2011 came and went, and some important events happened along the way…
- My best friend Thien returned to Vietnam for the first time ever to visit me. (December 27th, 2010—January 17th)
- My lovely grandmother visited me in Vietnam again, this time in Hanoi, for an entire month. (March 14th—April 13th)
- I visited Bangkok, Thailand, for the first time ever in order to spend time with friends. (May 9th—May 12th)
- I attended my first ever WordCamp San Francisco with Graph Paper Press (August 12th—August 14th)
- The trip to WordCamp changed my professional life. I left Graph Paper Press in September and began working as a trial employee for Automattic during August. I joined Automattic as a full-time employee in October, visiting Budapest (and Europe) for the first time ever.
- I moved into a new apartment and signed a 2-year lease on it, which means that unless things drastically change for me, I will be in Hanoi until 2014. (December 19th)
With all the travel I did this year I could have made the above list longer, but the aforementioned moments are what really stood out to me during 2011. I made a promise to myself a year ago to get things professionally in order, and I’ve done that. Working at Automattic has not been without its challenges, but the rewards of joining the company have been innumerable. My team lead and coworkers are brilliant people.
During Twenty Twelve I will focus heavily on my personal life and spend less time on the road. Outside of work-related travel I don’t see myself moving around a lot. I will stay in Hanoi, exercise, cultivate more friendships and strengthen my romantic relationship(s), and enjoy living in one of the most amazing cities in the world.
I’ve reached the point in my life where moving around or doing things just to say that I’ve done them is getting old. There’s a lot to be said about settling down, finding a girlfriend, getting married, having children, and doing the things you’re supposed to do when you grow up. I haven’t needed any of it because I’ve been so intensely head-down in work the last several years, but it’s time for me to pay closer attention to my personal needs.
I sound like an old man. I happily welcome early nights, hot tea, and a more relaxed lifestyle during the next year.