VIEWS AND OPINION

Was 2016 a shit year for you too?

Despite what some people think, I’m not a really negative person – more realistic. The past few years have been successful for me – sometimes full, busy or hard work, but overall successful. But I know I’m not alone in saying that 2016 has not been my favourite year ever, and it often felt simply exhausting. Often it was downright shitty.

In Hunza Valley in May 2016 I came across a drink called "Shat". I should've known then.

In Hunza Valley in May 2016 I came across a drink called “Shat”. I should’ve known then.

Yeah there were highlights; my trip to Europe, my trips to Sindh and Northern Pakistan (stay tuned for more about these), the spiritual wonder of spending Ramadan and Muharram at home in Lahore, the launch of my new book Recipes for Ramadan, recent Christmas festivities.

A Muharram procession in the Walled City of Lahore

A Muharram procession in the Walled City of Lahore

And man, there were some lowlights. Getting my phone stolen in a crowd in Lahore; repeatedly falling sick; a couple of friends and family members going through some really shitty personal circumstances; scraping the bottom of my savings barrel – something I’m not particularly proud of; my experience with the Sukkur police; and just generally overburdening myself with work and stress in an unhealthy way. None of them earth-shattering (first world problems, if you may), but shitty enough to be a constant pain in the ass, and leaving me feeling like I just couldn’t catch a break.

Me waiting at Rohri Station with a police guard - for my protection, of course.

Me waiting at Rohri Station with a police guard – for my protection, of course.

As mentioned in the Buzzfeed article I linked above, 2016 seems to have been a shitty year for the world, too. Violence and war (maybe we’re just more aware of it, thanks to the omnipresent media), famous deaths (Abdul Sattar Edhi, David Bowie, Prince, Muhammad Ali, Amjad Sabri, Christina Grimmie, Qandeel Baloch, Junaid Jamshed, George Michael), global politics (Brexit, Donald Trump), plane crashes and even a particularly horrible epidemic ahead of the Rio Olympics.

A hospital in Aleppo (Image: Scott Bobb, Voice of America, Wikimedia Commons)

A hospital in Aleppo (Image: Scott Bobb, Voice of America, Wikimedia Commons)

I don’t imagine that simply the change from 31st December 2016 to 1st January 2017 will magically stop the ups and downs of a normal person’s life, but the new year does represent a convenient bookend with which one can create (or imagine) closure. I don’t normally get to the end of the year and say that I’m happy for it to be over – but I’ll be really happy to close the chapter on 2016.

Above us only sky... one of the last sunsets of 2016, in Melbourne

Above us only sky… one of the last sunsets of 2016, in Melbourne

This Saturday, to welcome 2017 I’ll be posting my annual preview of the new year – so stay tuned!

What was 2016 like for you? Comment below!

Meet Tim Blight


Writer, traveller, amateur photographer, teacher. Based in Melbourne and Lahore.

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  • Barbara December 27, 2016, 3:11 pm

    2016 was a “big shit” year for us, but finished on a very happy note in Melbourne – 2017 is going to be a brilliant year for us and families 😊

    Reply
    • Tim Blight December 31, 2016, 9:24 am

      That’s right – 2017, bring it on!

      Reply
  • veena January 3, 2017, 10:42 am

    I’m with you on 2016 being kind of an overall crappy year, but I too have high hopes for better things in 2017. I hope you had a nice New Year celebration, and I am sending you lots of good vibes for a great year! Hugs from Memphis xxx

    Reply
    • Tim Blight January 3, 2017, 4:44 pm

      Straight back at you, Veena! Thanks for reading, and happy new year! 😀

      Reply
  • Agness Walewinder January 4, 2017, 2:20 pm

    2016 was definitely a year of experiments for me. There were good moments and bad ones as well so I can feel you, mate. However, don’t look back Tim and don’t think too much of bad things that happened last year. Start this New Year with a positive mindset and make it epic and unforgettable! Wishing you a good health, success and a lot of memorable moments and travel adventures in 2017!

    Reply
    • Tim Blight January 5, 2017, 9:15 pm

      That’s right – positivity going into the new year! Lets all have an awesome year!! Thanks, Agness 🙂

      Reply