Posts tagged ‘new years’

Year 2005 in Review

As the year draws to an end, it is normal to reflect back on what has happened in your life in the past year and how that may effect the year to come.

I must say that 2005 was a very eventful year for me with lots of ups and downs but thankfully mostly ups…

The one think I would say that has marked my year the most is that my family’s bond and my relationship with my wife is much stronger now than it ever was in the past. We ended the last year a bit shaky but I am glad to report that we are entering 2006 ironclad and ready for anything!

I have done a lot of traveling this year for both private and business. The first half of the year was spent commuting between China and the UK to visit with my family, do some business in London with wine competitions as well as trade shows at the London International Wine Fair, which is the world’s largest wine event. Clare and I also enjoyed a short but very nice side trip to France.

There was also some travel to Canada to do some wine start-up consulting jobs in Alberta and British Columbia. (www.forbiddenfruitwines.com and http://www.fieldstonefruitwines.com) I am glad to say that the wineries are doing well and the wines are well accepted.

My wife then came to China for a visit and we visited the Great Wall, Forbidden City, Shanghai and Hong Kong. She enjoyed it and this opened up the way for her to take the plunge and accept to move to China.

Midway through the year we were approached by China’s fifth largest winery who basically gave us an offer we could not refuse. We wound down the old company in Tianjin and a new post was created. I became the head winemaker at Tonghua Winery were I am now. I am developing new wines for the winery and generally increasing the quality of the existing wines. I am currently in charge of production for 20,000,000 litres of wine.

The month of August was an eventful one! This was the month I went back to the UK to move my family to China. It was an exciting and sad month all at the same time as it involved the excitement of a new life together in Asia as well as saying goodbye to an old life in England. We have amazing friends in England and we will be back to live there once our 5 years are completed. We love the buzz and excitement of England as well as the accessibility of the countryside and close proximity of other European countries.

Clare was able to get a good job teaching English in a local middle school. She enjoys teaching and may have found a new calling from this. She is now thinking of eventually starting her own school and be able to make a lot more money at this. The kids have had a harder time to adapt to life here and learning a new culture and language, this was truer for Emma than for Gabby or Bella. They are now understanding and speaking Chinese a lot more and by this summer, they should be fluent in Chinese. This is a great advantage and opportunity for them.

My sister then came to visit us in the fall. It was great to see her and I think she got the Asia bug and wants to move here. It will be great to have her and her family here!

A business trip to Argentina and Chile in late November was a very interesting and opened up many opportunities. South America is a beautiful continent and I cannot wait to go back there.

Life is settling down to a bit of a routine, I need that. I am trying to live more for the moment, saving money for the future and really enjoy watching my kids grow. We are making new friends and discovering the local surroundings.

In the year to come, I plan on being more disciplined in learning Chinese, keeping in touch more with friends that are far away and being a bit more easy going.

If anyone out there is reading….Happy New Year!

December 31, 2005 at 6:57 am Leave a comment


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Lover, father, global winemaking consultant, winemaker/exporter, hobby farmer, author and modern-day nomad...

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