1. Canine Distemper
Had my heart broken in a new way first thing in January when I lost a rescue dog (Cider) to distemper despite everything. Blondie had distemper the last time I saw him; presumed dead. Daisy ran away from the distemper ward at the shelter and was seen alive in Kota Sentosa a few weeks later. Current status unknown. There’s been success stories in rescue through the year but these are the ones that will always make my heart ache.

2. An Introvert in Bali
Went on my first solo trip (KL doesn’t count). I spent a week in Ubud, Bali, soaking in the culture, arts, sights and pleasure of my own company.  Immediately before that, I attended the wedding of an old friend in Penang.

3. Returned to my creative roots
Completed 3 creative projects comprising of:

Current project – The Black Dogs of December (novel)

4. Phantom of the Opera
Went to see the most defining musical of all musicals. Turned out to be the only musical I saw this year. Still wish I grew up in an era where a career in musical theatre was not stuff of fantasies.

5. Got on stage
Played a random cat in Summer Cats, with a couple of solo singing lines. Performed spoken word poetry at Lov Gallery‘s Strong Words. Part of a Christmas flash mob with Studio 23.

6. ‘Animals and the City’ international symposium
Attended my first conference. Voluntarily. Actually understood the subject matter and realise that I still a lot to learn. Met some pretty prominent figures in the veterinary and animal welfare field in the region.

7. Went to the dentist
This ranks as a pretty big milestone. Went in to because of a dead tooth. Ended up getting a root canal, and fillings after that. Didn’t cry. Can use full set of teeth now.

8. Bought a folding bicycle
Rode the folding bicycle around the city with one of my closest friends. Love it. Signing up for Let’s Share The Road 2014.

9. Grew out my hair
Yeah. The First Lady of Go Bald went long. Acquaintances don’t recognise me. And since my hair decided to grow out curly, sometimes I don’t recognise myself either. It’s cool though, especially when people keep complimenting me on the hair, asking where I got it done.

10. Did a lot of soul searching
Which comes naturally from embracing my introvert self, reminding myself that I am the average of the five people I spend the most time with, being unapologetic about my growing list of quirks, and learning to let go of destructive relationships and circumstances beyond my control.

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