If you didn’t know by now, we Iranians have been into calendars for over two millennia, so we decided to create our own and despite many other nations we just fancied a solar calendar a lot more than the lunar one. But here’s the thing, the Persian calendar is pretty accurate. In fact the most accurate one out there. Hence why we don’t celebrate new year at midnight. It is calculated by the seconds each year and we might be starting our countdown anytime from daytime to 3 a.m. (We’re weird like that!).
The Persian calendar is no joke. It’s not something formal we bring out once a year to show off the intelligence of our ancestors, it’s our official calendar and the one we use on a daily basis and we’re very much proud of it. As you can tell we like to brag about it a lot too. 😉
Come to Iran during the Western new year and there’s really not much happening, come at Nowruz and we are going nuts. Our traditions for the most important occasion of the year are vast and varied, but that’s a story for another day. Today is my late turn on mentioning my new year resolutions. Strange as it might sound, I’ve actually never done this before! My resolutions would always start with summer when I was free from school or Uni. But now that both of those are ticked of my life, I’m ready to start things fresh with the new year and leave the summers when I had nothing to do to the dreams… . Sigh!
So let’s get right into it, shall we?
#1 More domestic travel
I’m guilty of not having traveled that much in my country. Let’s face it. It’s big and we used to spend every holiday at Grandpa’s villa which is located in Mazandaran Province right between the mountains and the caspian sea. It was alright back then when I didn’t really care much about anything apart from being with my cousins, but as I grew older and my passion for travel grew with it, I thought I should make up for the past. We have obviously been to the main touristy cities but now that Iran is being discovered a lot more even by us Iranians we’ve realized we’ve been missing out on a lot!
Also let’s not forget that making money in Iranian currency means your bank account is much more in favour of domestic travel than International. Except if you’re traveling during Nowruz season which prices for a few days stay at any major Iranian city can easily rise above a week of luxury in Turkey, Dubai or basically any other neighbouring country. But apart from that, if you learn to travel cheap in Iran, it’s quite possible without going bankrupt.
So this year I will be more than happy to help the tourism industry of my own country and wander a little more the land I call home.
#2 Make a difference.
The past year has been good. I’ve done a lot for myself. I graduated from Uni and got the job I’ve always wanted – Graphic Designer focused on Web and Application design. I started learning how to sew (I know! totally random! Never thought I’d be doing it) then I pursued a dream and started taking a course in International tour leading which can lead me into becoming an official tour guide (if I pass the test).
But life should not be always about me. While the combination of my work, day to day life and travels satisfy me pretty much, I’ve realized I’m missing that feeling of satisfaction that drives from having made a direct change in someone else’s life. So probably in the second half of this year I’ll be volunteering to do something for charity. Probably for kids, but I’m still doing my research.
#3 Read more!
Almost all surveys suggest that we Iranians don’t read enough and I’m disgracefully one of them. I’m ashamed to admit that the number of non-school-related books I’ve read in the past year don’t even outnumber my fingers. But that’s about to change and I’m already on it. Since my tour leading course is forcing me to study a lot of history and I’m finding myself quite fascinated by it, I’ve started with a book that’s been gathering dust on my book shelf for years – Cleopatra by Michael Grant. It’s more of a history book than a novel which makes me appreciate it even more and I’m finding it hard to put it down.
#4 Try new dishes
I’m fussy when it comes to trying out food that are probably not familiar with my taste. It runs in the family. I actually think it might be an Iranian thing as well. I fear not liking a certain dish so much that I don’t even dare to try. While I have traveled and lived abroad for quite a long time there’s only so much I can say about the cuisine of each country. This is not even limited to Iranian food. It’s actually as deep as not trying local dishes from other cities in my own country.
But from now on I won’t be leaving any place without trying out some local dishes and that has already begun.
#5 Learn to cook
So I’m no food connoisseur. Now that you know that you should also know that I suck at cooking. It doesn’t get worse! I just never liked cooking or even food that much. I hate the waiting and forgetting and having to burn an hour of work. But instagram and food photography has been getting me into enjoying my food a little more. Even if it’s for the sake of taking a good shot of it.
I’ve actually read that taking pictures of your food is a great way to improve your cooking skills. So there’s a lot of foodie pictures coming your way and I’m counting on your support. 😉
#6 Get out of your comfort zone!
I will be trying out a lot of new stuff this year. New food, new books, new sports and new hobbies. Routine is what hits me the hardest in life and giving a go at something new is the way I escape it every single time.
#7 Hit the gym more often
I’ve always thought I’m lucky that I never gain that extra weight. I’ve also always felt sorry for those who had to be under strict diets because as much as I’m not into food, I eat what I love and there’s no stopping to that! As I get older things seem to be changing. Having to do most of my work from the comfort of my laptop is easily getting me out of shape and it’s freaking me out. Since I can’t get myself into eating less, getting into the gym is my way to go. I’m also going to try to gradually turn my diet into a more healthy one.
#8 Start a new language or at least catch up on the ones I know!
I’ve been very passionate about languages since at a very young age and I’m proud to think I can hold a decent conversation in 3 languages other than my mother tongue (English, Spanish and Portuguese). But I have always wanted to learn French and somehow it’s been wiped out of the way until now. I’m not sure if I’ll be starting it this year but I know I don’t want to die without knowing French.
Apart from that, since I’m back home and far away from hearing or speaking any Portuguese or Spanish, I must find a way to keep those treasures that I’ve worked so hard to gain.
#9 Blog more often
The amount of classes I take plus a part-time job doesn’t leave me much time to blog. If you’re a blogger you’ll now that posting each one of these posts takes a hell of a time. But this it my private place and whatever I do or write here, I do with my heart and soul. I’m optimistic about where it’s going to take me but I know I have to be consistent.
#10 Improve my photography skills
This year I splurged on a camera. I upgraded from a Sony A-200 to a Canon 70D which I’m extremely happy about. I love photography and while experience has really shown improvement in my photos I should take it to another level and learn the more professional stuff so I can splurge on lenses instead. 😀
And the most crucial resolution of my year is travel, travel and travel.
I’ll be coming back to this post next year to see how I’m holding on. Let’s hope things go well… 😉