2014 came and went, and some important events happened along the way…
- I left San Francisco and Automattic, and returned to Hanoi.
- I wrote about my last ten years with Vietnam.
- I organized with Tuấn Anh the first ever WordCamp in Vietnam.
- I wrote and released Subtitles. I continue to develop and improve it.
- I became the first external committer to Underscores.
- WordSesh 3 just passed and I had the pleasure of doing a theme round table with a bunch of fantastic people.
- During September I traveled to Bangkok and attended a great WordPress meetup.
Most of that sounds like work, but the year didn’t feel like work. When I left Automattic in February I took some time off to hit the reset button and think about what it is that I want from life. Leaving a comfortable job was probably the most difficult thing I’ve had to do in the last several years and it hurt a lot, but I’m in a much better place now than where I was a year ago. I’m calmer, more relaxed, less sick, and happier.
I’ve met someone also. I spend all of my free time with her and my life has become six hours of work per day, eight hours of sleep per day, and ten hours of finding life per day. That means drinks with friends, cooking at home and exploring Hanoi with my girlfriend, watching movies and listening to music, and doing things that makes life feel enjoyable.
There wasn’t much travel this year and that’s okay. I needed to stay still for a while and to think. I needed to get back to the basics and rediscover my smile. Because I wasn’t on planes the entire year I also wasn’t sick, which was a big bonus. I have no idea what will happen next year in terms of professional changes. I have a hunch or two and some exciting news coming soon, but everything’s in flux right now and that works for me.
Next year I will move into a new apartment (bigger and cheaper) and look into building more of a daily life here in Hanoi. This feels more like home than it ever has to me and I want to be nowhere else but here. There will be more travel, to be sure, but I’m not looking to escape or run away from Hanoi. I love it here. I’ve found peace here.
Life is so very short and I’m doing everything I possibly can to live it. Sometimes the decisions I make seem random or weird, but they all come from my fear that time is running out. It’s priceless, time, and next year I imagine that I’ll be even more vigilant about protecting it and honoring it.