My 2011 New Year resolutions

24 Dec

With Santa and his cronies being around the corner and the first day 2011 just a week or so away, it is time for me to draw up my list of new year resolutions. I must tell you that never do this, to be very honest. I hate new year resolutions because well, I never tend to stick to them. Half way through the first week I am basically back to square one. But since 2010 was a bit of a nightmare year and I want 2011 to kick ass, I tought: why the hell not? At least these are resolutions that are doable.

1) I will not allow a cockroach to fracture my hand – Earlier this year, I fractured my hand because of my fear for cockroaches. Now that is something that will not happen again. Ever-ever.

2) I will not ditch someone via sms / facebook / skype / pigeons / smoke signals – My Significant Other a while back felt it was necessary to let me know that ‘we’ are no longer ‘we’ – via the sms. I knew it was coming, sort of, so I am very much able to deal with the fact that from now on I will be falling asleep and waking up on my own. Let’s say that I have done it before and that I have become shareholder in the Global Super Broken Heart Super Glue Distributors.

Yes, there is a ‘but’ coming. The fact that this had to be done via the sms, was a gynormous knock below the belt. Anyway, to keep a long story short: If I ever end up with someone again and I decide that this particular person is for what ever reason not my match, I promise to act like a grow-up and not use the buttons of my Blackberry to let him know about my decision. I will suck it up, grow some balls and face that person (and the music that comes with it).

3) I will not have my Macbook stolen ever again – During a conference organised by the Economist at Cape Town’s Westin Grand Hotel, my Macbook was stolen. That was one day before my ex Significant Other broke up with me for the second time, by the way (this is the third time). This will not happen again, mark my lips. I have a new machine now which I have equipped it with a GPS tracker. I have also bought a cable with which I can tie computer a the conference table.

4) I will continue to cherish my friends – My friends are my family, and are the corner stones of my soul and sanity. I love you guys to bits, and thanks a gazillion for all the support, laughs, hangovers, glasses of wine, smiles, giggles and hugs over the past year. You guys are simply the best and you are the reason I am still in South Africa. It is because of you guys I feel I am not a foreigner, but a person who truly belongs in this country.  There are plenty of more things I would like to say to you, my dear friends, but I rather do it in person instead of via some hitech communication method.

5) I will kick ass BIG TIME as a (freelance) journalist & photographer – Apart from the heaps of personal bulls shit 2010 has given me, work-wise the past 360-something days were extremely good.  Since I started my career as a journalist in 2002, I have published stuff in over 30 different publications worldwide. Currently, I have quite a few prestigious clients under my wings. Without being arrogant: I am really proud of that and therefore I am determined to kick some more ass in 2011.

6) I will not have hair highlights done EVER again – Yesterday, a few hours before the ex Significant Other sent me ‘the’ sms, I decided to have some highlights done. Subtle highlights. You know, as in ‘sun kissed hair’. Clearly the chick in charge of my ‘do’ was deaf or stupid or stubborn, or maybe she simply did not understand what the word ‘subtle’ meant. What ever the case was: my reflexion on the mirror almost made my choke on my tea. I looked like a freaking zebra, with Marilyn Monroe blonde streaks adorning my chocolate-brown hair. Like someone dropped a bucket of ivory paint over my locks. Luckily she managed to fix things without shaving my hair off.

7 ) I will visit my family in The Netherlands – I have not been in my country of birth since June 2009 and that has to change. I miss my 84-year old granny and my bestest and oldest friend José and my folks a lot. So, hopefully, I will catch a plane in March to go see them. Do not get me wrong: I love South Africa. But sometimes living abroad is damn hard, simply because you have two worlds to think of and not just one.

8) I will write my grandfather’s story – My grandfather was an amazing man. His story of how he was arrested by the Germans during World War 2, sent off to Berlin, escaped from there, was rearrested, and sent to a salt mine in Northern Germany as a prisoner of war. There he met a Russian girl called Maria, who lived at a women;s concentration camp. It was an innocent love, but it went deep. When the Germans realised they were about to lose the war, they put Maria and other women in army trucks and drove them into the river. Most of them died. He managed to escape and walked all the way back to The Netherlands. He ended up marrying the girl next door (litterally), my beloved 84-year old Grandmother. His story needs to be written down. Period.


Posted by on December 24, 2010 in The World of Mir


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5 responses to “My 2011 New Year resolutions

  1. jack

    December 24, 2010 at 10:15 am

    Hey Miriam,
    Nederlanders in de vreemde zoeken altijd een beetje nederlandse lucht! Ben hier al 25 jaar, zou niet terug willen, maar af en toe een beetje “thuislucht” blijft roepen. Ik begrijp je “twee werelden” helemaal.

    Sounds like you had a rough year, hope next year will be better! Kick-ass, and all that. As for your boyfriend’s sms, sounds like a serious lack of courage – you need better than that!

    Make christmas the start of your coolest year yet in ons nieuwe vaderland! And your grandfather’s story sounds amazing – hope you will share it when it’s written up!

    Warme groeten uit johannesburg


    • Miriam Mannak

      December 24, 2010 at 10:22 am

      Hey Jack,
      Thanks for the comment 🙂 Op zich heb ik helemaal niet zo’n band met Nederland, simpelweg omdat ik ook nog eens in het buitenland ben opgegroeid. Maar toch blijft de situatie van ‘twee werelden’ een feit. Maar ‘thuis’ is NL al lang niet meer. Die titel is voor Kaapstad 🙂
      Yeah, it was a rough year indeed, but determined to make 2011 into an unforgettable one. Not going to let anyone screw up the next 365-odd days. I will be in Nature’s valley with great friends til the 9th of Jan so I think it will be the start of something fantastic.
      Again, thanks for the message. I do not know you, but it means a lot.
      Natte groeten vanuit Kaapstad (het regent nu namelijk – ha ha)

  2. Mark Goodwin

    December 25, 2010 at 5:40 pm

    Hey Miriam
    I am probably old enough to be you father and your story makes me want to reach out to you as I would one of my children. It’s the old Paternal instinct yer know? First I want to find your ex-boyfriend and teach him some manners. I wouldn’t do it myself, because I wasn’t built that way. I was built as a musician and creative person, but I have made a few influential friends over the years, from Vegas to London. It wouldn’t take too much for someone to pay him a visit. The SOB! The only saving grace as I see it is that now he has shown his true hand, you can see that your life is going to be a better place without him in it. And take it from me (cos I’m old) the saying that there is someone out there for each of us, is absolutely true, and you will find yours, but not until the Great Unknown thinks you are ready. I think your Grandparents proved that rule.
    Cockroaches aren’t they just the ugliest bustards? I first came into contact with them when I was a young man in Wales and I had to work through the night in a very old Cinema in Bristol. I’ve hated them ever since. Not sure if you got see the TV thing from the UK called, “I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here”. Filmed in the jungle somewhere in Australia. Celebs have to do disgusting things, like having 1000’s of cockroaches dumped on them, and even having to eat them. Funny thing is, the more you watch it the more you start to feel sorry for the cockroach!!
    So, this is Christmas day in snow covered Wales, my wife of 42 years is asleep in the bedroom, I am in my study in the next bedroom. The Christmas dinner is cooked and we will eat it together in her bed. We met when I was a successful musician and she was one of the select few of Dancers in London. She was resident at the London Palladium and did all the UK TV shows. She was the youngest girl chosen to go to the Royal Ballet school at age 11. She has brought up three gorgeous sons, all of whom have flown the nest now. One is a successful Music Producer and DJ, one is the manager of the Design Studio of one of the worlds biggest book publishers and the eldest is working as a Kitchen Fitter and running a small recording studio. She, unfortunately, was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 15 years ago. She is classed as Secondary Progressive and is now confined to her bed. Leg are almost completely finished, probably the worst thing one could do to a gifted dancer!
    But, I love her very much, I am her main Carer although we get some help, and I am fortunate enough to be able work from home.
    Whoops! Sorry Miriam, I really didn’t intend to ramble on. I hope you have a good Christmas with some real friends, and as much as one should think about the eco-structure of this planet, can I suggest you treat yourself in the New Year to some heavy duty Cockroach Killer!?

  3. Miriam Mannak

    December 26, 2010 at 11:55 am

    Hey Mark,
    You have no idea how much I was touched by your comment on the above bog post. I was pretty much moved to tears as it is not often a total stranger reaches out to you when you need it the most. In the end my Christmas was one of the best I had, thanks to my great friends. Thanks for, in our own way, lending me a shoulder. I understand the fact that it is over as it was on the cards and due to the fact that people simply break up. I am left with quite a few questions (eg “was it real to start with?” and “did person X mean what ever he said just 5 days prior he broke up, as in that he loved me to death etc”), but I will have to build a bridge and get over it. In the end of the day, his action 9sending me an sms and not the break up) ays more about him than about me.
    Enough about me. I was moved to the core and to tears by your story, and about your wife’s condition. It must be incredibly hard for the both of you. She is lucky having you around. I think many people would rather take a long walk instead of sticking around when the going gets tough. I hope you both had a fantastic christmas, filled with love and smiles and good times. You wife sounds like a marvelous and incredibly interesting person. And so do you 🙂
    Wishing a very happy Boxing Day. Let’s stay in touch.
    Warm regards from Cape Town.


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