2019, it’s a wrap

Suzie Eisfelder

Seeing as this is my last post for 2019 I decided to do what everyone has been doing and write a summary of the year. For a change I’m going with the flow.

It’s been a big year for me. This year was The Seventh Australian Discworld Convention. It was big for me as I was heading the committee. I’ve had a lot of people tell me how much they enjoyed themselves and I appreciate them telling me. A few weeks later I finished my degree. I have since graduated and now have my graduation certificate on my wall. I’m probably not going back to study next year, I have been offered a chance to study Honours but I’ve returned to writing my book and I’m also aware of all the things I’ve been putting aside while I study. I’m thinking that studying is not really conducive to getting these things done.

After a not-too-brief trip to America we then prepared for a very brief trip to Shanghai. America was good. You might have read my writings about all the bookshops and Libraries we visited. We also went on a boat trip at Niagara Falls. I came back having had Niagara Falls, Lake Ontario and the Pacific Ocean gush through the hole in my shoe. I now have new shoes.

Shanghai was amazing. It was a unique opportunity. We were invited to visit by the Jewish Refugee Museum of Shanghai. They are displaying many photos taken by my father-in-law when he lived there during and following WWII. We were treated to a symposium explaining the what and why of the museum for the present and potential future. We were able to take a guided tour of both the museum and also Shanghai. We were able to see many of the same buildings he photographed. We took the same photos. There are few differences. Some of the buildings his parents were in have since been demolished and larger buildings are in the process of being built. Some of them the only difference is air conditioning and cables. The current inhabitants are still cooking outside in the same way as they have for the seventy plus years. It was fascinating.

I have finally moved into a room of my own. Still in the same house, I’ve just pinched someone else’s bedroom. Ignore the fact that she moved out four years ago, I’ve now made it mine. I have a desk that is almost the right height for me, it’s still a little high so I have to figure that out. It is feeling like an office. I’m not finding any more time to read but I’m getting through the hard books, the ones that I’ve been putting off as my brain was elsewhere.

I’ve also gone back to writing the history of my synagogue. I started it four years ago by interviewing some of our older generations. A good thing I started there, some of those people have since died and I’ll never be able to ask them the other questions I’ve thought of since the last time we spoke. I’m working hard on more research and I’ve actually started writing. Some of what I’ve written will need tweaking as my research yields more information, but that’s okay. Knowing that I have 3,000 words already is making me feel a little less worried about finishing. Now that I’ve started I know I’ll finish.

I attended an author Q&A at the Nunawading library. The author was Heather Morris and her book is The Tattooist of Auschwitz. It felt really good to go up to her afterwards and point out my name in the Acknowledgements. She stood up and gave me a hug to thank me for backing her book. Without crowdfunding there are many projects that wouldn’t finish. I’m always exceedingly proud to receive my copy of anything I’ve backed in crowdfunding. Whether it’s dice, books, music, movies or anything else, it makes me feel good when I’ve helped someone else bring their project to fruition.

What I don’t know is what 2020 will bring me. I doubt I’ll finish writing the book as there is far too much research to do still. I’m sure I’ll read more books than I have this year. I will continue sorting personal papers and throwing them out. Will I get back to reading the ebooks people send me? I really don’t know, I hope so.

What I’d like you all to do is to have a safe year for 2020.

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