepting. While it’s not a job that I wish to make my career, it suits me for now.
• Bryan Adams – I was front row at the Melbourne leg of his Bare Bones Tour. It was just Bryan and his guitar and a pianist. All his greatest hits stripped back, he was perfection.
• Craigy Lee – I attended the 1st Annual Melbourne Tattoo & Body Art Expo where I got tattooed by Craigy Lee. We had sent ideas back and forth for several weeks until we finally settled on a design. Close to six hours of tattooing, and one swollen leg later, this was the result:
I was chosen as one of 30 Roving Reporters for the Victorian Government’s Youth Central website. If it wasn’t for my mum’s persistence I don’t think I would have applied. It was nice to see how proud she was of me, to achieve something outside of school, in the real world.
Seeing Stevie Nicks perform live is a moment I never want to forget. I spent the night struggling to hold back tears. Her unique voice and story-telling ability through song is what has always drawn me to her.
Check out my review of Stevie Nicks on the YouthCentral website.
2011 has been one of my busiest years. I may still have my old sarcastic/negative comments and mindset at times, but at the end of the day I can now smile. Rather than giving in to the pressure of being someone I am not, I am embracing my differences. It may be cliché, but life really is too short to waste time on such trivial matters.
I ended a friendship that had run its course. I may have not gone the right way about it, but for me it was the closure that I needed.
I have taken positive steps towards my education and developing new skills for my future career, whatever that may eventually be. I have a new found desire to learn and be able to apply what I have learnt to my various art projects.
After all the years of talking, I finally put in my application for the US Visa Diversity Lottery. There is only a small chance that I will be one of the lucky ones, but I’m focusing on staying positive. It has always been my dream to live and work in the US and I won’t give up until I achieve it.
I found inspiration. I found myself once again. Movies. Wrestling. Art. Writing. Reading. Photography. This is all I need to be happy.
2012 is shaping up to be another great 12 months. I already have so much to look forward to in the coming year.
• Alter Bridge, Steel Panther
• Attending Melbourne Vixens netball games
• Interviewing NWA World Heavyweight Champion Adam Pearce
• Getting tattooed by Arn Lyons at The Piercing Urge