With all the crap that has happened this year, to me and to people around the world, I still was not one of those who said "2016 is the worst year ever" because let's be honest, every years SUCKS... for the most part. Although this year had more than its fair share of horror and tragedy, it was also filled with some good memories. It was a year of many firsts for me, both good and bad. Which is why I wanted to share 16 (yes I know it's cliche) moments that made me smile this year.
1) Tripoli: After not visiting Tripoli for seven years, I ended up going north twice this year. The first time was a little family getaway at Via Mina and the second was a day trip again with the family.
2) First friends trip to Dubai: This year I travelled with friends for the first time. Although I've been abroad with friends before I had never actually traveled with them (by them I mean Shahine :P) before. Dubai will always be a special city to me because it's a part of my childhood and although I don't see myself living there (at least at the moment), it's still a great place for a little getaway. I really enjoyed seeing friends who I hadn't seen in a while and just chilling like a tourist.
3) Short trip to the US: I wasn't planning on going to the US this year but due to some family emergencies I had to fly there for a short period of time. I'm used to going there for at least a month so it was really odd to be there for just over a week. I didn't do much, but it was great to see the family again!
4) Visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter: The highlight of my trip to the US was being able to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I had lunch at the Three Broomsticks guys, it was awesome!
5) Summer road trips: My friends and I decided to take advantage of our weekends in summer for mini road trips. I was worried it would be something we do once or twice, but we successfully went to Tyre, Batroun, Baakline, Byblos, Zahle and Anjar. We will discover even more of Lebanon in 2017!
6) Trying to get over my fear of dogs: I don't think I've mentioned this before but I used to be terrified of dogs for most of my life due to an incident which occurred when I was 6/7 years old in Fresno. Over the years I've tried to get over this fear and almost succeeded thanks to my friend's dog Bouchy but she moved away. This year, I met two doggies which really helped me put the fear behind me again. First there was Gin, who I met on a night out with friends at Neighbors, and the second is the puppy above, who I FED! Guys, I gave a dog food and he ate it and I didn't die or get bitten in the process. Although my heart did melt.
7) Starting the #20to25Challenge and going to the gym: I had no plans in early 2016 to start a diet or to lose weight, but it happened spontaneously and until now I've lost 10 kgs which is amazing. I also no longer dread going to the gym and actually look forward to working out. More from the #20to25Challenge here.
8) Cooking nights with friends: If you follow me on Instagram you're already aware of this but every Friday night my friends and I would get together and cook dinner. We made Texmex Chili, Italian and Indian and omg they were all so yummy! We've been a little lazy recently, but we're going to get back to it once the festive period is over.
9) First uhnts uhnts DJ event: You're all probably already aware of this but I'm not much of an uhns uhns electronic music lover. Which is why I'd never been to a proper DJ event before (apart for a Paul Van Dyck event I had to go for work two years back). This year I said yes to going to such an event and it was fun. Although the organization sucked and it was a hassle to get into the Aviccii venue, the concert itself was pretty fun.
10) Camping for the first time: Up until this year I had never stepped food in a tent before or gone camping in my life. This year, I ended up going camping twice with friends and it was SO MUCH FUN. The first time we went to HillHout in Khenshara and the second time we drove to Chahtoul Camping. I can't wait for the weather to be warm again so that I can drag the crew back to a camp site.
11) Interviewed Stephane Rolland: One of the perks of my job is that I get to interview fun people, sometimes these people are a big effing deal... like Stephane Rolland. When my boss told me that I would be interviewing the French couturier I almost lost my shiz.
12) Finding the perfect leather jacket: This needs a mention of its own, you can read more about it here.
13) Trying blue wine: This is a bit random but I tried blue wine for the first time at Ales&Tales, one of my favorite pubs in Beirut. My friend and I actually finished the last bottle! (we didn't drink the whole thing)
14) Discovering new places: Every weekend I felt like I was going to the same places with the same people and doing the same thing. My friends and I decided that we're going to try new places and get out of our comfort zone. We've discovered some really cool places and I've finally found a club that plays good r&b that I can dance like a maniac to!
15) Going green: Another thing I didn't think I'd be doing this year is changing my hair color to green. I've only had this hair for about a month now but I feel like I've had it for years. It has definitely opened up the door to new colors for the future... possibly purple or silver, maybe even pink!
16) Comfortable blogging again: Last but not least, I wanted to share that after a long time of feeling uninspired to blog, I've got my groove back again. This time around the feedback has been really positive and encouraging so I've had a drive to keep me going. From the bottom of my
black heart, I'd like to thank you guys for being so supportive! I WUV YOU
BONUS: My best friend from school, Bellz, finally came back to Lebanon for a visit!!! Also, January will be awesome because my other best friend comes back and the three of us (aka the Khiars) shall be finally reunited, muahaha!
2016, you were pretty shitty in general but there were some good moments in there... thank you for everything but get the f*ck out! I'm ready for 2017!
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