Sunday, December 29, 2013

A year that was...

Looking back at the year that was, 2013, it was pretty good which is why I suppose I can't understand why so many are wishing it away. Yes, for most of them it must have been a pretty horrible year especially if you're a Western Province supporter hence they're wanting to start off 2014 in a fresh mindset knowing that it is a brand new year. That's the thing though, its all in the mindset, at the end of the day it is you and how you react, how you control your mindset that can change the course of how things happen. Why does one have to wait for the turn of the year when you can do it now? Well, that's my two cents on the matter, I'm no motivational speaker neither do I want to be a preacher but that is how I see things from my perspective. 

For me the year kicked off to a tragic start, many heard about the sudden death of South African model Reeva Steenkamp. It made shock waves in the news and media all over the world but for me and many of her close friends it was for all the wrong reasons as the attention was only focused on the person who committed the crime and not on the beautiful soul that was Reeva. Not many know this but she inspired me to put more effort into this blog, she was just meant to be another model I featured on here but instead of just being that, she got me to take this blog more seriously as she corresponded via email, sharing ideas, suggestions and other things I can do to enhance viewer ship on here. So from the success I've had with this blog, I owe a lot of it to her. Thank you Reevs.

For my online presence, the years keep on getting better as I was fortunate enough to be invited to some amazing events. Definitely a highlight for me was the BMW Electro Mobility Summit where I was flown to George to partake in a days discussion with others in the industry on the future of the motor vehicle as well as see and drive future products from the BMW stable, this in turn gave birth to a new feature on the blog, the Bucket Seat which I must thank you guys out there for keeping the views coming is as its turning out to be one of the popular ones on here. We're looking at expanding the brands in the new year so keep a look out for them!

Other major events included Microsoft TechEd Africa 2013, going in as a novice and not knowing too much about system development, it was a tad bit intimidating but after spending a week learning and meeting people it was a real eye opener into the industry and to see what Microsoft has up its sleeves for the future makes me wanting to attend next years TechEd as well! Be sure to check out the other new segment that launched as a result of this, Bucket Tech, where we and with the help of some guest writers will be reviewing the latest gadgets that are on the market.

This year also saw me make my stage d├ębut as I was invited to be part of a bloggers panel at the first ever Durban Digital Day. The turnout was fantastic and my time on stage was nerve wrecking to say the least but again, very fortunate and privileged to be given the opportunity and to be recognised as one of the Durban based bloggers to be looked to.

Now I for one would tell you right away that I am not very active, sure I go to the gym 2 times a week, maybe 3 though  I'm a far stretch from being an athlete but when Mr Price Sport came knocking on my door asking me to participate in their inaugural Blog Olympics, I couldn't turn the offer down. Spending the day, hanging around with some of the best in the local online world was a blast and even though I was totally useless in most off the challenges which probably caused my team to come last, I never regret taking part.  

For me working with brands is important and as much as there is many to chose from, I can't work with them all, for one there is very little time to juggle my paying job with this part time hobby. Also I feel that I need to give whomever I work with the respect and time they deserve, hence I've been picky with ones I have chosen and more importantly I chose them because I genuinely like them and like working with them. One of the major ones being Tsogo Sun, despite them being one of the largest hotel groups in Southern Africa, their on line presence is second to none, with the team being on the ball to deal with PR matters. I have visited 5 of their establishments this year and I can honestly say that my experiences at all of them were brilliant. I look forward to keeping this partnership in the years ahead and also bring you reviews on the hotels I've stayed at.

Whats a year without parties? From the most recent @iLuvDBN launch party to seeing the number 1 DJ in the world, there's been tons of them but by far the most memorable one was the Red Hot Chili Peppers concert in Cape Town which involved a pain staking but fun road trip with mates from Durban to Cape Town. It tested all of our patience but at the same time gave us time to bond.... well mostly annoy each other but it was an unforgettable trip and one for the record books.

As the year started off on a sad note, it also ended on a sad note with the passing of former President Nelson Mandela. Like I said in my post about him, we must learn from him and practice what he has taught us, be able to forgive and move on because most of the time it is you who has to be the bigger person and most importantly be thankful for everyday that you live and don't wish them away. It's been a great year for me despite the losses and obstacles but without them life would just be boring. Make the most of it and don't wait for tomorrow to make the change, do it now. 

Have a safe New Years Eve and hope 2014 brings everyone much joy and happiness. 

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