Reflecting on a kinder 2012 and wishes for a happy 2013!

by Forager on January 1, 2013

Happy New Year! Wherever you are in the world, I hope you’re celebrating in style!

We’re celebrating down the south coast of NSW in Tuross Heads with family, friends and plenty of good food and wine; fishing, foraging, sun and sand. There have been feasts galore and on new year’s eve last night, between mouthfuls of briny fresh local oysters and foraged black mussels, we reflected on the year that was 2012 and I remembered having written a post on new year’s day last year reflecting on 2011. I’d mentioned then in that post that the highlights of 2011 for us was the Co-pilot and me getting engaged in New York and having our Chinese tea ceremony. Lowlights were my lung collapse episode and subsequent hospitalisation and now, after a year’s mourning to heal wounds I can admit that my father passed away at the end of 2011 after a long and protracted battle with cancer. It was a very difficult time for me this same time last year with so so much grief and raw emotion to contend with and any mention of him, or well meaning attempts to ask of my well being would rip open wounds and start a fresh cascade of tears. So as a not expressively emotional person, I dealt with it the only way I knew how: very quietly. I wished then for a better 2012 and now upon reflection on the first day of 2013, I can safely say, it’s definitely been a much better year!

For a start, the Co-pilot and I got married in February with close family and friends around us indulging in delicious food – and we now know our unique wedding has inspired others to replicate it in its entirety(!); we had 2 honeymoons – the first, a teaser in Thailand and more recently an entire month away travelling through London, France and Spain; and finally just this month, after two years of searching, we closed out 2012 by finally buying a house! I’ve found that buying a house has been far more sobering and transformative than marriage. I recall turning to the Co-pilot, after the euphoria of the auction had died down and the dawning realisation that we’d bought a house settled in, and saying “I feel like an adult now”. Marriage made me feel young and joyous and in love. Buying a house and now, for the first time being in debt has been more of an aging process. So yes, it’s been a pretty big year for us in major life events.

The food fair that doubled as our wedding

The food fair that doubled as our wedding

Thai honeymoon sessions Koh Tao

Thai honeymoon sessions

A brief 48 hour stopover in London

A brief 48 hour stopover in London

A sojourn in Paris

A sojourn in Paris

Feasting and foraging in the south of France

Feasting and foraging in the south of France

Gorging on tapas in San Sebastian

Gorging on tapas in San Sebastian

Exploring the streets of Barcelona

Lazing on the beach and exploring the streets of Barcelona

So, to round out the year of holidays, as mentioned earlier we’re currently spending our holiday break in Tuross Heads and we still have a glorious week ahead of us before we need to return to work. I’ve exulted in the luxury of doing not much but cooking and eating with our friend and family contingent down here, fishing on some days and poking around the seashore and exploring rockpools on others. We’ve foraged oysters and mussels; samphire and pigface off the rocky shoreline, but my favourite find so far is this delightful creature – a blue nudibranch (Glaucus atlanticus), a type of sea slug that floats on the ocean preying on nasty blue bottles. It was small, only about 3cm in length and was waving its arms around languidly in the most mesmerising fashion. In retrospect I’m glad I resisted the urge to touch it with my bare hands as, despite being so delicate and fragile in appearance, it stores the toxin from the blue bottles it preys on in its finger like fronds and can deliver a wallop nastier than blue bottles! I’m fascinated by them now and find myself scanning the sand and rockpools for more specimens.

blue nudibranch, blue dragon, sea slug

A blue nudibranch we spotted washed up in a rock pool

And last night we kicked off 2013 with fireworks at the local country club, with cheap booze, bleating bad music, heaving sweaty big bodies and far too much unsightly drunken flesh. To cap it off a seriously bloody brawl between the locals (men and women alike) that started next to us and I mean right next to us. We had to quickly scoot out of the way to avoid being collateral damage! So we’ve had a stylish start to the new year already – surely it can only get better from here!

But seriously, I’m very much looking forward to the coming year – we’ll be settling into our new house at the end of this month and I can’t wait to go shopping for furnishings! We’ve been making do with a small apartment and a coffee table cum dining table for years! So we’ll finally have a dining table and have guests over – imagine that!

Thank goodness that 2012 was kinder to us than 2011 and I sincerely hope it was the same for you. Wherever you are, wishing you a fantastic, healthy, happy 2013 with of course, plenty of good food, good wine and interesting travels!

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Tina@foodboozeshoes January 1, 2013 at 6:50 pm

I sure hope 2013 is bigger and better for us all. Thanks as always for your heartfelt sharing and I hope this year is nothing but joy for you. Congrats on the house!
Tina@foodboozeshoes recently posted..The year that was, 2012My Profile

2 Jacq January 1, 2013 at 9:52 pm

Happy new year Trina! I hope 2013 brings you lots of joy and happiness as you settle into your new home
Jacq recently posted..2012 RoundupMy Profile

3 Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul January 1, 2013 at 10:02 pm

All the best for 2013 Trina! I’m happy to hear that you’re in a better place now. Thank you for being a great wine buddy last month too. Oh! and you’re start to this year sounds “interesting”…Cheers!

4 Melleemoo January 2, 2013 at 10:29 am

I have had one of those up and down years too, however the highlight was getting engaged while we were in Germany.

We also just purchased a house, settlement in a few weeks, and a week after that we get married.

Exciting times, and I definetly agree that the house buying is the grown up part!!!!

5 Gaby January 2, 2013 at 11:46 am

What a great year for you, happy to hear all your travels and projects have gone well. All the best in 2013 and stay away from dodgy pubs.
Gaby recently posted..Christmas eats and Happy New YearMy Profile

6 Nic@diningwithastud January 2, 2013 at 4:03 pm

Happy New Year Trina :D I hope it’s everything you wish for and more!
Nic@diningwithastud recently posted..2013! The year ahead…My Profile

7 THE GOOK January 2, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Life unravels itself in the oddest ways. I’m glad to close the door on 2012, like yourself and start the rollercoaster ride that will be 2013. I hope that this year brings you happiness and lots of laughter, along with some delicious food. Congrats on the new home, it’s nice to own a little piece of land, makes you feel like your feet are firm on the ground and ready to take on the world.

8 The Food Sage January 3, 2013 at 2:43 pm

A beautiful post. And gorgeous photography. May you have a lovely 2013, Trina. All the best.
The Food Sage recently posted..Notes from the inner sanctum of Momofuku SeioboMy Profile

9 Forager January 3, 2013 at 3:25 pm

Hey Tina – Thanks and the same to you! We can’t wait to move in to our new digs – even looking at broing things like whitegoods is exciting right now

Hey Jacq – Thanks and I wish the same for you and your family too!

Hey Peter – It was a pleasure being your wine buddy at the conference and I hope we catch up some time soon. Wishing you a brilliant 2013!

Hey Mellemoo – I hope 2013 is an even better year for you too – especially with so many ‘grown up’ things going on. I wish you the very best for a smooth settlement and the absolutely perfect day for your wedding! Congratulations :)

Hey Gaby – Thanks Gaby and the same to you! Wise advice re dodgy pubs! I’m glad we got out of there in the nick of time. I only had half a glass of someone’s beer poured down my back, but given the alternative of being beaten up, I count myself lucky!

Hey Nic – Thank you and a very happy new year to you too!

Hey Gook – Thank you so much – very nice words and yes, we’re very much looking forward to our little piece of land. Wishing you an awesome 2013 and a wonderful day for your upcoming wedding too!

Hey Food Sage – And the same to you too Rachel – may 2013 bring you laughter, happiness and good food!

10 OohLookBel January 3, 2013 at 6:23 pm

Fabulous photos to commemorate 2012 (after such a sad start). I love your posts and hope to see many more this year – with maybe some new home photos, please?
OohLookBel recently posted..Ooh, Look… Best of 2012 and Cat of the YearMy Profile

11 Forager January 3, 2013 at 7:03 pm

Hey Bel – Oh I sincerely hope so too! Can’t wait to move in!

12 Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella January 3, 2013 at 9:39 pm

You’ve had such a big two years! :O The photos of your honeymoon(s) are sublime and I hope that 2013 is a fabulous year for you!
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella recently posted..Mexican Wedding CookiesMy Profile

13 Trisha January 4, 2013 at 10:41 pm

We’ve almost had the same year! Wedding & a short stint at the hospital. Here’s to health, love & happiness in 2013!
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14 Adrian (Food Rehab) January 6, 2013 at 10:36 pm

Aw, hello stranger! Thanks for the congrats by the way, really appreciate it.
You have had a very eventful 2 years – there were the ups and the downs but that stormy weather, I’m really happy to see how you’ve made it through the rain, the success you have achieved and for getting hitched! WOOOOP!

I hope 2013 brings about more joy!
Adrian (Food Rehab) recently posted..Gourmand World Cookbook Award for Best Asian Cuisine Book + A $100 Travel GIVEAWAYMy Profile

15 maria May 15, 2013 at 6:40 pm

Hi, lovely pictures! would you mind if I use “going on tapas in San Sebastian” for a post that I wrote about San Sebastian a couple of days ago?? I will link it back to this page. Is it ok??

A part from that, congrats, your website looks great and I enjoy reading your posts.

Cheers!
maria recently posted..Things to do in San Sebastian on a 3-4 days tripMy Profile

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