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Looking Back At 2005

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2005: memorable, important or boring?

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      02.01.2007 00:45
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      Here's to 2007...

      2006 was a turbulent year for me, so I am going to indulge myself by recording the major events in “Ali’s world”. This is a purely personal record, as frankly, (for a change) I took little notice of “world events”!

      January 2006

      To say the year started badly would be an understatement. We had been expecting to move to Devon in 2006, but our buyer pulled out on Christmas Eve 2005, collapsing the chain. This meant that we faced a dilemma as my husband had left his job in Sussex to start a new one when we moved, but if he took it up now, that would mean living apart, while I continued to try to sell the house and look after two children under the age of four. We quickly decided that that was not practical. However, we needed money coming in from somewhere. I was fortunate enough to grab a contract position and Mr Ali became a househusband. We kept the house on the market for a few weeks, but there was a surprising amount of competition and a lack of any real interest from buyers.

      Part of the reason that we had been keen to move sooner rather than later was to be nearer to my parents in Cornwall, as my father was ill, and January brought with it confirmation of his diagnosis of cancer of the oesophagus – something I definitely couldn’t even spell twelve months ago. He had had a miserable Christmas, being virtually unable to eat, and surviving on “Ensure” shakes. He started on chemotherapy.

      February 2006

      My father returned to hospital for his second round of chemotherapy, to learn that the hospital had messed up the first round. Normally, when you have chemotherapy, you have a one-week course, followed by a three-week gap before the next lot. However, the drugs that are used can cause some loss of hearing. My father was already profoundly deaf, so the consultant had prescribed a different set of drugs; these need to be administered each week for four weeks without a gap. When he attended the chemotherapy clinic, the nurse said “we were surprised when you didn’t turn up for your last three sets of drugs – they are still in the pharmacy”. Clearly, no one in the NHS had heard of that great modern invention, the telephone.

      March 2006

      Dad continued his chemotherapy. We decided to refurbish the exterior of our house, which was looking tired and putting off potential buyers. We spent nearly £10,000 on new fascias, sofits, guttering, porch and windows and doors.

      April 2006

      We visited my parents at Easter, while my father was feeling well. My sister, who lives in the same town, came over to visit. When I saw her, I exclaimed, “I didn’t know you were pregnant!” She denied it, and my parents said they thought she was putting on weight.

      Our neighbours, who we used to get on well with, announced that they were turning their three bedroom house into a six bedroom one – largely via a huge extension one meter away from our house.

      Mr Ali returned to work, as we conceded that a move might not be imminent after all. Elder and younger son went to pre-school and nursery.

      May 2006

      After three rounds of chemotherapy, the doctors were very pleased with my father’s progress. The main tumour had shrunk significantly, and he was happily eating solids again. They told him to come back in three months time.

      My sister dropped the bombshell that she was seven months pregnant by her total-loser boyfriend.

      My parents promptly went on holiday to Greece to relax, and to see old friends. They came home briefly, before going on to their holiday home in Sweden.

      June 2006

      As the end of my six month contract approached, my company asked me to stay on at work. I agreed to continue on a 24 hours per week basis (three days) as I missed the boys.

      Our neighbours and their builders started a campaign of harassment against us after we objected to their extension. This made it hard to leave the house at times (literally, as we had a shared drive, which the builders would block).

      July 2006

      July was eventful.

      My parents rang me to say that my father was feeling unwell, and they were returning from Sweden immediately. On a Thursday evening, I picked them up from Gatwick Airport, as we lived nearby. They had planned to travel onwards to Cornwall on the Saturday, but my father looked very unwell. He refused to go to hospital the next morning, but by the Saturday, when he could barely walk upstairs, we insisted on taking him to A&E. Fighting my own demons and better judgement, I took him to the nearest major A&E, which was at a hospital where I had had a terrible time myself in 2004. I hoped that it had improved. Even I could see that my father was very unwell and gasping for breath. My mother, a State Registered Nurse, suspected pneumonia but they diagnosed asthma, and discharged him with a ventolin inhaler. They said he was fit to fly if he wanted to get home to Cornwall.

      With hindsight, I should have driven them there, but my parents insisted that a flight would be the most comfortable, quick solution.

      On the Monday morning, my father went to his local hospital and was promptly admitted. The hospital staff members were absolutely aghast. He stabilised enough with strong antibiotics, and with my mother to nurse him, to return home for a couple of days, but by the following week was in critical care. I flew down to see him on the Thursday evening, and although he could barely speak, we managed a little conversation.

      The following morning, we were called to the hospital. By now, my dad knew that, if he made it through this, he basically didn’t have too much more to look forward to: he could live another few months, possibly even a year, but without being able to eat, and with an increasing need for nursing care. It was still a shock when he died at lunchtime, but he had clearly decided it was time to go, as he sat up in bed, gesturing us to move away so that he could swing his legs out. He muttered “no-more” and started ripping off his wires before he passed away.

      My sister was past her due date by this point, and I had an eventful few days organising the funeral with my mother and driving my sister to hospital and back again. (Loser-boyfriend had disappeared by this point in time, after my sister * gasp * dared suggest he get a job for the first time in years).

      I think my father would have enjoyed his funeral. It’s a funny thing to say, I know, but there can’t be many crematoriums playing “Hey Mickie” and telling stories of the deceased accidently visiting a solicitor instead of a dentist while on holiday. We held a funeral tea in gorgeous sunshine out in my father’s prized garden.

      My new newphew finally put in an appearance a few days later, on July 23rd.

      August 2006

      We put the house back on the market and almost immediately received an offer for a lot more than we had previously accepted – and importantly, more than £10k more, which meant that the repairs made earlier in the year had been worth it.

      September 2006

      We had a “proud parents” moment as elder son started school. And felt guilty knowing that we would be moving him within his first term.

      October 2006

      We had a well-deserved quiet month, de-cluttering and preparing to move house.

      November 2006

      I celebrated my birthday and my last day at work on the same day. It was the only job that I have been genuinely sad to leave. We moved house two days later. Do not do this if you can avoid it.

      We moved into our rented accommodation. Things started badly on the first night, when we were rained on in bed. They continued downhill, when the gasman called in the second week and promptly condemned and disconnected the gas fire and cooker. The landlady had already pinched the microwave. The seal broke on the dishwasher and flooded the kitchen. The toilet leaked. The landlady’s husband and various assorted mates have had numerous botched attempts at fixing the roof. Which still leaks.

      December 2006

      Strangely enough, we did little unpacking and directed our energies into house-hunting. We found a perfect cottage in a pretty village just before Christmas, but I am hesitant to disclose ANY details until we have the keys! My mother, sister and her three kids came for Christmas but I’m not sure that any of us really enjoyed it or wanted to be with the others. Fortunately, my mother announced that she would be spending next Christmas in Sweden anyway.

      2007

      So, here I sit, looking forward to a better year in 2007!

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        14.02.2006 10:37
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        Enjoy every good moment in life as much as you can

        Each year at midnight on Hogmany (New Years Eve) I always say to myself next year cant get any worse than this year well i remember saying that in 2004 but boy was i so wrong.

        My father in law was diagnosed with cancer in the early part of the year, they operated and thought that they had got rid of it but later in the year it came back and this time it was too late they couldnt do anything else for him and he lost his fight for life in November it devasted the whole family. He was a good strong man who had hardly been ill a day in his life then this hit him we are still numb with shock we still cant believe it that he has gone.

        2005 was also a bad year that my husband was made redundant in January just after we found out about his dad but to us at that time was nothing compared to what his dad was going through but as the months went on it got tougher for us living on one wage until finally a break came in that he got another job but sadly it want to last for long the company he worked for was running out of money and rather than make people redundant they decided to pull my husband in at the end of his three months probation and tell him that his work wasnt up to scratch therefore they would not be keeping him on. We would have understood if his work was bad but in the three months that he worked there he had nothing but compliments. We did try to take legal advice but the remainder of the staff wouldn't come forward to support him as they were in fear of losing their jobs which in all honesty we couldn't blame them.

        My husband became depressed due to this and his fathers illness this year which was another tough obsticle for our family to climb. I had to stay strong for him but inside I was breaking up, I didn't know how long i could continue to be strong for him and his family.


        So that is the horrible part of 2005 was there any good parts at all i wonder well let me think.

        Well in the middle of the year I was surfing the Friends Reunited website and came accross an old girlfriend of my brother's (my brother died 20 years ago) who he had a child with (my nephew) I hadn't seen this nephewe since just before my brother died so imagine how I felt when I managed to track his mum down.

        I met up with her and she said that she would speak to him and let him make up his mind if he wanted to speak with me afterall he had a new dad.

        The good news is that he did want to speak to me and we have met a few times since, so there was at least one good thing in my life to come from 2005.

        So when midnight on 31st December came around again there was no way i was saying anything and I never will again as no one knows what is in store for them and to be honest I dont think I want to see into the future with me I take each day as it comes as after all when you look at all the other disasters that happened in 2005 my problems seem like nothing.

        Look at all the life that was lost in 2005 due to dissasters all over the world.

        One day London is celebrating winning the Olympic bid the next day it is in mourning, who would have thought that day they were celebrating what was in store for them the next day.

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          10.02.2006 11:48
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          Lets get on with 2006.

          When I look back at 2005 I think of some very good times but also some quite bad times so all in all I think 2005 was quite of a neutral year for me and this is why:

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          The Bad:

          The worst thing about the start of last year is that I was stuck in a dead end job and not being appreciated for any of the work I was doing. At the end of January we had a new manager join us which at first I thought would be really good because he was very good looking and because I was on the management staff too I got to spend a lot of time with him. He was a really good guy but then one day another manager caught him committing fraud. This was ridiculous and as much as I liked him we had to report him and especially when we found out he was actually stealing money from us.

          One day I left work and popped into the shop to buy some food and when I went to pay I found out that I had had my twenty pound note stolen out of my bag and the only time this could have happened was at work. Anyway that manager left and then was replaced by another manager who believe it or not was even worse.

          The new manager although I don’t believe he would ever steal from his employees actually had a big hatred for me from the start and I found out why after I had left. What had happened was he was told he would be working with another girl from another shop as they were going to shift me off to another shop. I was a bit put out by this and when they said that they didn’t have a solid reason for transferring me and I could think of reasons for me staying such as I knew how everything worked in my store then they didn’t transfer me. The new manager was put out by this and I found out it was because he had been having very secret meetings with the other girl so they obviously fancied each other.

          So because of their relationship the manager automatically hated me and he took this out on me in a very cruel way. He used to criticize everything I did and he used to yell at me for anything and he also expected me to do overtime every single day so I ended up doing about an extra fifteen hours a week than I needed to do. He also used to swear at me so say he wanted me to tidy up something he would say ‘come on you f*****g c**t do it now’. As you can imagine I left soon after.

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          The Good:

          One of the best things that happened to me this year was that when I left my dead end job I actually stumbled into my current job which was the best thing that I could ever do for my career.

          As some of you may know I work for a scientific recruitment agency and when I first joined I was their first employee. Since that day we have taken on another five people as recruitment consultants and because of my bond with the directors I have been promoted twice. I joined the agency as an office administrator and then was promoted to office manager. I now am still the office manager but have the added title of being PA to the directors so when people join they know I am important to the business.

          This job has given me a lot of pleasure because every bit of work I do is appreciated and I am constantly being praised for work I am doing. I like it because everybody is approachable and if I ever want to put an idea forward everybody listens and considers it. This by far was the greatest thing I did in 2005 as it has set me up with a great job and because of this I feel stable enough to get a house this year.

          Other great things that have happened are that my sister has got accepted into the university that she wanted so as long as she keeps on working hard and gets the grades then she will do well for herself. Also last year I got back in touch with a few friends from school who I hadn’t seen for years and now we regularly go out once a week so it is good to be back in touch with them. I feel basically that finally for the first time after university 2005 has got me settled in life and I am ready for everything that is going to happen in 2006

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          The Memorable:

          Right now I can think of a couple of things that stand out as being memorable from 2005 in my personal life. The first is my boyfriend’s sisters wedding which we had been waiting for ages for. She had it in a great big stately home with the most amazing grounds and the weather was perfect. I remember this because we had such a wonderful day and the whole wedding was perfect.

          The second thing I can remember is another wedding but this time it was my friend from university getting married. Me and my boyfriend didn’t even go to the actual wedding but to the night but the reason I loved it so much was because I got to see all of my university friends who I hadn’t seen for quite a few months. Not only that but there were another few people from university who I hadn’t seen for about a year so we had an amazing night catching up with everyone.

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          Out in the real world:

          Ok so 2005 was not a great time for many people. For one at the start of the year things were still being sorted out with problems due to the Tsunami which killed many and injured even more.

          The next thing to happen that really shook me up was the London bombings in July which were the scariest thing to happen in the UK for a long time in my opinion. I remember sitting at work and my boyfriend ringing me up and telling me what had happened and then offering to come pick me up and take me home so I didn’t have to get the train. I declined but ever since the bombings I have been very wary of strange behaviour from anybody and once I actually got off the train and caught the next one.

          In celeb world we have the split of Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt which shocked everybody and then the mad wedding of Renee Zelwegger and the unlikely pairing of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes fondly known as TomKat.

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          I think that 2005 has been a very mixed year and there have been some very strange happenings. There have been bad points and good points but then you are going to get that with every year that goes by.

          In my life I would have to say that 2005 was very neutral and to me very tiring as it has been my first year of working full time all year. The major thing that 2005 has done for me is to set me up for this year so that hopefully I can get myself a house and get engaged and all will be well. As far as the rest of the world is concerned then I just hope that everybody has learned their mistakes from 2005 and 2006 can be a peaceful year although I doubt this would ever happen.

          Thanks for reading.

          xxx

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