Well this has been quite a hiatus hasn’t it? It was never intentional for me not to blog but somehow, I find myself months on, haven’t not recorded much of my baking nor cooking beyond a quick snap and short sentence or two on my Facebook page. Of course, I have been found in the kitchen on occasion but in the time between Hungry Hubby’s accident and today, I’ve found myself mostly mute.
Being one for never being satisfied doing only a single thing at any one time for most of my life, I actually arrived at a point some months ago where I found myself just not having the will to blog. You see – after an obscenely long period of study and junior jobs, I’d finally bagged myself The One – the job that my whole career has been building too. I had six months to prepare – finish off my year as a foundation doctor and all the assessments that that required.
There were a great many hoops to jump through, forms to fill in, people to inform and get references off – oh you name it, it was a busy time. Meanwhile, hubs and his poorly leg were slowly slowly inching towards recovery. And I am thrilled to announce that after the initial torrid time he had in A&E his recovery process may have been agonisingly slow for both of us, it proceeded completely unimpeded. For the period he couldn’t weight bear though, I found myself also being the primary “get things done” person.
All the cleaning, shopping, doing of the mundane ordinary things we all must do in the grown-up world fell to me and me alone and I’m a little ashamed to say I didn’t cope as well as I could. It was exhausting and all-consuming and it felt like I dragged myself from one day to the next, if I were lucky dragging a brush through my wild hair – making the perfect Swiss meringue buttercream topped cupcakes could not have been further down my list of things to do.
With a somewhat broken spirit, I gradually accepted I had to do only what I actually had to do. Working a soul-destroying rota with few free weekends meant fun got filed away for a rainy day, the focus was, in the words of nineties one hit wonder, Daniel Bedingfield, “I just gotta get through this” then our lives can begin again. For I knew, by the time I took up my new post, Hungry Hubby would be walking again on two feet, no metal work, no crutches and our quality of life would change for the better. And you know what – I was totally right.
7th August 2013. A very special day. A day 14 years in the making. The day I became a registrar in my chosen field of work, a niche specialising in oral diseases. My father always says if you love what you do, you don’t work a day in your life and twee or not, is he right. I do believe, I have walked around with the goofy smile you’ll see in my current Facebook avatar ever since that day!
For me, the acid test for knowing whether you had the right job was going in early because you wanted to and finishing late without even noticing. No more do I whine about not getting a lunch, nor being the one to see the extra patient! Gimme gimme! I want to experience it all and I’m holding out my hands for more :D. It’s been only one month but you know, it’s like falling in love – I just know this is the one. I’m happy and fulfilled and have been lucky enough to even snatch five short but wonderful days in Corfu with my hubby, my best friend and her fiancé, relaxed and ready to write the next chapter. (Corfu being the inspiration for the beef souvlaki, vegetable kebabs and tzatziki punctuating this post today.)
Yes, it’s required leaving my beloved hometown, maybe forever but who knows what will happen once my training is complete. I’m also living apart from Hungry Hubby whilst our new home is finished which is the one painful side effect of my new job. If I’ve learnt one life lesson this year, it would be you just do not know what fate has in mind for you!
Learn it’s ok to just “be” during the tougher, hectic times and wait for the good times to roll in. Which sometimes means one’s blog gathers dust and feels a tad unloved whilst you fill in forms for the General Medical Council, do the cleaning around a one-legged hubby and trawl the Internet for acceptable accommodation in a new, completely unknown city!
Whilst much of the Spring and certainly all of the Summer have come and gone in the time since I last blogged I’ve settled into a new life, one where I smile every day and relish the opportunities laid before me to develop into the clinician and dare I say it, the person I know I am. Moving away hasn’t been easy and both me and The Hungry One have felt the pain of leaving The ‘Pool and our little flat which we bought off plot all empty and white-walled, and have spent the last 7 years moulding into the shape of us.
I miss our kitchen.
I yearn for the Deli halfway down our road.
I’m not ready to say goodbye to the restaurants we had our first meal out at, Valentine’s day at, our wedding at. That really does tug at my heart.
I will miss the waterfront not a quarter of a mile from our front door and the fact the fruit trees planted when our flat was built have just this summer borne their first fruit as we leave. Although, as much as I feel we’ve lost in leaving our home, the feeling that it is the right thing to do could not be stronger. Our new home is a beautiful city, filled with green spaces and some rather serious foodie haunts. I’ve been bowled over by bakeries, grocers, delis and even chocolate shops already!
I feel somewhat as 18 year old me did when I left home for London for my first stint at university – fortunate that an ill-considered choice of city turned out to be the source of so much pleasure and gifted me so many opportunities in the years I was there, I felt nothing but thankful for being a naive 18 year old. Of course, being 32 now, naive is something I hope to have left behind but hopeful, excited, yearning for the next Big Adventure to begin is exactly how I feel today.
So hurry up Hungry Hubby – pack the last of our things and get here quick! We have a whole new world to discover together and a fresh new “us” to write.
Once we have our internet supply installed in our new home (once we find it), normal blogging service will be resumed. And there will cake. Oh, my word will the cake come. Just Jo is coming at ya!
- To make my holiday-reminiscent beef souvlaki simply marinade a thick piece of steak of the best quality you can afford in extra virgin olive oil, crushed garlic, salt and oregano. Cube with a super sharp knife and skewer, cooking on a screaming hot grill a few minutes per side until done to your liking.
- For the veg, I sprayed skewers of veg with oil, sprinkled with more oregano and a little garlic salt before grilling (it’s useful to do these first and keep warm in a medium oven for the few minutes the steak takes to cook). Char marks are desirable.
- For the tzatziki get the bestest, thickest, creamiest Greek yogurt you can find and beat in lots more crushed garlic, a healthy pinch of sea salt crystals together with a half to a full cucumber which you have coarsely grated and squeezed to death in a clean tea towel to get all the excess water out.
- A Greek salad with feta on the side is a must.
- A swim in the Aegean Sea followed by a boat ride to your favourite taverna, with wafts of garlic and oregano on the breeze as you arrive on the jetty; to have it all prepared for you with salty sea water still crusted on your lips to season your food is the authors preferred serving suggestion.