150ish Things I’m Grateful For In 2018 (Updated!)

Gratitude is a weird thing. At an abstract level, we often know we have abundance in our lives, but can’t actually capture it in words or with the proper context. I believe that’s because we know what we have, but we don’t have the context to know what we don’t have. And that’s often the hidden areas where gratitude lies.

Let’s just get started with it so you can see what I mean. By the way, these are in no particular order.

“Who knows England who only England knows?” -Kipling

Here are The 150ish Things I’m Grateful For In 2018:

  1. I’m grateful I no longer have to fight a dozen mosquitos every time I go to take a bath. It’s true. Mosquitos suck. Imagine standing in the bathroom and trying to fend off a silent assault on many fronts from a platoon of blood-thirsty, disease-ridden flying monsters every day. True story! That was my life in Delhi. So yeah, I’m grateful I don’t have to do that.
  2. I don’t know if you caught that in the previous point, but yes, I said baths. To be precise, it was a bucket bath. Showers are so much better! Though bucket baths did make me appreciate water scarcity in much of the world and I’m more aware of it now.
  3. So how did I get out of bucket baths and mosquitos? Canada! Yes, my new home. I’m so grateful for that. Thanks Canada for having me!
  4. WhatsApp Groups — I’m grateful for the mute notifications feature on WhatsApp.
  5. I’m grateful that no one I’ve met in Canada so far has taken the liberty to add me to any WhatsApp groups.
  6. Oh yes. I’m grateful for coffee shops, especially the ones that stay open late or open early. You’re the real MVP.
  7. I’m grateful for my earmuffs. Every store in the Eaton Center were sold out of them, but luckily I found a pair at Canadian Tire. It’s been -20C and windy here, so they’ve been a life saver.
  8. I’m grateful for silence. It’s so quiet here.
  9. I’m grateful I don’t have to listen to any Indian radio stations in my Uber rides.
  10. I’m grateful for WiFi.
  11. I’m grateful for my friends.
  12. I’m grateful for laughs — Bill Burr, Norm MacDonald and Anthony Jesilnek on YouTube to shows around Toronto at Second City and Yuk Yuks.
  13. I’m grateful to Uber for making cities accessible to me wherever I am. I’ve consistently had positive experiences with my rides in India, Japan, Thailand and now in Canada.
  14. I’m grateful for the little serendipitous moments in life. It turns out that my best pal from high school moved to Toronto recently too, so it’s great to see him.
  15. I’m grateful that two of my childhood friends live in Toronto. They moved from Kathmandu to Toronto when I was 11 or 12. But it’s so nice to pick up our friendship after all these years without missing a beat.
  16. I’m grateful for the TTC. Many Torontonians complain about delays and imperfect service. But I could not be more happy with how TTC makes Toronto accessible to me via the subway, street cars, buses and more. You really don’t need a car in the city.
  17. I’m grateful for blue skies. It’s been a while since I got to kick back and consistently enjoy the vibrant sky blue dotted with puffy white clouds floating around.
  18. I’m grateful for the sunrise. I’m fortunate that I wake up to a large window facing East and thanks to my jet lag I often catch the night sky turn to beautiful shades of blue and orange.
  19. I’m grateful for Lake Ontario. It adds so much to the city. Well, it’s no Lake Superior, but it’s pretty good. :)
  20. I’m grateful that people are so nice here in Canada. After several frustrating years in Delhi of literally zero small talk, I’m glad I can walk down the road and say “hey”, “have a good one” or just a nod. It’s the little things.
  21. I’m grateful for the comfortable life of Toronto. There are really no problems here. Well, there are. But when compared to almost any other part of the world, we realize just how awesome we have it here.
  22. I’m grateful for Canada for being so welcoming to not just skilled workers like me, but people from across the world that are seeking a better life for themselves and their families, especially the Rohinya, Syrians, and others.
  23. I’m grateful that Toronto isn’t homogenous. Most cities are. Even Minneapolis and St. Paul were. Neighborhoods in Toronto have character and charm.
  24. I’m grateful for forced air heating in all the buildings. It’s -22C outdoors, but it’s comfortably warm in here.
  25. I’m grateful for the clothes on my back and in my closet, I mean, suitcase.
  26. I’m grateful for the perspective that the past three years have given me. Two roads diverged in the woods and I took the one less traveled, and that’s making all the difference.
  27. I’m grateful for my recent travels: India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Thailand, Japan, Mauritius and now home in Canada.
  28. I’m grateful for clean air. Wow. I could write a book about this.
  29. I’m grateful for winter clothing. It’s -22C today, even colder with the wind chill. But a nice pair of gloves, jacket, woolen socks, and several more layers makes it just bearable.
  30. I’m grateful for The Path. I walked from The Union Station to Eaton Center without stepping out at all. It’s impossible to navigate by ear, but you can easily download a map on your phone that does the trick.
  31. I’m grateful for the TTC subway. Did you know that all subway stations have WiFi? Amazing!
  32. I’m grateful for the TTC streetcars too. By the way, the public transportation system in Toronto isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty darn amazing. I have a monthly TTC pass and I use it multiple times every day. Hop on. Hop off. Anytime. Anywhere. It helps that I live a couple blocks away from a subway station too.
  33. I’m grateful for coffee. Mmmm…. coffee!
  34. I’m grateful that I can speak, write, read and have a conversation in English.
  35. I’m grateful that I have a phone, well two actually. It was only a decade ago that Apple released the iPhone, the first truly smart phone. And now they’re so ubiquitous. There are more smartphones in India than people.
  36. I’m grateful that Lyft has come to Toronto now. Uber’s approach in most cities is to be the “last man standing” in the market by offering very cheap rides. But until recently they were the only ones in Toronto so they had no incentive to lower prices. Now that Lyft has entered the game, I look forward to having options.
  37. I’m grateful that I’m taking the time to write down this list. It’s helping me realize the abundance in my life today.
  38. I’m grateful for my laptop. This mid-2012 MacBook Pro is a gem. It’s still humming along admirably.
  39. Oh yeah, I’m grateful for bottomless coffee at diners.
  40. I’m grateful for all the languages I hear as I walk across Toronto everyday.
  41. I’m grateful for double doors in buildings. Not only is it good for the environment by reducing the heat lost while doors are opened, but the space between the doors also provides relief from the cold while you wait for a ride, take out your keys, etc.
  42. I’m grateful for bookstores. Over the last three years, I’ve really missed bookstores that have wide aisles. Aisles? Is that what they’re called? It makes for such a more comfortable experience.
  43. I’m grateful that I don’t have to deal with the bookstores in Delhi anymore, most of which are smaller than a regular Starbucks store, with books stacked everywhere.
  44. I’m grateful that BuzzFeed style clickbait listicles “#44 may surprise you” aren’t popular anymore. At least, I haven’t seen them in a very long time. So that’s nice. :)
  45. I’m grateful that I don’t have to deal with the absurd security theatre at every mall in Delhi anymore. X-ray machine for all bags, walk through metal detector and then still get felt up by not one but two guards. Ugh.
  46. I’m grateful that I don’t have to deal with the absurd security theatre at the Delhi metro anymore.
  47. I’m grateful that I don’t have to deal with the ridiculous security theatre at movie theaters in Delhi anymore. Don’t get me started on that. That’s an entire blog post in itself.
  48. I’m just so grateful that I’m in Toronto now man. After living in the States for more than a decade, Delhi was excruciating. I don’t mean to just rip on Delhi, but damn that’s not a habitable place.
  49. I’m grateful that people say hi and smile here.
  50. I’m grateful for the fast moving clouds across Toronto. It’s true. Most of the places I’ve visited aren’t on the shore of a Great Lake or the ocean, so I’m not used to seeing clouds constantly in motion across the sky. It would make for some awesome time-lapse videos.
  51. I’m grateful for Twitter.
  52. I’m grateful for the Facebook NewsFeed Eradicator browser extension.
  53. I’m grateful for two-factor authentication.
  54. I’m grateful for YouTube. It’s surprising how many songs I listen to on there, as opposed to Soundcloud or Spotify.
  55. I’m grateful for puns and silliness. There’s a boat on Lake Ontario near Yonge Street called “Significant Otter.” That always cheers me up. Always! :)
  56. I’m grateful for the wonderful people in my life.
  57. I’m grateful that I got to attend President Obama’s Town Hall in Delhi in November 2017.
  58. I’m grateful for Toronto’s firefighters. Despite three false alarms in a single day in our building, they showed up the next day when the alarm sounded a real fire. They put the fire out within a few minutes, and a team spent the rest of the day investigating why it happened.
  59. I’m grateful for Americanos. Pre-caffeine Amrit is no fun.
  60. I’m grateful for the warm weather we’ve been having over the past couple days. Approx 6 to 9 Celsius.
  61. I’m grateful for Google Maps. Even though I’m getting to know the city but it’s remarkable
  62. I’m grateful for the WiFi in this restaurant where I’m writing this from. That’s Eggsmart on Bay and Elm.
  63. I’m grateful that I don’t necessarily have to write out a 150 different things I’m grateful for before hitting publish. I’m gonna hit publish and continue working on this over the next few days. ;)
  64. I’m grateful for the CN tower. Whenever it pops up into my view in the skyline, it really hits me that “wow, I’m really in Toronto.” :)
  65. I’m grateful for how the cool breeze feels on my face as I step out of any building here in the Fall and most Winter days. It’s as refreshing as splashing my face with some cold water.
  66. I’m grateful that I don’t have to worry about air pollution here. I do notice the few sources of pollution here and there, and am grateful for the clean air here, but more than anything I’m grateful that I don’t have to worry about it.
  67. I’m grateful that pedestrians and drivers obey traffic signals in Toronto.
  68. I’m grateful for the Toronto policemen for keeping us safe. Although I’m a bit disappointed that they’re not all mounties. I really thought all cops here would be mounties, but regardless I’m grateful for their service.
  69. I’m grateful for the Eaton Center. It’s like Toronto’s Mall of America from Bloomington, MN.
  70. I’m grateful for Toronto’s DineSafe website. It tells you the latest and historic inspection reports of all establishments serving and preparing food across Toronto. That includes restaurants, coffee shops, caterers, bars, take out places and more.
  71. I’m grateful for books.
  72. I’m grateful for bookstores.
  73. I’m grateful that there’s almost always a bookstore nearby. The Indigo bookstores in the Eaton Center and near Bay and Bloor are my go to destinations in Toronto. Both have a Starbucks inside too.
  74. I’m grateful for serendipity.
  75. I’m grateful for spontaneous conversations with others at coffee shops over books that either I or they are reading.
  76. I’m grateful for coffee shops that are open late.
  77. I’m grateful for diners that open early.
  78. I’m grateful that I get to see the world from another person’s point of view through a book. For example: My February book is “Bad Feminist” — a series of essays by Roxanne Gay.
  79. I’m grateful for the “mute words” feature on Twitter.
  80. I’m grateful for the mute button on twitter. I can still follow someone, yet not have their tweets in my timeline if I don’t want it — for good or just temporarily.
  81. I’m grateful for rain. It’s raining right now. It’s supposed to turn to freezing rain, which isn’t all that great though.
  82. I’m grateful for Toronto’s China Town.
  83. I’m grateful for King’s Noodle — a restaurant serving delicious Chinese food on Spadina and Dundas.
  84. I’m grateful for the variety of cuisines available in Toronto. It’s really something special.
  85. I’m grateful for the abundance in Toronto — abundance everywhere.
  86. I’m grateful that the cost of living in Toronto for basic necessities isn’t that much higher than that of New Delhi — with one exception: rent.
  87. I’m grateful for opportunities in Toronto — job openings everywhere.
  88. I’m grateful for networking events.
  89. I’m grateful that Twitter turns the world into a village with zero degrees of separation.
  90. I’m grateful that over the past two years I haven’t spent much time on Facebook. Thanks primarily to the NewsFeed Eradicator browser extension mentioned above.
  91. I’m grateful for the Tech ecosystem in Toronto.
  92. I’m grateful for TechTO, a monthly Toronto event, through which I’ve met many amazing people. I’ve attended every single one since I got here.
  93. I’m grateful for Fuckup Nights, a monthly Toronto tech meetup event, where entrepreneurs talk about their… fuck ups.
  94. I’m grateful for the Waterfront area in Toronto.
  95. I’m grateful for the mild winter in Toronto — well, relative to Minneapolis.
  96. I’m grateful for the diversity of food readily available in this city.
  97. I’m grateful that people follow traffic laws here.
  98. I’m grateful that this is one of the safest places on earth.
  99. I’m grateful for the 5 innovation superclusters initiative that Canada recently announced.
  100. I’m grateful for Uniqlo — yes, I just went from innovation superclusters to Uniqlo, but hear me out. I accidentally discovered it in Tokyo last year, and was thrilled to find that one of their only international stores is right here in Toronto at the Eaton Center.
  101. I’m grateful for the Air Canada Center in Toronto.
  102. I’m grateful for the headlining acts that swing by here regularly. You can’t take that for granted.
  103. I’m grateful that the Raptors and the Maple Leafs play here. The tickets are astronomically expensive compared to games in the States, but at least, the games happen here. I don’t think Vancouver, Montreal, Ottawa or Halifax have NBA teams that see the top players come to their towns all the time. So I’m grateful for that.
  104. I’m grateful for Justin Timberlake’s concert here last night. It was the Man of the Woods Tour.
  105. I’m grateful for JT’s opening act here, Francesco Yates. He’s a 22 year old artist from Toronto and he was a hoot.
  106. I’m grateful that I got the main floor tickets to the concert where there were no seat numbers. You were free to flow around as you please.
  107. I’m grateful that I got to pick a really cool spot to watch the concert from. It was as “front row” as it gets. It was directly in the middle of all the action. Good times.
  108. I’m grateful for the chatty group of folks from Buffalo, NY that drove up here for the concert. It was a hilarious bonus to the concert.
  109. I’m grateful for my good health.
  110. I’m grateful that I’m able bodied.
  111. I’m grateful that there are always coffee shops around the block from wherever I am.
  112. I’m grateful for the printers at the TRL Toronto Reference Library on Yonge and Bloor. In a few minutes, I can zip in and out with prints when I need it. It’s really convenient.
  113. I’m grateful for the librarians and staff at the TRL too. They serve the community with a smile.
  114. I’m grateful for always discovering new restaurants in Toronto — recently Calii Love.
  115. I’m grateful for all the restaurants that I’d love but haven’t yet discovered in Toronto.
  116. I’m grateful for moments like this that I spend offline. It’s nice to not have the internet.
  117. I’m grateful for the person (Jane) that waved her book at me at Starbucks this morning. It was exactly the same book that I was holding. Tribe of Mentors by Tim Ferrriss. We had a nice little chat about it.
  118. I’m grateful that doors here are handicap accessible.
  119. I’m grateful for double doors on buildings — keeps the energy costs low, prevents wind gusts and keeps us all comfortable.
  120. I’m grateful for all that I don’t know. There’s so much to learn. So much to grow. So much to explore. And more. This isn’t “it” — there’s so much more to look forward to.
  121. I’m grateful for hugs.
  122. I’m grateful for back rubs!
  123. I’m grateful for kisses.
  124. I’m grateful for my arms for always being by my side.
  125. I’m grateful for moments where I can make someone laugh.
  126. I’m grateful for my Swiss Gear bag that’s been with me to 11 countries and counting.
  127. I’m grateful for Netflix.
  128. I’m grateful for comfortable couches.
  129. I’m grateful (uh oh, I can’t believe I’m about to write this publicly) for my reading socks!
  130. I’m grateful for ideas.
  131. I’m grateful for the back of the napkin.
  132. I’m grateful for health care in Canada. I recently got my OHIP card in the mail. I’m grateful that I’m healthy so I haven’t had to use it. But it’s nice to have the peace of mind that I have coverage in case I need it. And also importantly, others around me have health insurance here.
  133. I’m grateful for all the people I get to learn from in Tim Ferriss’ book Tribe of Mentors.
  134. I’m grateful for the bars along Dundas, Ossington and College streets.
  135. I’m grateful for a good night out with good friends.
  136. I’m grateful for silly jokes. What did 0 say to 8? Nice belt!
  137. I’m grateful for stand up comedy on YouTube. Yesterday I watched Pet Holmes’ set on CONAN way back in the day.
  138. I’m grateful for the frequent but random bursts of ideas I have while I walk.
  139. I’m grateful for the milder winters in Toronto than Minneapolis
  140. I’m grateful that it already feels like Spring here. It’s between -2 and 2C on most days. It’s pretty comfortable.
  141. I’m grateful for storms in my life — they’ve made me stronger.
  142. I’m grateful for technology (videos, books, etc.) that allows us to continue to be inspired by the likes of Steve Jobs, Dr. King and countless others even though they’re no longer around.
  143. I’m grateful for the implications of Moore’s Law.
  144. I’m grateful for the abundant world we live in.
  145. I’m grateful for the “repeat” function on the music app on my Mac. I like listened to a song over and over again while working. After a while the song fades into the background and I don’t even realize that it’s playing and I’m just focused on the task at hand. Like right now.
  146. I’m grateful that I have my domain name. That’s AmritSharma.com.
  147. I’m grateful for the spacious bookstores in Toronto. I probably wouldn’t realize how awesome they are if it wasn’t for the crammed and haphazard bookstores in Delhi.
  148. I’m grateful for the time I spent in Nepal after the earthquake. Actually, I’m grateful that I was able to be there. As much as I tried to serve the country, in hindsight, I feel like the country gave me so much more.
  149. I’m grateful that I accidentally discovered that I have a knack for writing. I was shocked more than anyone else.
  150. I’m grateful that I got to spend time in rural villages of Nepal and developed friendships and connections with people that I otherwise wouldn’t have crossed paths with.
  151. I’m grateful for serendipity.
Bless up!

Have a great day.

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