Seeing as there is only one day left in this year, I figured it's about time I write my last post of 2009 and reflect back on what made it fucking awesome - because it was, truly, an incredible year. I'll probably forget some of the reasons why, but I'll try and jot down as many as I can think of anyway! There were some bad times too, and it'd be stupid of me to ignore them because one has to take the good with the bad in life, but I won't dwell on them either because there's no point to that!
On February 5th 2009, I hit the big 2-1. It wasn't something I was particularly looking forward to, especially since I'd been accepted into a new group of friends in late November/December of '08 and I wasn't sure if anybody would actually be around to celebrate it with me. One of the women I worked with at the time told me to get something for my mother, because 21 is a big age for the mother of a child too. So, I got her a big bouquet and left it with a card on the kitchen table while I trekked through the snow into town to get my second tattoo - a star in between my shoulder blades. Noodles accompanied me and squeezed my hand through it, encouraging me by asking "What would Corey do?" over and over. That night, I went to dinner with my mother (who cried over her gift) AND father, and siblings, to Yamamori, then afterwards Mam and I had cocktails in my favourite gay bar. After that, I met up with some of the people who managed to make it into town that night, in one of my favourite bars. Star turned up with a rose for me and the emo turned up to surprise me. It was a long night, but a good one. My proper celebration was the following Saturday, in another of my favourite bars. I got some of the most unconventional presents I've ever received, including chocolate skulls from Stella and a Batman book, starring me, from Sticky. It was another great night, but the celebrations didn't end there. The following weekend, Noodles and I headed to London for my birthday present. I was a bit ill while we were there, but we managed to tear it up and shop till we dropped all the same. My birthday, and the subsequent celebrations, calmed any fears I'd had about having no friends, being hated and never falling for anybody again. It was a very warming experience.
My going away party
Seeing as I was leaving to spend a semester abroad in Munich, I had to party in Dublin one last time before I left. So, I gathered as many of my friends as I could on my second last night in the city, in one of my all-time favourite bars, and proceeded to get well and truly hammered. I should probably mention that this night didn't exactly go smoothly... The emo got very upset with me for hooking up with Dill in front of him (something he still finds painful to discuss), Noodles was pissed off when one of his best friends pulled me despite the fact he and his girlfriend were only "on a break" at the time (neither he nor the girlfriend speak to me anymore, but whatever) and I yelled at Mewes for turning up and then subsequently trying to pull Star on the dancefloor. It was a messy night, but a great one. It was exactly the way I wanted to leave, without tears or drama or stupidity. I wanted a drunken, silly, fun going away party, and that's exactly what I got. On the bus home, I listened to Radiohead and sobbed quietly into the emo's shoulder. Scooby and I said an emotional goodbye and then Noodles and I stood on the freezing cold street for the first of many before our proper one the following day. I felt very light-headed that night, and the following night at dinner with my family. The feeling of inevitability about the whole thing was weird, but in a good way.
Erasmus in Munich
On February 28th, I began my Erasmus and, as a result, one of the best times of my life. I can't even begin to explain how much my time in Munich meant to me, how much fun I had, the amazing people I met, how much I learned about myself and life and friendship and living alone.. Erasmus was easily one of the best experiences of my life. Words cannot adequately express how much fun it was. It was incredible, life-changing, amazing... It was an altogether positive experience that I wouldn't trade for anything. I would go back and do it all again right now if I could, and I regret absolutely none of it. It hurt to return home and settle back into life in Dublin, and if I'm honest, after being in Munich, I realised that I don't want to spend my life in Ireland. My place isn't here. There's a whole world out there waiting to be explored, and luckily my chosen career can be carried out pretty much anywhere, so there's nothing really holding me back. Being on Erasmus built up my self-confidence to the point where I was able to let go of all of the negativity and hurt I'd been holding onto and just focus on living, being happy and figuring out who I really am. I took everything I'd learned home with me and I haven't let go of it since then. It was truly incredible. Not only did I get to see Munich, but I got to visit Berlin, Vienna, Augsburg, Nuremberg and Prague, to name but a few. I got a taste of what it's like to live by myself and I made some amazing friends. Charley, probably my best friend over there (besides Saz, of course), influenced me hugely and I really don't think I could've done it without her. I got the drunkest I've ever been, pulled people I can't even remember, carried my best friend down the street and danced in Goth clubs and basements in equal measure. It was the most fantastic time of my life and it went by way too quickly. I think about it every day and I don't know if I'll ever have another experience to equal it.
Seeing as I spent half the year in Munich, I didn't get to attend as many gigs as I usually would have. However, in June, I managed to get to Rock im Park with the emo and two of the lads I'd met on Erasmus (one Irish, the other American). It was an odd group, and everything that could possibly have went wrong that weekend did, but it was still really good fun. Slipknot were, of course, the highlight of the three days, and they were totally worth standing in the freezing cold rain for an hour beforehand to see. The emo and I somehow managed to overcome everything that went wrong and come out of it still being friends (and more than that too, obviously) and I bawled like a baby the whole way home on the train after I dropped him off at the airport. Rock im Park was a very significant festival for me, because not only was it the only one I'd been to besides Download, but it was a completely different atmosphere to the others I'd been at. And it was fucking awesome. Besides RIP, Noodles hooked me up with a Metallica ticket for a gig two days after I returned home from Munich. I wasn't really in the mood for it, since I was suffering from post-Erasmus withdrawal at the time, but it turned out to be an awesome welcome back. Marlay Park, as always, came alive and Metallica stormed through their set. Whiskey in the jar was particularly emotive for me, for obvious reasons, but mostly it was just great to be doing something enjoyable back home, and with Noodles. We also went to see Dylan Moran with Scooby. That was fantastic. I've been a fan of his for so long and it was awesome to see him live and in the flesh. The last gig of 2009 was, of course, Paramore and I was unashamedly excited to see them again. They were fantastic, Hayley looked beautiful and it was a great night out with Saz and Niamh. It did make me feel a bit old to be surrounded by 15-year-olds in their underwear, but it was great fun nonetheless. It reminded me of how much fun rock gigs are - not that I'd forgotten! - and also how great it is to be young and spontaneous and without a care in the world.
2009 was the year I sorted my shit out and not only made amends with people I'd pissed off in the past, but also cut out those who really had no place in my life to begin with. I'm sick of having to justify why certain people don't have any right to be a part of my life, but if I have to, I will and I'm not going to hold back anymore. There was one person in particular, who spent the best part of this year trying to force me into being friends with him again after I'd told him in no uncertain terms that he'd gone too far, whose harassment eventually drove me to change my number. It was sad, because we had been best friends for several years, but his abuse of the friendship was just too much and I began to realise, after some sound advice, that I was giving but getting nothing back. If that sounds extreme, it's because I haven't gone into detail about what this person did and said to me, and his unwillingness to accept my decision. I realised, probably while in Munich, that I have given certain people too many chances in the past. I have no intention of doing that again. Nobody has to work to be my friend. I ask for very little, but I'm not a pushover and I refuse to be treated like one. It took me losing all but a handful of my friends, and subsequently being accepted into a brand new group of people, for me to realise that I had gained far more than I'd lost. Now that that rant is over, I can begin to shower praise on those wonderful people who made this year as special as it was. The friends I now hold close to my heart are the best I've ever had, and although I'm not going to name names (because they know who they are), I will say that they are the most accepting, positive, intelligent, fun and interesting people I've ever met in my life. My life would suck and this year would have been shit without them. I am eternally grateful to them for accepting me into their lives. I don't know where I'd be without them.
My never-boring love life
2009 was the year I sowed my wild oats, so to speak. I pulled more than I ever have in my life. Not everybody agreed with it, but luckily the people who mattered did. One of the best things I heard about myself this year came courtesy of a chick who barely even knew me at the time, a good friend of Noodles, who stated "So she has a polyamorous relationship? At least she's honest about it. Who gives a shit!?". Strangely enough, she was absolutely right. I don't know why people had such a problem with what I was doing, seeing as it's nobody else's business and I was absolutely honest about it. But, as the months rolled past, I had to make a decision and, as I've previously stated, I chose my lovely emo to be my boyfriend. Dill is still one of my closest friends, Star is considered an ex without the negative connotations associated therewith, and we're still very close. So all's well that ends well. Although it feels weird to have settled down and have a boyfriend again, it's also really great to be in an honest, mature, adult relationship for the first time in my life. This is not my first adult relationship, but it is my first mature relationship. And, without gushing too much, he is the sweetest guy in the whole world, one of my best friends, one of the funniest people I know, so much fun to be around, so smart, creative, understanding, caring, silly, crazy, sexy....everything I've ever wanted in another human being, to be perfectly honest. The relationship is not effortless, because by their nature relationships are not, but it's pretty damn close. And honestly, I can't believe I ever settled for anything less, but one lives and learns.
I got really, really into tattoos this year. I got three more in 2009, taking my total to four (and counting!), all of which had semi-significant meaning. The second was on my 21st birthday, a star between my shoulderblades as I've previously stated. That one, I chose on the spur of the moment. I hate star tatts, I think they'rea bit cliched, but I wanted something 21st-esque and that's what I got. The third was a heart being squeezed by a whip on my right shoulder - a pro-gay symbol which means love of women and love of fetish - that I got in Munich. It was difficult to ask for in German, but it was worth it. It's probably my favorite tattoo, not to mention the most meaningful. I love it. And the fourth was a second black heart on my left wrist, which I got on Halloween (the same day the emo asked me out), that was really just because I loved the symbol and wanted it on my wrist. It's a negative, dark symbol, but it means a lot. I love all four of my tatts and I have no plans to stop soon. They were a huge part of the year because they symbolised significant moments and they cost a hell of a lot of money!
I'm very glad to say that there were very few lows in 2009. I can't really think of any major ones, thank fuck, but I suppose there must have been a few. The most negative shit this year came courtesy of other people talking about me. However, I know who I am and what I've done. I know I'm not a saint, but I've never claimed to be. People still talking about me is a bad reflection on them, not me. Luckily, that doesn't really bother anymore. While I was in Munich, Star was approached several times by somebody (a mistake I made a long time ago). That pissed me off a lot, but I later found out that she handled herself quite well by informing him that we'd slept together many, many times and he didn't have a chance in hell with her. I don't know why this shit was still happening a year after the break-up, but whatever. Once again, bad reflection on him, not me. Mewes and I had a dreadful fight via email while I was away, too. He was very harsh and said some unforgiveable, ridiculous, completely false and very unfair shit that was, I was later told, said under the influence of drugs - surprise, surprise - which, in my mind, doesn't excuse it in the slightest. I'd love to publish those emails on here, but it doesn't bother me anymore so meh. He wasn't much of a friend and I don't miss his bullshit so oh well! The only other person I fought with was my mother. I walked out on her for a week and, when I returned, she decided to pretend the whole thing had never happened. I suppose that's the best I can expect from her. She's not a bad person or a bad mother, and I love her. I just don't necessarily like her all the time. Having said that, we ended 2008 on good terms and 2009 will end in much the same way, which I'm very pleased about. Overall, there weren't many lows this year. 2009 was a year of highs, for which I'm extremely grateful. Now time for some best ofs!!
Album of the year - Brand New Eyes - Paramore.
Gig of the year - Slipknot at Rock im Park.
Film of the year - I don't really have one... I didn't get to see many, but Harry Potter, Bruno and Adventureland were all great.
Book of the year - I don't know if it came out this year, but Bad Day in Blackrock by Kevin Power was fantastic.
Song of the year - Ignorance - Paramore. Not only was it the catchiest of this year, it quickly became my theme tune!
New obsession of the year - Mega64. My life would suck without these guys, it really would.
Comic/Graphic Novel of the year - My favourite is definitely the Scott Pilgrim series, but I'm not sure if any of them came out this year. Can't wait for the film next year!
Hottest chick - It's between Kat von D and Vikki Blows, for sure.
Hottest guy - Either Garrett Hunter or Noel Fielding. Yum.
Fashion icon - It's between Kat von D and Hayley Williams. I bow down to their almighty fashion sense. Wow.
Accessory of the year - My leather jacket. Love it. Or Docs!
Biggest achievements - Completing my semester abroad, losing a stone in weight, accepting myself, getting into a new relationship...
It's been a pretty fucking good year... I can't say that enough! I wrote more than I have in ages, met some amazing people, had fantastic experiences, drank a shitload, rocked out, worse some awesome clothes, pulled some hot people, discovered great new shit...and so much more! Here's to 2010 - the next decade is going to be even fucking better!!!
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