Let me start by giving a big shout out to anyone who tried to launch a business or pursue a project in 2021. Overall, it was a tough year, but it didn’t stop the dreamers and go-getters from conceiving and executing new ideas. “A passion project never feels like work,” is a phrase that stuck with me following my first interview this year with Melanie Gontier, a breast cancer survivor and founder of the My Everyday Lingerie brand. Getting a sneak peek into the passion projects of a younger generation of FJSL laureates and EHTL student chefs, or learning of the tenacity and ambitions of different business owners in Luxembourg, despite the challenges of the pandemic, stand out.
My top team reads
New discoveries to explore again
The CK Sportcenter in Kockelscheuer was a great find this year. I must also admit that Brazilian cuisine somehow made it to the top of my restaurant visits. In particular, the Picanha Plaza restaurant and Batucada--located not far from the F.D. Roosevelt stop--turned me into a regular, thanks to their delicious menu and warm servers.
CovidCheck re-enabled human touch
Observing social distance and other covid regulations remained the order of the day for most social and cultural events. However, it was a sigh of relief to be able to enjoy the cozy interiors of restaurants and bars again, and to meet with friends, colleagues and loved ones outside of our homes.
But still an emotional roller-coaster
Let’s be real. With over 5.3 million covid-related deaths recorded since the start of the pandemic globally, grief is a real emotion that defined the year. And as the world heals in 2022, we can only hope that those who have lost people within their personal circle, especially due to covid-related complications, learn to cope with a “new normal” that will never be the same. The weather also had some surprises, but the solidarity and support shown to those affected by the July floods will continue to warm hearts.
This was probably a “ha-ha” moment that we shouldn’t sweep under the carpet. But there were at least two petitions calling for the Luxembourg nationality without having to pass a Luxembourgish language test. Just throwing that in there.
Anyways, it was good to see a return of festivities in the grand duchy, especially in the latter half of the year. We had Fun um Glacis, and asides the dramatic turn of events resulting from protests in the Christmas markets, I felt the convivial spirit of Christmas again on the streets and market queues. Something I do not take for granted.
And across the world
Events in the United States got the world’s attention at several points. But the swearing in of the first female vice-president, Kamala Harris, echoed on my social media feeds for a while. The Cop26 summit was another highlight this year. But as we approach the new year, I would love to see more real efforts and less conversations to ensure a more equitable distribution of vaccines and promoting sustainable practices across various industries.
My best wishes as you celebrate the new year.