And that’s a wrap

What a year, and what a decade.  As both draw rapidly to an end, my feeling is one of…..shellshock. It has been a tumultuous decade that we have lived through.  Looking back, and on a personal level one can recall event after event of positive, milestone achievements.  From a global perspective, what one remembers is a torrid flood of negative ones.

If you would permit me, I feel a need to touch on a few of them, hopefully vaguely relevant to the existence of this website, doctor.

At the start of the decade, I had been living in Australia for just over a year, and by Easter 2000 I had met a girl, who then became my girlfriend, my fiance by November, and we were married just after Christmas the following year.  We just had our 8th wedding anniversary (and have an almost 3 year old daughter, but I’m getting ahead of myself).

Easter 2000 was also about the last time I used a film camera (SLR), after Kodak totally destroyed all the (Velvia) films I had shot while making a photographic trip down the Great Ocean Road.  The photographic passion took a massive hit, which it has never recovered from, and only around 2005 when I got my digital SLR did I experience a brief resurgence, but even that didn’t last, and now photography has become very much a documentary process for me, rather than an artform.

2001 is pretty infamous on the international stage, something you never get over seeing (and I happened to be watching it live until around 3am), and marks the start of an age of Terrorism (they were around for a lot longer than that, but never had such a global impact to my mind).  There is no need to rehash all the subsequent events here, but they really have shaped the entire decade, and set humanity on its current, and less than desirable path, giving the vocal minority (particularly governments) too much power to choose the destinies of the citizens (the increasing of powers of “The Police State”).  The current rather zealous approach to “Global Warming”, I don’t think would have occurred in the way it is if not for 2001.  The War the world has been involved in started in 2001, and despite name changes has persisted ever since, with no definite signs of an end.  There have been an incredible number of events since – bombs, floods, tsunami, crashes, crisis (financial and otherwise), and although I could summarise a massive list, Wikipedia gives a better list: just use en.wikipedia.org/wiki/200x and substitute the x for the year of interest.

Christmas 2001, when my (now) wife and I were married placed a major building block that resulted in this website, when (we) were given a lathe as a wedding present.  That required I build a bench to mount it on, and I needed a saw to make that bench.  I chose a Triton, and the rest is history!

Throughout the decade, many seemingly unrelated event occurred, which lead to a point on 20 June 2007 when Stu’s Shed was launched. It has been growing ever since, and currently enjoys between 1100 and 1300 visitors daily.  This year, the 1/2 millionth visitor mark was passed, and already another 120,000 visitors have come through the virtual door.

I have no idea what the next year, let alone decade holds.  I can only hope for a steadily increasing presence of Stu’s Shed on the local (and world) stage, and perhaps, just perhaps, it might actually make a little bit of money (I doubt enough to live on, but we can all dream!) Watching my daughter go through the real journey that going from 2 to 12 entails will be a fascinating experience that my wife and I will get great pleasure from.

I sincerely hope that the world finds a greater sense of stability – the chaos of the last decade is not healthy in the long, or short term. But there are no signs of an improvement anytime soon, politically, financially, environmentally.

But looking towards the light for a moment – I hope the last decade has been good for you personally, and the next is incredibly rewarding.  Looking from here to 2020, I wonder just what creations will come out of the shed, how it will change and grow.

I’m not a great one for sticking to resolutions set, so don’t think there is much point trying to set any – I’d like to get a book published, build a workbench (finally), and I’m sure I could create a mega-long, mega-scary and mega-impossible-to-achieve-everything list if I put my mind to it.  Sorry about the ramble!

Happy New Year everyone!

7 Responses

  1. Happy New Year to you too Stu. The last 2 years has seen me battle a serious illness meaning I have had to be off work for most of the period. The good news is that I am now on the mend and managing my condition. The great news is that during this time I have finally had some time to dedicated to my life long interest in woodworking. I can now honestly call it a hobby and am improving all the time. Thanks to sites like yours I have been able to learn, gain insight and opinions into the quality and use of tools and most importantly have lots of fun along the way.

    Looking forward to 2010 and beyond.

  2. Happy New Year to you and your family Stu and to all the Stu’s Shed viewers.
    Thanks for the great website full positive thoughts, tips and ideas, I’ve found some gems amungst them that I use constantly in the shed.

  3. Happy new year to all, mate

    Hope we kick plenty of arse this decade

    Lindz and Jen

  4. Hope you have another great year, Stuart. Your site is a must read everyday, one that is always worth reading. And as a Triton freak, one that brings us more good news. If you were to buy a workbench, then you would have more time to use it.

  5. Happy New Year to you and your family, Stu, and thank you for the Shed, and everything in it. I enjoyed your reflective piece about the decade we all just lived through, and I share your philosophical hope for a better, more humane future. Just goes to show that woodworkers have more than just sawdust between the ears. Congratulations on your personal decade milestones like 1/2mil site visitors; writing for Wood Review; fathering a beautiful daughter, amongst others. I look forward to your book, and if you need a hand with that workbench…! cheers, Gez

  6. Great read Stu. As the father of 3 daughters and the husband to my wife of 21 years (I turned 40 this year, WOW) I wish you the best for a bright and meaningful future.
    I share your concern and viewpoint for our world, and I pray daily for wisdom for our global leaders.
    In the end we only have the capability to change the lives we come in contact with, either in the world or in the home.
    Thank you for your website, it is both informative and inspiring. Here’s to doubling your visitors in 2010. cheers.

  7. Just want to wish you and yours a HNY and let you know the work you put into the website and Shed TV really are appreciated. Thanks.

    Chris in California

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