To all the haters that always say every year, "This year sucked, next one has to be better," I have to disagree. Even a traditionally horrible experience in hindsight, is at the very least interesting, if not totally amazing after the fact. I personally thought 2013 was the best year ever, and life is only getting better all the time.
Top moments of the year, in no specific order:
Getting caught in a torrential downpour in Chicago. There were people streaming down the streets. At the time, it felt like the worst. But if you watch the video, we're all smiling hard.
A cheap but effective high: casually wandering Harry Potter World during my birthday, and being escorted to the front of the line for every ride. Because birthday! I haven’t celebrated very hard in years, so being rewarded for being born was so nice! It's an unexpected but always welcome surprise to have strangers try to make your day.
Watching my sister transform into a beautiful bride, supernaturally calm and unfettered leading up to her special day. Favorite moment, while getting ready: "Can you go steal me some bacon?" She calmly eats several pieces of thick-sliced maple-flavored bacon in her perfect hair and makeup, somehow not mussing either or her dress.
Finding myself at a happy hour with coworkers I’d never spent time with outside of the office before. Immediately becoming great friends, filling my workdays and social calendar with the most brilliant SnapChats, non-sequitous IMs, and obscure games.
Seeing Belle & Sebastian again after 7 years, standing in a crush of people against the barricade, in a light drizzle, alone, swooning.
Staying at the office until midnight, eating a burrito and drinking beers. While talking to my long-distance crush via headset. While wrapping every piece of furniture in my favorite EVP’s office with tin foil. Favorite favorite: making a giant crane out of foil as the pièce de résistance.
Going to the arcade with a new friend, and running around like hyperactive children. It was just like being on a first date, where we told our friends afterward, "I had the most amazing time! I want to see him again." That night sealed it: he’s now my work husband and greatest confidant.
Wandering down the rabbit hole, staying out till all hours. Following the adventure storyline to the end of each night has led to secret after-hours bars, tours of beautiful homes, all the chicken sausage I could ever consume, Bagel Bites and Wii tournaments in vacant apartments, dogs petted and cats held, in-depth conversations with Uber drivers about the intricacies of the service, and often waking up with my hair in a tangle.
Zooming down the street I live on, super fast on my bike, because all the streets were closed. Feeling confident enough to ride through parts of town I’d never attempted before. Eventually landing on a patio and eating endless pizza and drinking beers with an unlikely, but incredible grouping of my favorite people.
Walking down 18th St in San Francisco with my younger sister, immediately following a successful half marathon run, eating artisanal ice cream and carrying a tres leches cake she had special ordered for my birthday.
Approached a complete stranger at the best party at SXSW. We danced, we raised our eyebrows at each other when we spotted a girl who had literally lost her shirt, we climbed on stage and danced some more. I never expected to see him again, it was a perfect night. Now we talk every single day.
Although I’d been running for several months, with a few races peppered throughout the year, I hit my first runner’s high in September. It coincided with the period of time I was talking to someone new for the first time since being single. I felt like I was floating.
WORST TURNED BEST:
Following a dumbfounding breakup from my then-boyfriend of nearly five years: being swallowed up not by infinite sadness, but engulfed completely by the nuances of all my previously neglected friendships. This year I grew closer than ever to my best friends, reconnected with the most treasured people in my life, and charmed many new ones.
May 2014 bring just as many memories, just as much magic, even more moments to celebrate.