I've made it through 24 years. I'm at the coffee shop, and my norm is to blog as the baristas attach my IV drip of caffeine. I've included a few reflections of things I've done in the 24th year of my life.
I experienced two plane trips before I graduated high school. One in 8th grade, and another my senior year. Two years ago August, I picked up a part time job with Delta and began to travel quite a bit more than I ever could've previously afforded. 24 brought me to Amsterdam twice, Paris, Cancun, Seattle, Tampa, St. Louis, and Minneapolis a couple of times. I met people from cultures all over the world, and gained so many interesting stories.
I shot way more than I had anticipated. I'm not going to go count right now, but I'm guessing around 12 weddings, and numerous family and senior shoots. I moved into a photography studio downtown, and am continuing to refine my art of photography. I'm really excited for what the next year will bring. I partnered with a coffee shop and a few breweries to keep me drinking for free. I've also cut out most of my teaching (piano and guitar lessons) to make more time for photography, even though I miss it.
If you know me, I pick up hobbies like that (snaps finger). I stumble upon an untapped interest and research all I can. I will shift hobbies when another becomes so interesting, or the current hobby has fulfilled what I thought it should. The past year has held a couple of new ventures.
My coffee snobbery began sometime last year and is reaching new heights around now-ish. My initial Chemex has given birth to a whole coffee family including a french-press, bee house, aeropress, siphon, and espresso machine and bean grinder. From coffee documentaries, to intense late night coffee experiments, it's been a fun ride. I know exactly what I like, and my favorite brew methods. I recently purchased a hand pumped espresso machine where you can produce the same bars of pressure as a multi-thousand dollar machine - if you control the variables perfectly (water temp, pressure, tamp / grounding of the bean). It's fun. Come over for a drink sometime. One of the brew methods involves fire and looks like I am cooking meth, but I am not.
A buddy of mine began my scotch obsession (better than harsh and untrue words like addiction, dependance, and alcoholic) when he presented me with a bottle of Highland Park 12yr. It was beautiful, and didn't taste like any of that Canadian whiskey I've had before. As with coffee, I watched documentaries, tasting videos, and began buying bottles. I now have a collection of 12 or so bottles, and many are nearly gone. I taught friends to be snobs and they drank my booze. My favorite of the year is probably The Macallan Rare Cask. The buddy that bought me my first scotch was moving away, so we shared a 1.5 oz pour. Even at a half price happy hour price of $35, it was spendy, but that was an excellent evening. A second favorite was last week - Lagavulin 12. I have a bottle of the 16yr, which is much more expensive, but there is much more peat (smoke) in the lesser year scotches. It was dang good.
A hobby I still need to find time to return to. I bought acrylic paints, canvases, and charcoal sketch materials. I painted for a bit, and this was very difficult for me. I bought an Art History text book and watched way too many youtube documentaries on 2x speed. Woof. I've been going to local art exhibitions since, and I'm a little more education. This is definitely a life endeavor, but I love it.
I ran a 5k, I lost a total of 45lbs, I started rock climbing, I wrote a few songs, I became obsessed with playing bluegrass guitar, I joined the hammocking trend, and I flew a plane.
Year 24 was fun, and I hope year 25 is fun now that I'm 24.