Friday, December 28, 2018

Reflections on 2018

Photos by Patrick Jones. My Instagram BestNine for 2018.
As I have done each year on this blog, I write a post reflecting back on my highlights and travels from the previous year. While 2018 has been a garbage year for the country as a whole, I had a number of really great experiences. I have found myself using Instagram more than Facebook, or this blog, for sharing photos while I travel. As an example, the photo above shows my top nine most liked photos of 2018. The top left is a piece by Banksy taken at the Beyond the Streets exhibition in Los Angeles in May. The top middle is a view of La Perla, San Juan, Puerto Rico. The top right is from Barcelona. The middle left is a view of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the middle photo is a mural by Hawaiian artist Kamea Hadar in Long Beach, and the middle right shows a group of luchadores driving classic cars in Los Angeles. The bottom row are murals from Pow Wow Hawaii, taken in March 2018 while we were in Honolulu on Spring Break.


I started January returning from a visit with family in Columbia, South Carolina. Later in the month, I made my annual January trip to Los Angeles. I was able to visit the Getty Museum and catch a sunset view.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Sunset at the Getty Museum. 17 Jan 2018.

In February we moved into a new house. I recall the pain of walking and climbing 48 miles in five days, on top of the all the boxes I moved half a mile from the old house to the new one.

Shortly after the move, I flew to Singapore to deliver training, and then went to Kathmandu, Nepal for a conference. Nepal was amazing, and I wish I had more time to see the country. While in Singapore I was able to catch the stunning Art from the Streets exhibition at the Art Science Museum, one of three excellent street art exhibitions I was able to see during 2018.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Crystal Universe, Art Science Museum. 19 Feb 2018.
The following month I flew to San Juan, Puerto Rico for meetings. This place brings back many memories, and I have been lucky to visit San Juan over the years going back to 1999. It is good to see the island recovering from the devastating hurricanes from 2017.

At the end of March, we took a family trip to Oahu and Kauai, Hawaii. This was a lovely trip, but I think we enjoyed our time in a house on Kauai most. Some highlights were the catamaran trip with Captain Andy's, seeing whales and swimming with turtles, a lazy afternoon at Lava Lava Beach Club, and a helicopter ride around the Na'Pali Coast
Photo by Patrick Jones. Art by MField. Lava Lava Beach Club, Kauai. 27 Mar 2018.
Mom, Laura and I after the helicopter ride, Kauai. 29 Mar 2018.
In April I went to Ankara, Turkey to deliver a training and speak at a conference. I also saw a very cool art exhibition at the Renwick Gallery in DC on the art of Burning Man. April and May were also filled with watching Little League Baseball games. In mid-May I returned to LA and managed to catch the excellent Beyond the Streets exhibition.
Speaking at Middle East DNS Forum, Ankara, Turkey. 25 Apr 2018.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Behind the Hollywood Sign. LA. 18 May 2018.
In June I helped deliver a training in Istanbul, and ended the month with meetings in Panama. While in Panama I was able to see the Miraflores Locks of the Panama Canal. I also managed a bonus day in Casco Viejo, Panama.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Sunset over Istanbul. 5 Jun 2018.
In July we returned to South Carolina, where we had a wonderful visit with family and managed to get out on the boat on Lake Murray. We closed out the month with an impressive concert by Beyoncé and Jay-Z at Fed Ex Field. In August I was back in LA for meetings, and I was able to catch a Major League Soccer game between the LA Galaxy and the Colorado Rapids. I also saw the Vitality and Verve exhibition at the Long Beach Museum of Art.

September included another trip to LA for meetings, followed by a long weekend for Allison and I in Sonoma. We were able to enjoy a winery tour with friends and experience the amazing grounds of the Donum Estate and historic Three Sticks Adobe in Sonoma. We finished the trip in San Francisco with my frequent traveling sister and a great dinner in Chinatown.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Mural in Healdsburg, California. 28 Sept 2018.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Merlot grapes, Geyserville, CA. 28 Sept 2018.
Early October kicked off with our annual Art on the Avenue. We took the kids to see the replica Viking ship Draken Harald Hårfagre at the Wharf DC. October also included more Little League Baseball under the lights.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Draken Harald Hårfagre. 8 Oct 2018.
At the end of the month, I flew to Barcelona for our annual general meeting. During the meeting I was able to see Leo Messi and FC Barcelona beat La Liga rivals Sevilla 4-2, along with an unfortunate broken arm injury to Messi. The stadium atmosphere was amazing though and this certainly checked off a bucket list item for me.
Photo by Patrick Jones. FC Barcelona game, 20 Oct 2018.
On the return flight from Barcelona, I had a stopover in Dublin and captured moody early morning lights over the Liffey River. I shared many more photos from Barcelona and Dublin on Instagram.

In November I had one more trip to Los Angeles for meetings. December capped off the year with a whirlwind trip through Dubai, Moscow, Minsk, Kyiv and Athens. This trip marked my first visit to Greece, a truly stunning place. 24 hours is not enough for Athens, I will have to go back and take the family.
Photo by Patrick Jones. View from my Airbnb. 8 Dec 2018.
Looking at this review brings back memories of the year. I was really lucky to see so many places and share these experiences with family and great friends.

2019 promises new places and return visits to some old favorites. I am starting the year with a round-the-world trip to three offices - LA, Singapore, Brussels. LA and Singapore are two of my favorite cities. This will be my second round-the-world, first since 2014. February and March also have long flights scheduled, and I will be making several trips to Asia during the first half of the year. I am looking forward to reunions with great friends, and I'm already planning a family trip for summer 2019.

From a family history perspective, I started a project to convert a series of old slides taken by both sets of grandparents, ranging in dates from the 1950s to 1970s and mid 1980s. This has already yielded some wonderful finds, restoring history to digital and bringing about some photographic time travel.

I have a few good books underway which will carry me into 2019. David Kipen's Dear Los Angeles has been a fascinating read. For Christmas I was gifted the hefty Beastie Boys Book, a 571 page memoir written by Michael Diamond and Adam Horowitz. I will have more thoughts on these into the New Year.

I keep this blog for myself and family. Sometimes distant cousins stumble onto these pages and reach out online. Maybe some years down the line my kids will see these pages, the photos and stories I have captured on the family history and my own adventures.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.