Saturday, 6 December 2014


The fam.

What an exhausting week! The commute hasn't been too bad, considering there are billions of people on the road every morning (okay, a SLIGHT exaggeration: I actually mean millions). The only drawback is the lack of good sleep I feel.

I get home each night by 7:30, eat with my cousin, chat and watch some TV for an hour, then am in bed at 9:00 to read a bit, and lights out so I can get up and on the road by 6:00. To be fair, that gets me to Chertsey up to an hour before I start work, but if I left it any later, the traffic would be horrific(er). I can sit at the coffee shop for a half hour and relax a bit after my drive, so I actually prefer this routine.

I decided not to take the room that my co-worker has available (I still do have to tell her this, however), mainly because I'm not convinced of compatibility, personality-wise. She's nice enough - as am I - but I'm not convinced it would be a great fit. Plus, my cousin is feeling quite down at the moment, and I want to be here as much as I can for her. My friend did mention that her cousin might be amenable to a weekday renter, as he had offered her his spare room. I said I would think about it and let her know on Monday. He lives about 30 miles away, in the Gatwick airport vicinity. So, possibly another option.

As I said, though, the drive hasn't been too awful this week. I did have an awful night on Tuesday. I woke up at 2 a.m. (no idea why) and just dozed until 5:00. Needless to say I was pretty much a drooling mess by the time 2 p.m. rolled around and ended up booking a hotel for Wednesday night. The hotel was at Gatwick Airport (cheap!), a bit of a dump and - likely because I forgot my earplugs - quite noisy, so I had a miserable night there instead.

Yesterday should have been a good day, simply by virtue of being Friday, and it started out okay, but fell apart around noon. We had some deadlines to hit (barely made them), had work returned to us because some of it was improperly filed by the company who sent it to us (it meant I had to fiddle about to get the proper paperwork, adding time to the process), the installers had an hour of frustration and ranting, my friend was near tears as she was being pulled in so many directions - many of which are completely unrelated to her office manager position - but she always seems to rally by the end of the day. She deserves 4 day weekends as far as I'm concerned.

I do like being busy, but I don't handle stress well and I keep forgetting to drink my water, even though I take a 1L bottle with me every day. I'm still doing okay with the eating, but can do much better, so have to focus more. Still feeling a bit more clear headed now that I'm not eating bread as often as I used to. I love my bread, but apparently it doesn't love me, so I'm learning to leave it alone.

Several hours in pretty Lyndhurst this afternoon helped raised my and my cousin's moods. We had an okay lunch at one of the many restaurants (we try to go to a different one each time we go) and I picked up a few things, including a pair of new slippers, which are cute AND comfy. My old ones have too many holes to keep my feet warm anymore, but I'll be keeping them around as an extra pair for a little while yet. I also bought a couple of books and a Christmas present.

One thing I love about England is that it's so dog friendly. We were having lunch and a couple with a beautiful Bernese Mountain Dog came in and sat down for a meal. No one blinked an eye and the owner piped up with "How's my favourite dog today?" People at home would s*%t if a dog was brought into any kind of building, never mind a tiny restaurant where they cook basically out in the open. I love the fact the dogs (as long as they and their owners are well-behaved) are welcomed so warmly. Not everywhere, of course, but many, many more places than at home.

Strictly Come Dancing tonight - week 11 - and thoroughly enjoying the show. It's the quarter-finals and very exciting. Who knew that I - who is most definitely not a dancer - would love a dancing show so much?


Jolie said...

Still hard to believe that you`ve been there over a year already. Time goes so very fast. It`s exciting to hear that you are still happily living the dream in England.

Jane said...

So who's the guy in the photo?? And I love your big smile :):) Seeing a family resemblance with your cousin. I'll be glad (and so will YOU) when you get a living/driving arrangement worked out to your benefit. Hope that doesn't take too much longer!

Northern Living Allowance said...

Hi Jolie - so nice to hear from you! I still find it hard to believe I live here now, with my own car, my own job. Almost at complete independence. Thanks for still following me as I meander my way through my adventure xx

Hi Jane - that guy is my baby brother. Ha ha! Yes, despite the fact I'm used to the commute now, it doesn't allow me any time at all to enjoy something in the evenings. I'm giving myself six months. I think that's reasonable. In the meantime, there are worse places I could wind up each night that a cosy house in the New Forest :)