2014 is about to end and I was sitting here thinking about what happened for me in 2014. The first thing that comes to my mind is all the travel that I did for work. I travelled a lot. I might have been away from home more than I was at home. If not, it sure felt like it. I spent a great bit of time in Las Vegas this year, but I also got to experience Bethlehem (Pennsylvania), Singapore, Macao, and Hong Kong.

When I think about the travel, I think about all the time I was away from home for work and that makes me sad. Once I get through the sadness, I realize that I had some amazing experiences this year. I met some new friends and had some really good times. It all started with a security incident in February. Once I got the call, I put together a team and we were off to Pennsylvania.

From Pennsylvania, I ended up in Las Vegas, but I still made sure that I had time for things that were important to me. The Men’s NCAA Basketball Tournament was in Buffalo this year and I had tickets. To make work and the tournament work, I took the red eye back from Las Vegas on Wednesday night. I walked in the door at home at 8am, said good morning and good bye to my daughter as she walked out the door for school. I then showered, and was out the door at 8:30am to go to the grocery store. I picked up some food for the trip, and then off to my friend’s. I met my friend at 9am and he drove us to Buffalo. It was a great day of basketball!

We repeated the trip two days later, without the red eye flight. Again, more great basketball. Neither of us thought in watching Connecticut play that weekend that they would continue on to become the NCAA Champion for 2014, but we got to see them start their run live!

Most of my travel to Las Vegas was a week at a time, and that made the travel bearable. But, there came a time, where I had to spend three weeks in Las Vegas during the summer. My wife had suggested that I bring her and my daughter down for a weekend. I thought that was a bad idea and suggested that they come on separate weekends. I think that worked out great! I did things with my daughter that my wife would not like and things with my wife that my daughter would not like and instead of having one ok weekend, I had two great weekends!

Purdue Homecoming was in September and I was supposed to go with my daughter, but she ended up in an outdoor education class, which had a camping trip on homecoming weekend. So, she could not go and since she could not go, I almost cancelled my trip. Instead, I decided to do something different. I emailed a friend I had not seen in almost 25 years and asked what he was doing on Thursday. He was a bit confused and asked why? I said, I was going to homecoming and would leave a day early to visit him. It was a great visit. We spent the entire evening catching up on each others lives and that was just the start of the weekend!

When I arrived at Purdue, I stayed with some dear friends. It was good to see them and spend time with them. We watched the local high school on Friday night and Purdue on Saturday. It was too bad that neither team won, but it was special just to spend the time with my good friends. We even had some time to play chicken feet!

In thinking about my new friends, on one weekend that I was spending in Las Vegas by myself, I emailed a new friend and asked, “What do locals do on the weekend?” and he said there was a wine tasting that weekend. Well, $22 later and I was at the wine tasting enjoying lots of different types of wine with my new friends. I am so grateful that they knew wine, because they introduced me to some amazing wines!

My stepson got married this year, which meant a party in Ontario and a wedding in Calgary. They were both enjoyable nights. At both events, I got to get together with a lot of old friends and meet some new ones. It was also great to see the friends my stepson had grownup with and how they are becoming young men with their families.

And with all the travel in 2014, I did manage to publish my first book! As the travel was starting in 2014, I was just about finishing the writing of the book. It took me several more months to get the order, the cover, the editing, and the formatting before I finally published in September. I am amazed with all the people who have commented about the book, especially when I meet somebody in a remote location.

There are so many more experiences that I had in 2014 that it is hard to remember all of them at this time. Some of the others that come to mind are Victoria Day in Myrtle Beach, getting picked up in Macao, US Thanksgiving in Las Vegas, my trip to Los Angeles, the infinity pool in Singapore, the weekly Las Vegas pool pictures, and there are more. In thinking about these experiences, I can only wonder what 2015 will have in store for me. All I can say is bring on 2015!