Reminiscing 2020

The Year That Was

It’s that time of the year – time to write my usual year end post. As I sit here reflecting on the year that’s gone by, I am finding it difficult to fathom all the things that have happened. It feels like I’ve been engulfed in a hurricane that hasn’t died down yet. Overwhelmed is maybe how I feel right now. It’s not just me, everyone is probably feeling the same way. I am also finding it difficult to demarcate the good and the bad. It’s like salt and sugar mingled in equal proportions. I cannot pick one from the other. Every good had its associated bad and vice versa. There was no gray. Everything was in sharp contrast. Yet, it’s hard to pick one without the other. That’s how life happened to me personally in 2020.

Here’s a summary of the year as it was for me – the weird and one-of-a-kind year.

  1. 2020 has to be an unforgettable year for me. The reason is my father, who suddenly left for his heavenly abode. He was blessed and fortunate to have been able to leave this world as easily as he did. However, not a single day goes by when I don’t remember him. Getting used to his absence is something I am trying hard to learn.
  2. 2020 has been the year of pandemic lockdowns. We’ve been confined to our homes for a significant part of the year. It provided an opportunity to discover and appreciate joy derived from the small things of life – things that we otherwise overlooked. It was also an opportunity to contemplate and be cognizant of all those things that we had taken for granted in life.
  3. 2020 was supposed to be a no-travel-year for everyone. I have been privileged to have traveled quite a bit throughout the year, including an international travel too.
    • Bhadrika Ashram, Himachal Pradesh, to start the year.
    • Miami, USA on an official visit.
    • Madurai, Rameshwaram and Dhanushkodi with my parents – turned out to be the last trip with my father.
    • Number of places in Meghalaya – Shillong, Nartiang, and Cherrapunjee.
    • Number of places in the outskirts of Bangalore, including Mysore, BR Hills, and more.
    • Some beaches and temples in Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
  4. 2020 was supposed to be a year of no treks but two treks happened to me, both in the outskirts of Bangalore. No Himalayas this year.
  5. Circumstances led to spending a lot of family time together in our Shillong home. Not just the immediate family but extended family too. Also, this was the first time in many years that I got to spend quality time in my father’s garden that he had painstakingly built over several years.
  6. Again, it was circumstances that led me to participate in our family Durga Puja after a gap of 20 years.
  7. The pandemic led me to revisit my hobby of stitching as I hand-stitched masks for myself and also for family and friends.
  8. Hit by a pandemic related downsizing at work, I had to leave the job that had me engaged for 8 years. However, destiny presented me with another job offer and I was employed in less than a month’s time. (My father’s blessings I’d like to believe.)
  9. It will be unfair if I miss mentioning those few people who went out of their ways to do things for me. People, who are not friends, people who I just causally met or interacted with. These people left me speechless and made me wonder if at all I deserved all of those acts of kindness!  Sometimes I feel inspired to be the same, sometimes I feel indebted not knowing what I could do in return.
  10. The year ended with my cousin visiting me and working from my home in Bangalore for the whole of December. It did leave me very busy as I struggled to manage home and the expectations of a new job. But the joyful moments I have been having at home is priceless and inestimably precious.

2020 – the year like no other – has been as tumultuous as it can be. However, there is no room to complain. My year has been like a garden of roses when compared to the untold sufferings people world over have had. I can only express my gratitude and pray to the Almighty to keep me grounded, judicious, and steady in 2021 and beyond.

Author: neelstoria

Traveling, Gardening, Trekking, Hiking, Storytelling, Writing, Nature, Outdoors, Yoga, DIY

10 thoughts on “Reminiscing 2020”

  1. What a year. I literally just finished reading a collection of poems called “Bittersweet” and that word seems to sum up this year nicely for me and from what you’ve shared here for you as well. I’m glad that in the face of so many awful things, many good things also came along for you.

    May 2021 have a much better ratio of good things to bad things for you – and everyone else.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Peppered with good and bad, 2020 is not likely to be forgotten. But glad that the good things resurfaced for you without much delay. The new job must be hectic, and a new environment and colleagues seen only over video calls a challenge. But it could be the face of things to come.

    Great that you still managed so much travel this year. And the kaansh phool, that was on the BR hills road is it? I remember that stretch and was reminded when I saw that video.

    Hope 2021 is kinder to everyone, and we gain back a lot of what is lost!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Everything about the new job feels so unusual, the laptop arrives home, so does the ID Card. I am getting used to the new environment. Been for 8+ years in the previous company and hence there’s a lot of unlearn and a lot to learn too.

      The Kaansh phool was indeed on way to BR Hills. The drive was unimaginably beautiful especially because of the stretches of these flowers. Though I was surprised to see them at at this time of the year.

      Happy 2021 to you and your family, Deb. Lots of happiness, outdoors and good health.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What an eventful year. I was quite enjoying your lockdown blogs when they were interrupted by the series of unfortunate turns that you told us about. Some things are never forgotten, but I hope you get back to your usual writing about your walks, trips, and treks. All the best for 2021.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been really lagging behind with WP given all the things going on in my personal life. Spread too thin at the moment. I do have many posts to write and everything is piling up.
      Wish you and your family a very happy 2021. Let there be all the things that bring you happiness – travel and outdoors, and of course good health.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Despite all the bad things, we have good souls around us. Helping and protecting us in their own ways. It is this very thing that helps us to tide over bad times. I know this hasn’t been a good year for you, I’m hoping 2021 will unfurl better times. I’m sure you will find many new places to trek despite not visiting the Himalays. Take care, friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Totally Arvind. I firmly believe that there are more good people than bad in this world. Wish you a very good year too. Let more outdoors happen to you and looking forward to many more little known stories from Jaipur.


  5. Not related, but just recollected. There is (at least read when we visited two years back) a quaint vegetarian eatery called Bhagyashree Brahmin mess just before the final ascend to BR hills. A farm, with the owner setting up three wooden benches and piping hot South Indian meals on Banana leaf, seated semi outdoors. And then cross a small field to wash you hands in a hand pump 😀. Bliss, if you like that kind of food and if you visit BR hills again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow! Had I known this, would have most certainly checked out. Especially with my cousin who’s visiting me now being a food connoisseur, she would have absolutely loved it. I just googled it and many people have recommended it. Will keep in mind for the next time. Thanks for the info. 🙂


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