2022 – A Review

2022 – A Review

Guess what I got for Christmas this year… Covid! Having successfully dodged the dreaded virus for two and a half years, it finally caught up with me in August this year for the first time. Now, I’ve got it again. I tested positive on Christmas Day. Not fun!

What has been fun? Well…


Only one cancelled/postponed show for me this year. I originally should have seen Kiefer Sutherland in January, but the tour got moved to the autumn due to rising covid levels. November came, but just a few days before I was due to see Kiefer in Manchester he postponed the last 3 gigs of the tour. I still had a great time in Manchester, but I’m eagerly awaiting the revised tour dates.

When Gary Barlow announced his stage show ‘A Different Stage’ about his life, I immediately booked to see it in Liverpool (front row seat, no less!) in March. It was fantastic! Through storytelling and a bit of music, it was very honest, moving and hilarious. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house! It was well worth seeing more than once, so a friend and I went to see it again in Wolverhampton in November.

On a return visit to Liverpool, a friend and I saw Bryan Adams in concert for his ‘So Happy It Hurts’ tour. We’d been meaning to see him for years and it was well worth the wait. Despite being in his 60s, he still puts on a brilliant show!

My view of the Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert at Wembley
The Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert at Wembley – 3rd September 2022.

Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins sadly passed away in March, so when a tribute concert was announced for September, I just knew I had to go. Wembley Stadium in London hosted one heck of a lineup – from Foo Fighters themselves, along with Taylor’s son Shane, to Liam Gallagher, Metallica’s Lars Ulrich and AC/DC’s Brian Johnson, Mark Ronson and Dave Grohl’s daughter Violet, The Darkness’ Justin Hawkins, Queen’s Bryan May and Roger Taylor, Nile Rodgers, The Pretenders, Paul McCartney, Sam Ryder and more. It was amazing and such a fitting tribute to Taylor.

Back to the Future - The Musical - September 2022.
Back to the Future – The Musical – September 2022.

While I was down in London, I also saw Back to the Future – The Musical in the West End. What a show! I had initially wondered if it would live up to the films, especially as they weren’t musicals, but they did an excellent job. I would definitely go and see it again!

Another concert I went to was Robbie Williams in Birmingham in October as part of his XXV 25 Years of Hits tour. I’ve seen Robbie live many times, but it’s been a while so it was great to see him again.

I was lucky enough to see comedian Rhod Gilbert at my local theatre in June. Just a short time later he announced he’d had to put the rest of the tour on hold due to being diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Hopefully, Rhod is making a good recovery and we’ll see him back on stage in the new year.

My most recent show was comedian Sarah Millican at my local theatre. We should have seen her back in July 2021, but we finally saw her earlier this month. She was well worth the wait! Despite being a small theatre, our local theatre attracts some great acts.

Along with hopefully getting to see Kiefer Sutherland in 2023, I already have plans to see Hollywood Vampires, astronaut Tim Peake, and comedian Tom Allen.

Out & About

I’ve tried to get out and about as much as possible when the weather and my health have allowed. I’ve visited churches in the local area (Llanyblodwel, Shipton, Smethcott, Ludlow, Llananno and others), as well as those further away (Liverpool Cathedral, to name just one). I went on the local steam railway for the day and took a drive to see the devastating effect the weather had on a local reservoir.

Llyn Clywedog.

Steam at Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway!
The chancel at St Lawrence’s Church.

I spent my birthday weekend at the local literary festival. I watched interviews and talks by authors, chatted with authors and fellow readers, and came home with a stack of books! What more could you ask for from a literary festival?!

Books from Monty Lit Fest in June 2022.
Books from Monty Lit Fest in June 2022.

The Garden

I kept a closer eye on the garden this year. I was given a wildlife camera for my birthday and it has provided a lot of entertainment! From the expected birds and squirrels to hedgehogs and neighbours’ cats – it’s been great to watch them without having to get too close.

A butterfly resting on a yellow dahlia.

Of course, I’ve also spent a great deal of time out in the garden photographing the flowers (mostly dahlias!), bees and butterflies. It’s always a joy to see the garden full of colour.


I’ve continued to support small businesses, both local and further away. While I didn’t post about as many as I would have hoped to, I do already have some posts lined up.

My William Hannah notebook in Chilli Red and Kingfisher.

A ginger cat at Liverpool Cat Cafe.

So, all in all, I think it has been a pretty good year (apart from catching covid twice!). Here’s hoping 2023 is a good one!

How has 2022 been for you?


  1. I would say that you have made the very most of your year, despite the odd disappointment of cancelled gigs, which can be quite frustrating, not to mention costly!

    I like the stack of books you came back from the literary festival with. I have my eye on the Sophie Hannah and Janice Hallett titles.

    We managed to avoid Covid until August of this year, when one of my husband’s clients gave him the virus, which he kindly shared with me. No lasting effects though thankfully and we have managed to avoid catching it again so far!

    Stay safe and very Best Wishes for 2023 🙂

    • Nikki says:

      The Sophie Hannah book is an Agatha Christie novel, written with the blessing of Agatha Christie’s family and estate. I was lucky enough to win the Janice Hallett books through the festival’s Twitter competition.

      • Ah! I see. I didn’t notice that when I checked the book out whilst reading your post. I don’t usually enjoy reading books where one author is writing in the style of another, especially not someone as iconic as AC. I’ll leave it on my ‘wish list’ for now, but I shan’t be in too much of a rush to grab myself a copy. Thanks for pointing that out to me, I really appreciate it 🙂

  2. We stayed healthy the whole year and our daughter came to visit from Oregon. It’s been a couple of years since her last visit so that was nice seeing her again. Best wishes for you for a happy and healthy 2023.

  3. So sorry you’ve had Covid, especially over Christmas – hopefully the coming year will see you Covid-free. It sounds like you had quite a busy year with all those concerts and I like your photos, especially the reservoir one, it’s a great view 🙂

  4. Ginnie Hart says:

    What a lovely site, Nikki, with gorgeous photography. I’m very happy to find out about you…because you first stopped by at MY photoblog. Thank you. I, like you, have avoided COVID all this time…but am totally sure it will catch me one of these days/years, like it did you. Kinda like the flu, I guess, at this stage of the game, though perhaps a bit worse, even with all our vaccines and boosters? Hopefully you’ll be flying high with the entrance of the New Year.

  5. What a great review of 2022! I’m sorry to hear that you caught covid, it’s definitely not fun! I hope you’re feeling much better now. Wishing you a very happy, healthy, and successful New Year Nikki!

  6. Alan Rolfe says:

    A lovely look back over the year. Sorry to hear you had Covid for Christmas; I had my only (so far!) bout of it starting the afternoon that I returned from holiday. I hope you have recovered to see kin the New Year.

  7. Kelly says:

    What a bummer to get Covid again so soon!! I hope you’re feeling okay now.

    You’ve had a fun, busy year. That’s quite an impressive lineup for the tribute show! I bet it was fantastic!

    I look forward to your upcoming small business posts.

  8. tomthebackroadstraveller says:

    …Nikki, I’m not much for large crowd and shows. I’m more of a of a out and about guy. Thanks for your visit, take care and have a fabulous 2023.

  9. I am sorry to hear that you have had Covid twice this year. I hope you have not been too ill second time round. I am impressed with the amount of concerts you have been too, I have not been to anything in years, it always feels like too much of an effort from where I live even to get to local theatres. We used to go to festivals but haven’t been to one of them for a few years now.

    • Nikki says:

      Thankfully, I haven’t been as bad as I was the first time I caught covid. I have to travel for concerts, so they tend to be my holidays rather than booking a week off to go somewhere.

  10. Angie says:

    Nikki – thanks so much for visiting my blog and leaving a comment. My 2022 was terrific – lots of fun travel, backcountry camping, flower gardening and precious time with family! We don’t see many shows due to our remote location, but in 2023 we are seeing Bruce Springsteen in Portland and my husband will travel to Columbus to see him a second time. Happy New Year to you!

  11. Kris P says:

    I’m sorry to hear you got Covid not once but twice! Hopefully, the antibodies you’ve accumulated in the process will see you breeze through 2023 in good health. You made good use of your time in 2022 – I think you may have seen more shows in a single year than I’ve seen in a decade.

    • Nikki says:

      The ginger kitty is from Liverpool’s Cat Cafe. I did a blog post on the cafe as part of my Supporting Small Businesses series earlier this year.

  12. That’s a great review, Nikki. It seems to me you’ve been out and about quite a bit! You have some wonderful shots there, too. Sorry to hear about Covid – that’s a drag. I had it pretty seriously in 2020 and never, ever, want to feel that ill again. There’s some kind of bug doing the rounds at the moment that majors on a really awful cough, but has some other ghastly symptoms. You said via Twitter you’re unable to leave a comment on ABAB? I don’t know why that is – I checked and everything looks OK. Please drop me a email and maybe I can ask someone for advice. Meanwhile – all the very best for a wonderful 2023!! xxx

  13. Lauren says:

    A lovely review of 2022! So sorry you had covid for Christmas. I had covid and it was awful. I hope you have a wonderful new years celebration and feel much better! I hope 2023 is a great year for you!


  14. Jodie says:

    I’m sorry to hear you’re sick! I hope you feel better by now. You’ve had an incredible 2022 – so many great shows! Wishing you a Happy, Healthy 2023!

  15. lisl says:

    Covid seems to catch up with most of us in the end, but it is good to read the positive side of your year’s review. I do wish you well for 2023, Nikki

  16. Jo says:

    Wow, you’ve had a busy year. Sorry to hear that you’ve caught Covid again, I hope you’re not feeling too poorly with it. Wishing you and your family all the very best for 2023 xx

  17. Ann says:

    I’m so sorry you got Covid for Christmas, Nikki. I have managed to dodge the virus so far, only to end up getting flu!
    By the looks of it, you’ve got a most wonderful and busy year. I can’t believe how many shows you went to – I’m still not comfortable going to them – and I absolutely loved joining you on your little trips. Wishing you all the best for 2023! xxx

    • Nikki says:

      I was uncomfortable going to shows again at first, but I seem to have caught covid at more regular places such as my work place rather than at concerts and shows. I hope you’ve recovered already!

  18. Denise Bush says:

    Well it does sound like you had a good year, apart from getting COVID. It’s still around and we got it early in November after avoiding it for 3 years! Luckily the new strain doesn’t seem as bad. I hope you have an even better 2023 … happy New Year!

  19. DeniseinVA says:

    It sounds like you’ve had a very good year and I have enjoyed each and every experience through your photos. So sorry you got Covid twice, ugh! That’s awful, especially over Christmas. Hope you are feeling a lot better by now. My parents were born in Wolverhampton by the way, in Whitmore Reans. Happy and Healthy New Year Nikki, to you and your loved ones.

  20. Beverley says:

    What a pain to get Covid over Christmas. I do hope you are feeling better now and looking forward to all the things you have planned for 2023. It looks like you made the most of last year seeing shows,using your camera in the garden and generally getting out and about.
    Happy New Year.

  21. CherryPie says:

    I am sorry to hear that you caught Covid again. I hope you are feeling better now.

    Apart from Covid it sounds like you had a fun year. I hope 2023 is as good for you.

  22. Ju Lyn says:

    Eeeks! COVID to close the year? Not fun at all. Hope you are all recovered by now (not something we take for granted as some of the folks we know take a looooong time to shake all the symptoms).

    I love that you spent your birthday at a literary festival – that is a super way to celebrate!

  23. Dar says:

    Thanks for stopping by my site! What a thrilling lineup of shows you saw this year – I am envious! But I’m so happy public events have resumed and we can get back out there. 1x Covid for me and hope it stays at 1!

    • Ju Lyn says:

      I hear you – we are cautiously optimistic and treading back into activities with the precautions of not catching another bout of either Covid or then nasty flu that seems to be going around

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