As 2021 comes to an end, and we head into 2022, I have been reflecting on some of the big things that have happened over the last 12 months. I think it is easy to paint the whole year as bad and just another year of a global pandemic, but it is important to acknowledge all the successes and triumphs which also occurred.
I know for myself, the winter semester (4 months) of my final year of my undergrad was lonely, stressful, and at most times miserable. Then I had the most underwhelming university graduation, which included just my name quickly passing on the screen (which I didn’t even watch because I was at work). My 2-month field school in Haida Gwaii got cancelled and rescheduled to 2022. And to top it all off, my summer of working in Tofino was really busy and included a lot of grumpy, unhappy, pandemic-tired visitors.
However, with all that being said, I also had some really big milestones that happened this year and I think it’s important to also acknowledge. Here are some of the biggest accomplishments and successes I had in 2021:
- GRADUATED UNIVERSITY! Yes, the second semester of online school SUCKED and I did NOT enjoy it, but I did it. I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts double major in Environmental Sustainability, and Sociology. Through my final year, I also completed an RBC Sustainability Leadership Certificate, and produced a pretty great Capstone project.
- Moved to Tofino!! I made the decision in early 2021 that I wanted to move to Tofino in the summer, and so I applied to EVERY single job posting in the area to make it happen. I wasn’t really fussed on what job I got, just as long as it meant I could be here – and I made that happen. I have been here for almost 7 months now, and I am so happy I moved here.
- Bought my first car! We got a 2009 Subaru Impreza hatchback with a whole lot of quirks. The car may be shared between Nathan and I, but this is the first time I have been responsible to maintain a vehicle, pay the insurance, and fix it when it breaks. Biggest thing I’ve taken away from this is that cars cost you money, they always break, and gas is suuuper expensive.
- Bought a van! Again, this is a vehicle that is shared between Nathan and I, but we had been talking about this for a while. We won’t be living in the van full time until Spring 2022, so until then it is a place we can have a little fire in the woodstove and watch a movie.
- Learned to Surf. I don’t surf nearly as much as I thought I would or as much as I’d want to, but I have surfed enough times now that I can stand up and ride a wave at least three or four times each time I go out. This is a HUGE improvement from when I started and was getting tossed around by the waves in the white wash.
- Traveled around Vancouver Island. It’s been since Winter 2020 that I have travelled internationally – which for me in the years before the pandemic, was quite a long time! So Nathan and I went on a bunch of mini adventures and travelled in/on Vancouver Island. Some of these adventures included: a 5-day sea-kayak trip around Vargas Island with friends, going to Bamfield, Port Renfrew, Salt Spring Island, Lasqueti Island, 5040 Peak and Cowichan Lake.
- Met so many great people. As the last two years have been rather isolating and lonely because of gathering restrictions and a global pandemic, this past 7 months of living in a huge staff accommodation and constantly meeting new people was much welcomed. I was happy to know that I hadn’t lost any of my social skills (lol)!! I have met some really great friends in the last year, and I am really grateful for that.
Sometimes I find it quite hard to believe that all of these things happened in 2021. This year has both dragged on and flown by, but I wouldn’t change any of the things that happened this year. I am excited to see what the rest of 2021 brings (in the last 2 or so weeks), and what the New Year will bring. Going into 2022, I definitely want to get better at goal setting, journaling, and creating more of a niche for this blog going forward.
See ya 2021!