On 2017, Afropunk and Resolutions

I love how as a society, out of all the days we give meaning to, we have one that we decided would be our day of “starting over”. We give ourselves an imaginary refresh button or a clean slate. We take a minute to reflect on the past year, we usually call it trash (2017 really was though), pick out a couple of highlights which we are grateful for, express relief for being alive to see the new year and we make lists of all the ways we want to do better in the next year. Most of our listed resolutions never actually get resolved but the fun part of it all is that if you are alive to see the clock strike midnight on the 31st December each year, you get to make new ones and again lie to yourself that this time, you really will go the gym at least 4 times a week and cut down on the carbs (wine is a carb, my friends). I too have a list of resolutions and wishes for 2018, I’m praying to God, the universe, my ancestors, my living ancestors, the force (who else has been to watch the new Star Wars movie? It’s quite good, right?), the holy spirit, the gods of money, sex and travel and any form of higher power to help me be a better person and stick to them.

2018 has to be better, especially considering the best way to describe my 2017 is to say that it was one long existential crisis where I could hardly strike a balance between work, social life and my family, all this, while my depression was having me.

2017 feels

Of course, there were a couple of highlights:

  1. Travel

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I started the year with a trip to Dakar, Senegal and it was everything. I had wanted to visit Dakar for as long as I could remember and after having my visa application rejected twice, I was starting to feel like it wasn’t meant to be. I’d even made friends with the staff at the embassy by the time my visa was finally granted. The wait turned out to be more than worth it, Dakar is an absolute gem. I had the most amazing time, I visited Goree Island, The African Renaissance Monument and went camel riding on the sand dunes, my camel turned out to be deranged but that’s all part of the adventure and I’d had pictures of the Pink Lake on my travel boards for years so to finally be there was one more thing to cross off my bucket list.

I was also lucky enough to visit Italy again after 10 years. I love love love Italy! Especially the men and the food. I mean, I appreciate the fashion, the architecture, the history but having had both, I must say, the men and the food are all I prefer to write home about. In my initial trip, I had visited Rome, Pisa, Venice and Florence and this time I got to explore the Amalfi Coast and Capri and fall more in love with Italia.

CROATIA! Just a couple of hours drive from Italy, through Slovakia, I found myself in Croatia and my gawd, is it beautiful. We stayed in Poreč and I spent my days walking on cobblestone streets, drinking chardonnay, enjoying the best seafood dishes and staring at mega-yachts and daydreaming about how good I’d look on one. I definitely cannot wait to visit Croatia again, maybe this time fit in an island tour.

Not to be forgotten, stargazing in Botswana. I had never seen the sky look so beautiful and the icing on the cake was seeing a shooting star, after which I made a wish which hasn’t come true but hey, it was such a sweet moment. I, also, had the most amazing meditation at the waterfalls in Palapye, it’s not surprising it’s such a sacred place for the Batswana.

  1. Making Friends, again.

After returning from Thailand, I’d been so busy settling in that I hadn’t reconnected with and really made it a priority to make time for my friends. I would regularly check in on my friend’s social media accounts to see if they are okay. That’s not good. So, in 2017, I really tried. I started by getting all my old friends, my high school homies, together. It has been years since we’d all been together, they’d all gotten together for a baby shower while I was living abroad but I wasn’t there. Our reunion was amazing. After the reunion, making plans with my friends and actually having a social life became a priority. This is literally the only resolution I resolved in 2017.

  1. Meet Thabo Mbeki

I graduated from the Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institution after completing the Public Policy for Africa’s Development programme was a definite highlight. A real self-pat on the back moment. Long distance learning is tough guys, yoh, especially with work commitments. I submitted assignments while working in Harare, Namibia and Uganda between visits to South African High Commissions, visiting art centres and swimming in the Nile.

  1. AFROPUNK

Good God, What a time to be black! I loved everything about Afropunk. I’m not the greatest Solange fan so when it was announced that she wouldn’t make it, I wasn’t too bummed. I just had never heard of Anderson Paak and he was now the headliner. But that wasn’t too much of a concern either because Thebe, King Tha, Sho Madjozi and Black Motion would be performing. First of all, Thebe won Afropunk. Fight me, I don’t care. He won the whole damn thing. The festival also felt like a primary school, high school, university, whole life reunion, I have never seen so many old faces in one space. I loved it. It was such a vibe. Such a special birthday gift from my special friend. It has now replaced the New Years I spent outside a strip club in Pattaya, Thailand as my most memorable NYE.

On paper 2017 isn’t looking so bad but these were the big moments, the little, everyday moments were really not so great so I’m very much over it and excited for the new year.

My 2018 Goals:

  1. Get a mentor or a life coach or both. Because baby girl needs some guidance.
  2. Volunteer. I keep on saying I’m passionate about a cause, but I never do anything about it. I can barely speak about it.
  3. Continue ghosting every “Mr Waste Your Time” who tries me.
  4. Yoga. Your girl has been stuck at the beginner level for almost 8 years. I need to be a better person.
  5. Take digital detoxes from social media a couple of days a month, every month.
  6. Create art.
  7. Write down a list of career enriching goals and have a plan.
  8. STOP PROCRASTINATING.
  9. SPEAK
  10. STOP PLAYING IT SAFE
  11. Go on more solo travels.
  12. Stick to my blogging schedule
  13. Write every day, or at least every two days.
  14. Just do the absolute most.

Maybe I’ll achieve all of these and I’ll be a better person for it or maybe I’ll wait to hit the refresh button on day 1 of 365 in 2019 and still be the glorious mess I have always been. How knows?

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What are some of your resolutions? Let me know in the comment section below, I’m really interested to know.

Happy New Year!

Love and Light.

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