It is mildly terrifying to realise that today I have been blogging on DA for three years. It is both a wonderful and a terrible thing, with the click of a button, to be able to look back to see what has come between and, having clicked on all three of the 28th of January blogs, it would seem that today is the traditional time for a look back in DA land. And I wouldn't want to break a tradition.
In the last year I've video blogged about queuing for five hours waiting for the Harry Potter launch, seen The Holloways three times and, more impressively, McFly five times, watched more breath-taking theatre than I have ever done before, learnt how to save someone's life, discovered I'm actually a puppet in a West End musical, camped (not by the smelly toilets) at a festival, not sailed in a boat at Whitby, become obsessed with the V&A, still not managed to win a penny at Bingo, fallen in love with Ian McEwan's writing (whilst still wanting Mister Pip to win the Booker), gotten relationship advice from Libby Purves, learnt enough about opera to be able to blag my way through a conversation, bought a pair of Bridget Jones pants, had bucks fizz for breakfast in Chichester, chased Pretty Sloane Boys down the Kings Road, been interviewed by both The Globe and The Royal Court (though, obviously, without being offered either job), written 50,000 words of a novel in less than a month, attended a Brideshead Revisited picnic, run across a deserted Blackpool beach, added Sela (or, as someone christened it, Sailor) to my list of favourite places, had Sunday lunch at the Bedford (twice), worn flashing bunny ears in a theatre, survived being on tour with a theatre company, bought a maxi flowered summer dress that can only be considered as being very successful, liberated a napkin from The Ivy, sung 'She's Electric' in a kitchen with some utterly brilliant people, received two marriage proposals and quite probably drunk more than I should have.
I made a bit of a mess of a couple of things (one of which I am still a little embarrassed about), wore my heart on my sleeve a little too much and cried because of three different people (only one of whom shouted), not to mention at at least half of the third series of Doctor Who. I wasn't always around as much as I probably should have been which, whilst partly due to how hard I've worked at various points this year, was also about how equally hard I was socialising. I forgave someone far too easily for things that probably shouldn't have been forgiven (though I know I would forgive them all over again if it came down to it). I listened to very good advice but I didn't always take it. I surprised myself at just how selfish I could be. And though I know that I did something morally questionable this year I didn't (and still don't) feel guilty about it. And, if I am honest, cannot say I won't do it again.
Maybe, amongst it all, as things got blurred, I gained a few extra bruises and I had to do some adjusting of perspectives, I grew up a little this year. Though, obviously, not so much that I couldn't understand the sheer joy of wearing a Stargirl t-shirt at a McFly gig whilst proclaiming that I hearted Harry. Because I never want to grow up enough to miss out on that.
If the last year has had some extremes (often of my own making) then I suspect the next year on DA will be one more about changes. If things go to plan then this will be my last season at the WYP (for now at least) as, providing someone wants to offer me a place, I'm intending to go back to University in the Autumn to do an MA in playwriting. It also means moving out of Leeds, which should, at least, placate Director Boy as I suspect he is probably getting tired of asking me when I'm moving to London. There are other things I'm also excited about, not least seeing David Tennant in Hamlet (twice!), the combination of John Barrowman and the National Theatre and a trip to Norway some time in the late spring, early summer (for it has been pinky sworn that we will go). I could hazard guesses at other events and I know there are decisions which will have to be made which, for now at least, I have been avoiding making but I suspect it's going to be a good year. And, anyway, if it can't be good then at least I know that it will be interesting. Which is, really, all I could ask for.