Year plus plus

Today is the last working day in this year, so it’s time to say goodbye to year 2010. Ride has been bumpy and tough. Really tough. Year 2010 has been the most difficult in my life. It’s also been one of the best. Not the first half, but the second.

During the first six months I was constantly thinking what I want to do with my life. Family and work were both something I wasn’t happy with. This of course lead to crisis, where every wall was falling at the same time. Then the roof came and collapsed, leaving me to struggle my way through the rubble. Rise up. Breath again. Be free.

I quit my job. I started in new one. Divorced and moved on my own after almost ten years. Buried my dearest grandparents. All this happened too soon, too quick. But I survived and got stronger.

Life goes on and smiles again. Thanks to great friends, who have given me their strong support and hope. You know who you are. With your help it was a lot easier to travel through sorrow and pain. I’ve been happier and everything looks better now. I believe next year will be good. Really good.

What else happened?

I got my bachelor’s degree finished. There is still lots of work to do until my studies are complete. Maybe in 2012 I’ll have two master’s degrees. That’s insane.

I have seen numerous good gigs from great bands. Played couple of good ones myself and really started playing drums again regularly.

I have the best workmates ever. I feel we have a good spirit. Let’s keep it that way.

I started saving money. I want to travel. Next trip will be to Ireland and Northern Ireland in May. Renting a car. Driving around. Scary, if you know what Irish traffic is like. And they drive on the wrong side of the road! Some day I want to see New York. Not maybe next year, but it’ll be there waiting for me.

And sports? I have really enjoyed sports again. Yesterday I played some ice hockey. I haven’t been skating much in years, but it went pretty well. I’m considering buying a pair of skates and a hockey stick. Indoor cycling while watching TV series is a regular activity now. At least once a week. In January I will continue practicing my martial arts skills in wushu kung fu. I’ve lost about 13 kg of weight in 8 months, which is nice. I still have lots of extra to lose, but I try not to stress about it.

Let’s see what next year brings. I’m ready and happy with my life.

Farewell to Bristol

Bristol screen

Finnish movie theater company Finnkino is closing down the legendary Bristol in Aikatalo. To celebrate the long history, classic movies are played during the weekend. Yesterday evening I went to see The Good, The Bad & The Ugly with Niklas and Pekka. This again reminded me how I really should see classic movies more often.

The National Audiovisual Archive plays many classics in Cinema Orion, from Totoro to Stalker. Prices are affordable, so it’s not a big deal to see great movies on screen. I’ve only seen one movie there, Peeping Tom, but I certainly recommend going there. Big screen will always beat your laptop screen.

I survived the Christmas party

In Finland, having a company Christmas party often means that it is your last day on this planet and you have to party like you would never again have a chance to do so.

Some people drink themselves under the table, some people just want to have fun, while some others go home and whine how there is absolutely no sense to go out because it’s a cold winter, there’s snowing and you will probably get punched in the nose, while queueing for taxi.

For me the Christmas party means having fun with good friends. This time our company band was entertaining people with classic rock and punk songs. I’m the drummer of the band and I just love being on the stage, seeing all the people go wild when we play. This gig was very difficult, because the only thing I could hear was the lead guitar. Comments were mostly positive, so I don’t think we were bad. We were at least good enough. And next time we will be even better.

Marrow of the Spirit has arrived

There was a long waited surprise waiting for me when I got back home from work. The brand new Agalloch album Marrow of the Spirit had finally arrived.

I don’t really buy that much cds or vinyls anymore, but usually I try to spend my money in music that isn’t just plastic hits made for radio and masses to consume. I want to support bands and artists who write great music and love what they do and want to share their work with the whole world without nagging how internet piracy and Spotify are taking all their money.

This album is a limited black edition and numbered 525/2000. I hope it will someday be a valuable piece of music. Not because it will probably be worth more money after couple of years, but because it’s great stuff.