While things were painfully limping along in the running department, I tried to get organized with my list. After all, it was supposed to have started on 1 January. Well, my new blog never got off the ground as I am finding it challenging enough to stay abreast of this one. However, the idea is not completely off the table, so it may still happen. I also think I know what it will be about, and am fairly excited by it!
I managed to book 2 tickets to A-HA's farewell concert. They are doing 4 concerts in North America, 2 in New York and 2 in LA. The pre-sale tickets were impossible to get as the site kept crashing. The tickets were all gone in 10 minutes! Who knew A-HA are so popular in North America?! Anyway, I began to think that I would not get tickets, and this would mean having to go to Norway or Sweden over the summer for their concerts there, and I was rather looking forward to it. Still, I was very pleased when I managed to get my hands on 2 tickets when they finally went on sale on 5 February. It took me the better part of the morning, but on 7 May, I will be at the Nokia theatre in New York with A-HA.
Next, I started reading the first book on the Man Booker 2009 shortlist: AS Byatt's The Children's Book. This is a good one, as I did not like her Possession very much. I am only a few chapters in, but it is superbly written, and a delicious use of words.
The next items were not spending money for a week, which called for organization and forethought, but I managed it. It also meant not going out or even buying a coffee. It was good for me; and today I am finishing my no-spending week for February! I also saved my $5 per day for January, and am also happy to report that I am now down to 2 bags of unopened mail.
The mail story is excruciating, as we get still get loads of mail from Geneva. In addition to all kinds of other stuff - it is truly a nightmare but I am determined to manage this better. Thankfully it does not involve bills, just lots of receipts, statements and what not.
We did not organize a dinner party this month as we were invited to one, which was very nice. This month though I am going to organize one here at home, and get some of our new friends to meet each other. Also, I have a plan to play secret cupid.....there are 2 people whom I think absolutely have to meet.....
I started learning French again, and it's amazing how much I have forgotten since leaving Geneva. For anyone else interested, there is a wonderful podcast (free) called "Learn French with Alexa", which is for complete beginners. There is another called "One thing in a French Day" and is a bit more advanced, but very entertaining! Leticia lives near Paris and has 2 young children. Her podcasts are about episodes of her daily life. The first podcast is good for slowly learning the grammar and pronounciation. If you speak any other romance language, know that French follows the same grammatical rules, and Alexa has a website where you can also download a cheat sheet for lessons 1-15. The second podcast is good for 'building your ear' and also helps you acquire a more colloquial, conversational French. Nice to build on the usual "hello, my name is X and I am from XX".
My final item starting in January, was to listen to one of Wagner's operas. Since my goal is to listen to them all, I started with the first - Das Liebesverbot. Well, Wagner wanted to be Beethoven when he grew up, so you can hear his and Weber's influence in this work. The work itself is easy to listen to, without the sturm und drang of his later work!
Starting the list made me realize how much there is still to do, and is a great way of actually getting things done. I would love to know how this is working for other people!