I’m writing you today from our living room, A in my lap, T in the other room. It wasn’t what we’d planned for the week—today, I was meant to be on a train home from a family wedding, enjoying the passing scenery and settling deeply into a book.
Alas, sickness had other plans for us, sending us home early. One or both of us finally maybe actually caught COVID? We’re both doing okay, it’s unclear what we really have (tests, though consistently negative, are somewhat hit or miss these days), but laying low for now. I have wood downstairs for a workbench, and am putting this unexpected downtime to good use by puttering around with that (while taking good rest, in case this really is COVID).
This was perhaps the inevitable close to 2023, a year in which I spent more time out and about than I had for several years prior—including more international trips than any year previous (Porto, Washington DC, and Japan, whee!), working in-person (actually a nice element of this new gig), and a generally more relaxed approach to the pandemic. So it goes, I suppose. No regrets, though—it was a great year all around.
It was also a year in which I more often turned away from screens. This was intentional, and overall a good choice, I think! This mainly manifested in taking up woodworking as my main hobby, with data projects now a less regular pastime (though I still have a big one in the works—just waiting on an ATI return in the new year!).
I’m looking forward to continuing that through 2024, along with an even greater embrace of our new home. T got me / A / us some birdfeeders for the backyard, which we hope the scores of cardinals swooping through the nearby hedge will soon notice. I’m looking forward to building us some outdoor furniture come springtime, and spending more time moving easily between indoors and outdoors, sharing time and space with those I love.
I hope you’ve had as decent a year as you could muster—a great one, even, if that was in your cards. In January, we’ll be back to sharing links and so on, with, aspirationally, some more thoughts on my offscreen reading, too. All the best for the week—and year—ahead!