Happy New Year for 2017

By on December 31, 2016

I’m sitting here at home, reflecting on 2016,  jotting down some resolutions and goals for 2017 and I wanted to wish all of my friends the very best for the year ahead.

2016 has been a wild ride. I released two more books, spent the winter on a self imposed exile in country South Australia, passed a couple of personal milestones, lost a couple of aged friends, met so many wonderful people.

I’m so grateful for all that life has given me, but when it’s all said and done, the most wonderful gift of all is the gift of friendship and humanity. I am so lucky to have met so many people in different places, whether it be physically, in China, here at home in Sydney, or even in sleepy Naracoorte, my home in the country, or in the virtual world, be it Facebook or even here. Life for me is just an opportunity to meet great people.

I didn’t get the chance to return to China in 2016. We try to get there annually but while Shuk was able, I couldn’t squeeze it in. However, one of my goals for 2017 is to return to the village. And stay a while.

Baba turns 85 years old and there is to be another celebration, just as we did on his 80th birthday. It will be held in the village and I presume he will be self catering again… which means the town hall kitchen will be cleared and I can do some more exploration.

I always said that I wanted to actually stay in the village, live there for a while as the locals do. Well, as local as an Aussie can manage in the middle of China… Shuk has always resisted but I’ve managed to break down that great wall and this time we will stay in the village in the old house with the wok on the wooden stove, no refrigeration and no toilet. What could possibly go wrong?!

Along with the usual resolutions… work harder, lose a few kilos, exercise more… is the resolution to spend some quality time in primitive conditions in Niu Lu Tao, Shuk’s village. I imagine if I am there long enough the exercise and weight goals might take care of themselves… so the big governing goal for 2017: return to the village!

I hope you and your family have a wonderful celebration for New Year and that 2017 is everything it can be and more.




  1. Reply

    Rachael Mills

    January 14, 2017

    Good for you Rob, I hope you have a wonderful and interesting stay in the village, I also have some trips planned for 2017, I will be going to some places in South America.

  2. Reply


    January 10, 2017

    New Years post! I always enjoy reading these…New Years offers such a promising blank slate. I love your perspective on life — people and experiences are so much more important than material things. I hope you make it back to the village this year. 🙂

    • Rob Harvey

      Rob Harvey

      January 10, 2017

      Thanks Jen. I’m packing my bags already!

  3. Reply


    January 3, 2017

    Happy new year Rob! Hopefully the new year means a new book? Or two?

    • Rob Harvey

      Rob Harvey

      January 10, 2017

      You too Alan. At least one… 🙂

  4. Reply


    January 2, 2017

    Happy New Year Rob!

    • Rob Harvey

      Rob Harvey

      January 2, 2017

      Thanks Warren! Same to you.



I quit my marketing job 20 years ago to become a writer, only I ended up writing html instead of words. Now I'm just writing words. I have a passion for China, through my partner Shuk, a passion for cooking and a passion for history. Oh, and a keen eye for the absurd! Have some fun on these pages and I look forward to your feedback. Rob.

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