2018: The Review.

Life is a roller coaster with ups and downs. La vida es una montaña rusa, con las subidas y los bajones. 

I don’t think I could have a worse year than 2017. So much bad happened in my personal life, and I’m not even going to get into what was going on in the world. Being sent to a primary school in Asturias (that lead me to quitting the job), being fired from my summer job for defending my students, horrible living situations  that included me being taken advantage of financially and an attempted sexual assault and then the alcoholic insane flatmate… Creo que un año no puede ser peor que mi 2017. Había mucho mal en mi vida personal, y ni voy a empezar a hablar de lo que estaba pasando en el mundo. Me mandaron a una primaria en pueblo Asturias y dejé mi trabajo, me despidieron de mi trabajo temporal de verano porque defendí a mis alumnos, había situaciones de convevencia horribles, incluye un aprovechamiento de mi dinero, un intento de acoso sexual y después un compañero loco alcohólico….

How did I survive? ¿Cómo sobreviví?

The thing is I did. Pero sobreviví, sí. 

At the end of 2017, I somehow got my old job back and in València. I got out of the alcoholic insane flat in February. I saw Lady Gaga for the fourth time in Barcelona. I returned to London for the first time in 15 years, this time as a chaperone on a school trip. I made it to Cabo de Gata and Menorca. I visited Scandanavia for the first time, visiting Copenhagen in Denmark and Lund and Malmö in Sweden. I hiked to the top of Peñón de Ifach and the Ruta de 5000 escalones. I arrived to Santiago via the Caminos San Salvador and Primitivo. I also can say I stepped foot in all 50 provinces, finally having visited Zamora and OurenseAl finales de 2017, volví a mi trabajo de siempre y en València. Dejé el piso con el compañero loco alcohólico. Vi a Lady Gaga en directo por la 4ª vez en Barcelona. Volví a Londres por la primera vez desde hace 15 años, este vez como supervisor de un viaje del instituto. Fui a Cabo de Gata y Menorca. Visité Escandinavia por la primera vez cuando viajé a Copenhague en Dinamarca y Lund y Malmö en Suecia. Subí el Peñón de Ifac y hice la Ruta de 5000 escalones. Llegué a Santiago via los Caminos San Salvador y Primitivo. También puedo decir que he pisado las 50 provincias españolas porque por fin visité Zamora y Ourense

Those weren’t the only goals I achieved. I originally went to Spain for a year to improve my Spanish so I could do graduate work in Spanish. That year turned into 10. This year I was accepted into four of the six grad schools I applied to and settled on Illinois due to its reputation, location and funding package. I’m intensely busy (note the lack of updates during the semester), but I’m loving it. I also ended the semester with All A’s. No eran las únicas metas que logré cumplir este año. Fui a España con la intención de quedarme un año para mejorar mi castellano para después hacer un máster y doctorado en literatura hispánica. Me quedé 10. Este año, me aceptaron en el programa de máster de 4 universidades que solicité y decidí en Illinois por su reputación, ubicación y becas. Estoy más que liado (si fijas en la falta de entradas durante el semestre), pero me encanta. También saqué todos “A’s”, o equivalente a sobresalientes, 9s y 10s.

I’ve also been dating someone since September. I had all but given up on finding someone and meant to focus on grad school, but then I met a great guy. Tambíen llevo desde septiembre conociendo a un chico. Casi me rendí de encontrar a alguien y iba a enfocarme en el máster, pero después conocí a un tío genial. 

So while 2017 was the worst year ever, 2018 made a complete turn around. Even the Democrats took over the House! #Resist #PresidentaPelosiporfavor Entonces, aunque 2017 era el peor año de historia para mi, 2018 hizo una vuelta. Incluso los democratas ganaron la Cámara Baja (House of Representatives) #resist #presidentapelosiporfavor 

I hope 2019 continues with this upward swing. Espero que 2019 sea aún mejor.

I always do these memes, since 2003 (and the awards started in 1997) to commemorate the end of the year. Siempre hago estes memes, desde 2003 (y los premios empezaron en 1997) para marcar el final del año. 

The first, the places I slept in 2018/ los sitios donde dormí en 2018: Louisville, Kentucky; over the Atlantic (sobre el Atlántico), València, Barcelona, Tinença de Benifassà, London, Alicante, Almería, Cabo de Gata, Calpe, Copenhagen, Ciutadella (Menorca), Maó (Menorca), Zamora, León, La Robla, Poladura de Tercia, Campomanes, Mieres, Oviedo, Escamplero, Cornellana, Bodenaya, Campiello, Berducedo, Grandas de Salime, A Fonsagrada, Lugo, Friol, Sobrado dos Monxes, O Pedrouzo, Santiago de Compostela, Fisterra, A Coruña, Ourense, Urbana, Chicago

1. What did you do in 2018 that you’d never done before?:  Grad school.

2. Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?: Some, and I always have goals for the New Year. The goals will come soon.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?: A former co-worker and a cousin.

4. Did anyone close to you die?: A friend from uni.

5. What countries did you visit?: Spain, United States, Denmark, Sweden, “Republic de Catalunya” *eyeroll*, Germany via the Frankfurt airport)

6. What would you like to have in 2019 that you lacked in 2018?: A golden retriever and a Democrat president.

7. What date from 2018 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?: June 21 when I arrived to Santiago, first day of grad school, Sept. 3.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?: Starting grad school, arriving to Santiago, stepping foot in provinces #49 and 50.

9. What was your biggest failure?: Coming out, financial issues,.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Depression and anxiety, plus a weird stomach bug four times this summer.

11. What was the best thing you bought?: Plane/train/bus tickets 🙂

12. Whose behavior merited celebration? Everyone who resisted.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?: Donald Trump and his supporters. (keeping from 2015 *and* 2016. Scary!)  At this point, if you support him, you support bigotry and everything the US stands for. If you’re a conversative who is also appalled, though, I still respect you even if I disagree with you. I do not respect Trump and his minions. Keeping from 2015, 2016 and 2017. I will also add Pablo Casado, Albert Rivera, Mariano Rajoy, and all of VOX and their supporters.

14. Where did most of your money go?: Travel, café con leche, books (kept from 2015 and 2016) (and 2017).

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?: Camino, Grad school, new Mariah and Gaga albums.

16. What song will always remind you of 2018?: Shallow by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? Happier
ii. thinner or fatter? About the same
iii. richer or poorer? If you want to know how badly I was paid in Spain, I make double as a grad student TA.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?: Writing, travelling.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Procrastinating, being afraid to be who I am, worrying.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?: I spent it with my mom in the States.

21. How will you be spending New Years? Eating grapes at 6 PM Eastern Standard Time, which is midnight in most of the Iberian peninsula

22. Did you fall in love in 2018?: Infatuation. Too soon still.

24. What was your favorite TV program?:Jane the Virgin, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Merlí.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?: I’ve lost a lot of respect for a lot of people.

26. What was the best book you read?: Good question! The Rooster Bar by John Grisham, Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarity, Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman,

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?: Janelle Monáe, Years & Years, Robyn, George Ezra

28. What did you want and get?: Grad school and I’m seeing someone.

29. What did you want and not get?: A golden retriever.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?: A Star Is Born, Love, Simon and Perfectos desconocidos.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?: 37, worked on final papers, had last class of semester, went to el chico’s office Christmas pizza party.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?:  Robert Mueller arresting certain people.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2017?: Preppy-casual

34. What kept you sane?: Jordi, my iPod, the Camino, hiking, books.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?: David Villa, Mario Casas, Justin Baldoni (Rafa on Jane the Virgin)

36. What political issue stirred you the most?: Anyone who has been offended by Donald Trump, please raise your hand. I see everyone raising their hands. Enough said. (Kept from 2016 and 2017).

37. Who did you miss?: Fallon Fey, my golden retriever, and Spain.

38. Who was the best new person you met?: Jon.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2018: Resist and persist.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:

In all the good times I find myself
Longing for change
And in the bad times I fear myself
I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in
I’ll never meet the ground
Crash through the surface, where they can’t hurt us
We’re far from the shallow now
Setmeravelles’ Brightside Awards for 2018:
Best Artist: Mariah Carey
Entertainer of the Year: Lady Gaga
Best Movie: A Star Is Born
Best Actor: Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born
Best Actress: Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born
Best Supporting Actor: Dani Roviera, Tai Mai: Rumbo a Vietnam
Best Supporting Actress: Nicole Kidman, Boy Erased
Best Director: Álex de la Iglesia, Perfectos desconocidos

Best TV Series, Comedy: Benvinguts a la Familia
Best TV Series, Drama: Jane the Virgin
Best Retro TV Series: Angel
Best TV Actor: Justin Baldoni (Rafael Solano), Jane the Virgin
Felicity Huffman Award for Best TV Actress: Gillian Anderson (Special Agent Dana Scully), The X-Files
Best Supporting Actor: Jaime Camil (Rogelio de la Vega), Jane the Virgin
Best Supporting Actress: Frances Conroy (Myrtle Snow), American Horror Story Apocalpyse
Best Special Guest Star: Connie Britton (Vivian), American Horror Story Apocalypse
Worst Acting: Roseanne Barr, Roseanne

Best Discovered Artist: Janelle Moráe
Best Male Artist: Eli Lieb
Best Female Artist: Mariah Carey
Best Group: The Killers
Best Video: Beautiful Trauma by P!nk
Worst Artist (tie) Beyonce, The Carters
Best Single: Shallow by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper
Best Song (tie): Shallow by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, Sincerly Yours by Kylie Minogue, Rut by The Killers
Album of the Year: Caution by Mariah Carey

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