Year 2o19 wrapped

Everything I put together all updates of different aspects of the life. Year 2019 is special as it closes the decade.

This time I feel I finished the decade's race absolutely empty. There were too many emotional blips and number of personal projects didn't even see the light but it's all about reflection on results!

Travel

I was convinced that I didn't often travel this year until I checked my passport. Only in December I managed to take 9 flights somehow, it wasn't even planned. Few years ago I was choosing travel destination only by the ticket price. Now I'd also consider cultural inheritance of the site to visit.

My travels during 2019

  • Russia: Saint-Petersburg(x5), Moscow
  • Spain: Fuerteventura, Palma de Mallorca, Deia, Oasis del Sur
  • Luxemburg: Luxemburg City
  • Itally: Genoa, Milan
  • USA: New York(NYC, Booklyn)
  • Japan: Tokyo, Sendai, Utsonomiya, Nikko, Yokohama, Nagano, Kurobe, Toyama, Kanazawa
  • China: Shanghai
  • Hong Kong: Hong Kong
  • Serbia: Belgrade
  • UK: Reading, Brighton, Seaford

(new destinations are in bold)

And my updated flight map:

flight map as of Jan 2020

In numbers:

  • 4 new countries and 18 new cities.
  • 26 borders crossed
  • 28 flights taken(most of them - direct), 42k miles flown, thanks to jetlovers for statistics

Health

Well, I'm certainly not getting younger. This year I focused on my weight and did some noticeable progress.

I started year with 95kg and quickly gained previously lost fat resulting in 99kg. Realising that I put myself on the tight diet. In August I managed to bring my weight down to 85kg - that time first time in my life I realised how much fat I was carying around for no reason. Also it was a realisation that I had obesity for decade. Unfortunately I finished year with 88kg which is still out of the red obese zone.

My "tight diet" is very simple - eat as little as it possible, mostly plants, avoid free sugars and snacks as well as red meat. And of course - don't eat anything after 9.30pm. Also, I found it extremely productive to replace one of the meals, normally lunch or dinner with huel - it's a porridge-like drinkable nutritionally complete food. Btw you can get £10 off via my referal link

Foursquare says that I'm on my 111th week streak in the gyms. That means I visit gym at least once a week, every week for more than 2 years now. Gyms aren't much for weight loss - we all know it's probably the least efficient way to put off fat. Gym helps to clear the mind and release the dopamine. My main gym routine mapped:

I use Endomondo exclusively for the walks mapping and treadmill runs and this year it counted 1300km on foot. Normally bar goes up during my travels:

Study & Languages

There was a slight improvement in this area. I started to study Japanese - my wife's mother tongue in the classroom. I'm still very far from ability to have even super basic conversation. Vocaburary, kanji and pretty much everything except of grammar is really hard to nail down.

Unlike previous few years, In 2019 I didn't study Spanish at all. Last trip to Spain demostrated that even I forgotten a lot of basics but I'm still able to order coffee or exchange a few phrases. That was my goal initially when I was starting - to ensure that I'll be able to keep some basic level.

As of my professional developement I was mostly focusing on the existing techinologies I use - kotlin and it's flourishing ecosystem, aws, google cloud, had experience of configuring deployment from the ground up using terraform. I have had a few interesting experiments with kotlinjs and have prepared a talk about it.

Since my wife was learning javascript I dug in into that ecosystem, got better understanding of the reactjs and related technologies.

Work / Career

In 2019 I was consulting two companies:

  • A new spin-off of RBS - Bo Bank where I stated in 2018. Since organisational changes in 2019 I desided to move on
  • VirtualRetail - very ambitious startup with brilliant team where I was bootstrapping the backend counterpart of their system including CI/CD pipelines, devops, system design, product requirements gathering and everything in between.

I heavily failed my last year goal for the public talks - made just 1.5 of 6 planned.

I have had a great pressure I put on myself and guess been living under that strain for whole year. No surprise I burnt out - I simply could not see laptop since mid-December.

"Pet" projects

This year I've got handful of personal projects:

  • PronounceMe - service which generates videos with correct English pronunciation. It has been closed due to changes in YouTube publishing and monetization policies. I've written a few posts with project updates and implementation design grouped under the tag [##pronounceme
  • Resurrected London Bus Stop Alexa Skill after long downtime. It's not meant to make any money - used to serve public
  • Guess City Game database has been rethought and updated. Initial database in the MVP was a complete rubbish and could not possible be used to test an idea.
  • Refreshed number of the projects just to keep them alive - some of them still generating "coffee money"

I feel I'm lacking execution on the product side. My project management skills slowly decay.

New decade has begun

Wish myself to be more mindful in 2020!