A Little Life Update

19 Sept 2019

A Little Life Update

Well hello. Hi there. It me. Writing to you from – surprise surprise – a café. But a café in a new city! Cor blimey, there’s a lot to catch up on.

We have now lived in Ely – in our new house – for two months. Moving day wasn’t as bad as expected (packing is definitely the worst bit) and the final six weeks of summer were mostly a combination of painting and cursing the heat. Those who know me/have been reading this blog a while will know that me and high temperatures don’t mix well. But throw in DIY and a desire to crack on but being unable to because just walking upstairs (we have stairs!) breaks a sweat, and I am like a little gremlin child. That day it hit 38c? I was alarmingly close to booking a flight to the arctic, no joke. If there was ever a motivation to tackle climate change, it would be because I turn into Lord bloody Voldemort in stupidly high temperatures. Britain (and Kate) is not equipped for 38c folks.

There’s something in the air don’t you think? I tried to explain this to Gary last night and I’m pretty sure I sounded a bit bonkers. It’s that smell, a feeling, in the air at this time of year – a freshness – as the seasons change. And I freaking love it. Autumn you are SO THE ONE. Honestly, it makes my heart sing a little bit. Somehow it’s even better this year because I am unexpectantly loving living in the countryside again. Don’t get me wrong, we are hardly in a rural village, but we are surrounded by fields (our estate literally backs onto wheat fields - Theresa would be losing her shit) and regularly encounter tractors and whaddya know, I’m here for it. If only for the gorgeous sunsets we seem to get on the regular.

We are still getting to know Ely itself (by which I mean, have checked out several of the pubs) but there feels like there’s no rush as we have all the time – potentially the rest of our lives – to do so. I get weirdly emotional and nostalgic when thinking of St Albans and our flat but I have this gut certainty that we are in the right place, which is a nice feeling. I will admit that the commute is draining, but just about bearable when only done twice a week which I try and stick to where possible. Currently filling the train time by watching TV so if you have any boxset recommendations – send em my way.

A Little Life Update

So the house! It’s split over three floors which, yes, I realise makes it sound kinda fancy. Trust me, it’s not fancy guys. There are boxes in every room, exposed piping on the landing, nails sticking out of the kitchen cupboards and we’re not even going to discuss the cartoon fish stickers on the bathroom wall. We have painted three rooms – the guest room (where we are currently sleeping), the study and the box room. As of today – because a bedside table arrived in this morning’s post – the guest bedroom is as finished at it can be. One could argue that the wardrobe doors need a serious lick of gloss (who have I become?) but let’s not have unrealistic expectations. That’s a job for when bigger jobs are done. The other two rooms are in a ‘finishing touches’ stage which is always the fun bit because you get to shop for prints and candles rather than different types of white paint. A plumber has ripped out the old water tank and then this weekend, we knocked down a wall in the master bedroom! I say ‘we’; I mean Gary and my step-dad of course. We conform to stereotypical roles in that regard; I wouldn’t know the first thing about taking down a wall safely (I thought we would just take a sledgehammer to it…. Apparently not). I’ll probably go into more detail around everything we’re doing to the house at a later date but in the next couple of months, we plan to also tackle the living room, bathroom and put in a new kitchen. It’s all go around here. It requires a lot of patience, an acceptance of permanently being covered in dust and/or paint and not knowing where half your belongings are. Still, our new sofas recently arrived so at least we have somewhere to sit again.

When we do sit down, I find myself vaguely mulling over ‘what’s next’. I always like to plan ahead just a little bit, even if it’s only for a couple of months down the line. We have been building up to the summer of 2019 for what feels like a really long time and it kinda feels weird to no longer be planning Big Life Milestones. And also kinda nice? There’s a sort of freedom in it somehow. I’m somewhat baffled that we are already half way through September and 2020 is on the horizon (a little dot on the horizon – but you can see it). Next year stretches out before us completely and utterly plan-free and I’m letting it sit there for now, enjoying the possibilities.

Work is hectic, but good, we are tired, but good, and having a house is hard work so far, but a bloody joy (good job really, given the 25-year debt we now have…). We will spend the next couple of months working hard to get the house in a reasonable state in time for December - a deadline we have given ourselves for no reason other than Christmas - with a cheap week in Devon booked in the middle to give ourselves a breather.

And then, after that, I really don’t know what’s next. But that’s grand. For now, I’m just going to enjoy my favourite time of year and continue pretending that DIY is really fun…