- Expectation: Have a massive clearout, paying particular attention to all the extra tat I acquired during my uni years (no, seriously, it will happen this year). Reality: Keep telling myself that every year.
- Expectation: Meet up with *insert friend*. Reality: Have lengthy text conversation with them about the days when one of us is free, but the other isn’t.
- Expectation: Get through reading list. Reality: Add more to said list than I cross off.
- Expectation: Take up singing lessons again to overcome fear of singing on my own. Reality: Wait until I’m alone in the house. Listen to Memory or The Sound of Music on my iPod. Mumble along too quietly to hear myself properly.
- Expectation: Improve at Chinese. Reality: Remind myself again of the difference between the words for “horse” and “mother”. Tell myself that at least I am far from meeting strangers’ assumptions about my mother tongue.
- Expectation: Get back into art. Reality: colour in a single object in one of my ten or so adult colouring books. Feel suitably accomplished.
- Expectation: Try to practise my violin more often. Reality: Practise once. Make notes on how to improve next time. Feel suitably accomplished. Forget about notes. Repeat process every month or two.
- Expectation: Work on my writing. Reality: make minor adjustments to the book plans I made last year. Convince myself that my life’s ambition of becoming an author is just around the corner. Feel suitably accomplished.
I think my heart sank a little bit when I scrutinised my previous journals for summer to-do lists, only to realise that they were nearly the same from year to year. But hey, this summer has already given me more than my share of fun and adventure, namely:
- Visiting Jennie, and taking a train that had to stop and go back the other way. Getting off in the middle of nowhere and being told that replacement taxis would be arriving shortly. Having to be rescued by Jennie and Jan when the replacement taxi drivers had no memory of being booked.
- Missing the train home and waiting an hour for the next one.
- Taking my semi-Asian skin for granted, and accidentally giving it sunburn.
- Finding out I have astigmatism as well as short sight.
- Nearly being defeated by the Sainsbury’s self checkout, with the intervention of Sainsbury’s staff who were evidently too good to let me pay for the same item twice.
All riveting stuff. And now, after a draining few weeks, I find myself more in need of a holiday that I have felt in a long time. So until next time, happy summer everyone! Think you can cross off a summer list better than me?