I've just been thinking back over the past twelve months, and I've realized it's amazing how much can happen in such a short time span. This time last year, I was a brand-new high school graduate with now a clue as to what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I was just getting ready to start my first full-time job and was actually - imagine this - excited about it, I had plans to go and study theater in Australia, and I was really excited to see how it would all work out.
Well, I haven't been disappointed, that's for certain; this past year has been one little adventure after another. Having said that, almost nothing that's happened since last June was planned in any way, or even suspected. But I suppose that just makes it all the more exciting. Last June I had not an inkling that in a years' time I would be a) working towards a career in journalism and preparing myself for an internship with the Economist, b) renting out my own apartment and living more or less entirely independently, or c) have gone through several relationship fiascos, one major best friend blunder, one slightly less than agreeable flatmate and a few hundred online stalkers (okay, I might be exaggerating a small bit, but you understand).
So yes, I think it's safe to say that this year has been full of surprises, both pleasant and... otherwise. But it just makes you realize how quickly life can pass us by, doesn't it? One day you're a student studying for your IB exams and thinking they're the most intellectually difficult and challenging years of your life; the next, you're working dawn until dusk six days a week to support yourself, you've forgotten the meaning of the term "social life" altogether and you're wondering what on earth you had to complain about all through your secondary education.
Some days I look back and wonder how it's possible that I've lived in Hong Kong for almost ten years already. A decade! Yes, I definetely have the friendships to show for it; but there are still people that I'm just now getting to know, even though they've been there all along. Isn't that terrible? That a person can go nine and a half years and never get to know someone who's been there practically every single day of it? So occasionally I have to ask: How long are we going to sit here and let life just slide quietly by? How many opportunites are we going to let slip through our fingers like sand, and how much more time are we going to spend being thinkers, rather than do-ers?
The way I see it, young as we undoubtedly are, there's so much to see and do in the world that we shouldn't be wasting a second doing anything less than working towards experiencing as much of it as we possibly can. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go and see what I can do about discovering a new life-form. Well, you only live once, right?