Xin nian kuai le!*

As the (western, I’ve got used to distinguishing this week) New Year approaches, it seems the thing to do to look back over a pretty crazy year which has seen me living in 3 different countries.

Bad things about 2009:

  • By far and away the worst aspect of this year was watching Mr B’s mounting frustration at his Beijing posting. Our decision to leave early was not taken lightly but, under the circumstances, waiting it out would have been fruitless.
  • An all-too-brief stay in Mumbai after returning from 6 months of the most hard-core work experience of my life in Jakarta. We miss the tropical weather, M & his family and the craziness of life in India.

Good things about 2009:

  • The arrival of my beautiful niece and god-daughter A. And the arrival of lots and lots of gorgeous babies to friends. Before we reach next mid-summer, we know of 6 new arrivals to come – a bumper crop.
  • New friends – so many, and what a difference they make. Friends we made in Mumbai and especially those in Beijing have made us feel at home and given us lots of laughs and memories. In many ways, I feel happier in Beijing than in Mumbai – there is so much going on here. It is true that for expat wives finding friends who you can trust and share problems with is invaluable.
  • Getting an insight into arguably the most important country of this century. And having a chance to get to know some of the language, tortuous as it has been.

I’m not sure I’ve improved as a wife this year. Does it count that I tried? I’ve certainly cooked more and for a few months of the year have even earned my keep!

2010 brings another new posting – this time to Brussels in mid-January. Mr B & I met in Brussels. We have a lot of good friends still living there, we know enough French to muddle through, and we pretty much know how things work. Plus I’ll be able to get back to work, in theory. It should all be good, right?

2009 has been a hectic but fascinating year.

Wishing everyone a happy 2010! Thanks for reading.

* Happy new year!

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