A 1-mile open water swim!
2. Did you keep your New Year's resolutions?
The only one I can remember is to put something in Sainsbury’s food bank once a week. I ended up going shopping less than usual, but I was pretty good about donating when I did go.
3. What countries did you visit?
I had a day trip to France with my friend M in late February, and boy am I glad I did!
4. What would you like to have in 2021 that you lacked in 2020?
A European motorcycle trip.
5. What date from 2020 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Can't remember the date, but the first time I got to see Howard after lockdown
6. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
The Hever Castle swim.
7. What was your biggest failure?
I tried to check in on all my friends but there were people I forgot or didn’t get round to. One of those people died in June.
8. Did you suffer illness or injury?
No thank goodness. Never have I lived in such a constant state of hypochondria.
9. What was the best thing you bought?
A framed print of the Royal Mail’s Living Daylights stamp. Utterly pointless and self-indulgent. I love it.
10. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
My employers and colleagues were wonderful at adapting our working life and making sure everybody was OK. Howard was very considerate and supportive in a difficult year when we couldn’t see each other as often as usual.
11. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
Other people at the supermarket, mostly.
12. Where did most of your money go?
Model aeroplane kits? I didn’t notice the huge savings everyone else is reporting; I certainly didn’t save much on commuting, although I put less petrol in the bike than usual.
13. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Support bubbles: getting to hug Howard, and spend the weekend with him, for the first time since lockdown. Going to the ZOO! with M.
14. What song will always remind you of 2020?
'Chan Chan' by Buena Vista Social Club. I listened to this one a lot.
15. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Writing. Gone to the cinema in the brief windows when you could.
16. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Meetings. When you can’t just pop by someone’s desk for a chat, every work conversation becomes another bloody meeting.
17. How will you spend Christmas?
I spent Christmas Day at home with my flatmate. We ate a lot of roast potatoes, then I went for a walk in the park with my friend R and we had mulled wine from a Thermos.
18. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
19. What was the best book you read?
Either Salman Rushdie’s Quichotte or David Mitchell’s Utopia Avenue.
20. What did you want and get?
I passed my internship and was promoted to Junior Content Designer.
21. What did you want and not get?
I was turned down for another position I applied for.
22. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I was 43 and I climbed the Millennium Dome!
23. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
My furry novella getting published. Conventions weren't on the cards this year so publishers didn't bring a lot out. This year, hopefully!
24. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2020?
I have embraced elasticated-waist trousers. On the days I actually bothered getting dressed, that is.
25. What kept you sane?
My flatmate. I was afraid we'd get on each other's nerves, as normally we're both out a lot, but having coffee breaks during the work day, ordering a pizza on Friday night, experimenting with cocktails and watching Remington Steele became very important.
26. Who was the best new person you met?
The External Comms team, with whom I spent 4 months on a placement. I joined during lockdown and only ever met a few of them in person, but they made me feel welcome and one of them straight away.
28. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2020.
Don't put off the things you want to do.
29. What were your favourite moments of the year?
Riding up the drive of Stonor Park. Throwing myself through waves at the beach, then having an ice cream. That time I made a joke so dreadful that my flatmate spent a full minute yelling at me to GET IN THE BIN.
30. What are your plans for 2021?
More swimming. More writing. More biking.