Putanga – Life on the Road

Stories from my journeys around the world…

Bye Bye Year 2010

Posted by Monica Johansen on December 31, 2010

So at last year 2010 has come to an end, and looking back at the last 12 months I can’t say it hasn’t been an interesting year.

I started the year working on a project in the Philippines, before I went back to Europe for the first time in 3.5 years. It was of course a stupid time to go to the UK and Norway, considering that it was pretty much the coldest time of the year, but I didn’t really have a choice since I went for a job interview and everything was paid for by the potential new employer. Nevertheless, it was great to be back in old neighborhoods and seeing old friends again, although it was a rather traumatic experience having to endure minus 15 degrees Celsius.

Taj Mahal in India

After my Europe visit I went straight to Dubai and from there to India. I had never been to the Middle East earlier, so that was a new and interesting destination. India was also a great experience, and I finally got to see one of the most fantastic wonders of the world, the gorgeous Taj Mahal in Agra. I spent quite a few weeks in India during the first quarter of 2010, and I also headed over to Nepal and Kathmandu for a long weekend, which was another new destination for me.

In the second quarter, from April to July, I spent a lot of time in Melbourne in Australia, and I had a great time visiting friends and enjoying the Australian hospitality. It was very cold in July, which of course is the middle of the winter, but it is actually nice to be able to wear jeans, boots and coats every now and then.

In July I started a new and interesting chapter of my life when I accepted a position in a much smaller company than the ones I had been working for over the last nine years. I knew it was going to be challenging to be the only consultant in APAC and trying to implement new processes and procedures for a team who had been doing things their own way for quite some time, and I must admit that it turned out to be even more challenging than I anticipated. However, as time goes by and people get used to new situations, everything will eventually fall into place and life will become easier.

The Sydney Opera House

During the third quarter of 2010 I finally went back to visit the US, and due to a cancelled plane I had the opportunity to spend a day in San Francisco in addition to spending time in Portland and Seattle. Hence, I could add three new cities to my list. I had a fantastic time in the US, not just because of the friendly Americans but also because I spent a week with my new manager and good old friend from the UK.

It was hard to go back to Asia after two great weeks in the US, but it was in fact even harder after my manager sent me to the UK for two weeks of training and job shadowing a little later this year. The days in London and Birmingham were fantastic, and I met a lot of nice people. I also went over to Oslo again for the weekend, and I had a blast with my old friends.

I am finally ending this year in the Emerald City, Sydney, where I have been working for four weeks and spent the last week of the year on holiday to catch up with friends and enjoy the great Australian climate. All in all it has been a really good year despite some work challenges and frustrations. I can only hope that next year will be as good or maybe even better.

Happy New Year! 🙂


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