A typical day in my life looks like…
I’m kind-of pleased to announce there’s no such thing. I have a weekly repeating pattern (term-time only, being a student-y type) but each day is different and the variety is wonderful. I’m able to see Husby, do some studying, do some relaxing and help with family as well as get a tiny, tiny bit of earning in.
…the grass is beginning to be greener on the other side and I’m starting to crave a routine. I’m beginning to crave work, a job, anything, to get up in the morning, go and do my thing then come home and leave it all behind. Not least because being a student (with a Husby signed off sick and at the mercies of the UK benefits system, who seem to think that £18 per week after bills is sufficient for anyone) leaves very little money to go round, to the point that were it not for the generous support of assorted family and friends, we’d’ve been homeless several times over by now.
The things which tend to be constant in my days are things like
Breakfast in bed with Husby, reading whichever book is on the go at the time.
Bickering of some variety.
Facebooking (by the way, I hear that Facebook’s going out of fashion with the hip, trendy crowd, and instagram is now the place to be…!)
A proportion of time on my beloved Youtube, often simultaneously with either of the above two activities.
Bed later than is good for me.
The rest is a lottery and may include such jewels as lectures, practical work to do with the course (as diverse as maintaining tropical fish tanks to dissections to bricklaying), childcare (for lovely Niece and Neff), cleaning (for my client, who tells me about his life and how to restore furniture and is a lovely chap), writing assignments, housework or playing blackjack with my student-y friends as we waste time between lectures and complain about how much time is wasted between lectures.
We’re enjoying the company of Husby’s younger brother and his girlfriend for the weekend. They are mad, funny, sweet people, both of whom I care dearly for. It’s fascinating how much broader Husby’s accent becomes when he’s with his Bro – he becomes quite culchie [Irish derisive colloquialism for someone from the country, or, as they’d put it, “from the back arsehole o’ nowhere”] and I sway between maintaining a hyper-English accent and adopting some of their lilt to fit in. That’s what you get for marrying a foreigner.
Soggy nails trapped me in the bath earlier.
We have a new bath (in our new house – no I’m not over the novelty yet) and one of its features is a non-operational whirly-handle-thing, which is meant to raise and lower the plug when you turn it. Very swish, when it works; sadly this one never has. So the plug is removed manually by the insertion of fingernails under the rim and a steady pull to break the seal and beat the water pressure.
Husby bought me a lovely Lush bath bomb and I’ve been looking forward to using it. Tonight I got my chance. I filled the tub, got in, dunked in Big Blue and prepared to follow the instructions;
Peer over the side of the boat into the big blue
Watch the seaweed float by and feel the salt on your skin
Who needs a holiday when a bath can be this relaxing and refreshing?!Need a holiday but don’t have the time? A soak in this is the next best thing. Lavender oil to relax, lemon oil to clear the mind and seaweed and sea salt to soften the skin – set yourself adrift for hours.
Sadly, after a chapter of the book, my eyes began to close and it had to be chucked over the edge of the bath onto the floor. The warmth of the bath was like a snuggly, floaty blanket and I allowed myself the luxury of drifting into a sleepy haze, feeling the change in temperature as the water lapped up and down with each breath and a portion of skin was exposed to the cool air before being re-immersed in warm, delicious water.
Then I started to think. Bad move.
By the time I thunk about 1.What if the doorbell rang, 2. What if I fall asleep and 3. What if the doorbell rang, the water started to go a little cool and I felt the need for a warm shower to rinse off.
I sat up. I reached for the plughole.
My nails, which had been soaking in the bath, had attained the consistency of warm plastic. I sat in a state of anxious consternation, trying different fingers, different combinations of nails and cursing the fact that i – Husby was possibly right about needing to alter the plug somehow to make it usable and ii – I might be stuck in the bath, unable to get the water out and too cold to go and get a tool to unplug it.
Eventually, in desperation (and having tried bending each of my nails in turn to see which was strongest) I jammed my thumbnail deep between the plug and the side of the plughole and slowly, slowly lifted the plug a crack. Then immediately dropped it.
The second time worked far better and I managed to be better prepared to catch the plug before the draining water slammed it back into place.
Time for a new plug, methinks.
Alongside my upcoming new job (okay, not *that* upcoming – I’ve a few months to the end of the course, then still have to find a vacancy and apply for it. I daresay I’ll need to repeat the process ad nauseum before finding a position) I am beginning to think about what I’d like to learn next.
When I left college (the first time) I learned that I was happy to take a vocational route into work and get paid to train. Over the next 9 years I learned that I love looking after children and dislike managing adults. I got married and learned that Marriage Is Hard. I went back to college and learned lots of fascinating things about ornamental fish (alongside a few doozies like how not to build walls). I’m learning I want a job, but more than just a job on its own.
- Learn to speak another language fluently
- Learn to drive and maintain a traction engine
- Learn to drive a steam train
- Grow some of my own vegetables
We’ve got a portion of my Mum’s allotment to be getting on with, so the vegetables one should be accomplishable. Not sure about the others. I’d like to try another language…maybe Polish. It’d probably be the most useful where I live, and when I’ve heard it spoken, it sounds beautiful.
I read something which made me (mentally) stop and think very hard for a sec. I was perusing another blog (as I am wont to do) and the author was describing a conversation with her husband about whether or not he thought in words, as she did and assumed he would too.
Thought in words?
It wasn’t something I’d ever thought about before, and it was like a firework going off behind my eyes. Like the shiniest new toy, to be observed from every angle before finally, tentatively, being touched, held close and taken ownership of.
If I think hard while I’m thinking, I see the words of my thoughts (interestingly, in Times New Roman) as they scroll past, but I’ve also known myself to think in pictures and in something else which I can’t quite describe – it’s the thing which happens when I’m immersed in a good book and the words I read stop being tangibly ‘words’ and the meanings seem to flow seamlessly from the page into my brain and make sense. Quite often books are like movies unfolding in my mind as the descriptions rush in to build images.
Not all books, though, as I often read fact/opinion books to learn from (notably, Lewis Thomas, whose books I adore) but currently David Bellos’ ‘Is that a fish in your ear?’ – a book about translation. I don’t remember getting pictures as such from it, yet maybe I did, imagining the scenarios as each aspect was unfolded in text.
If only I had the self-awareness to think about how I was thinking something as I was thinking it. I *think* I think mostly in moving pictures and emotion-filled images. How do you think? Have you ever thought about it? How do you feel when an entirely new thought enters your head?
Madhur Jaffrey (famous cook, author and other-things-too) once described that she can imagine flavours and understand if they’d work well together. I love that I can do that too, and one of the great things in life is trying new flavours to add into the database. I also often associate colours with flavours in a weird taste/vision synaesthesia (astringent flavours tend to be reds, earthier flavours tend to be browns, greens are, well, green and I think carbohydrates tend to be yellow), which makes cooking great fun and very colourful.
I sometimes get pictures for flavours, too. I have particularly strong images for things like Christmas pudding (as a child, at the dining table in a silly hat, with the table laden with crackers), chamomile tea (a fresh-mown field on a hillside with deep azure sky above and the mid-afternoon sun blazing down), and jasmine pearl tea (the first step taken inside a giant, victorian hot-house where there are a million warm, damp plants, a riot of flowers, and the noise of water trickling into a pond, somewhere out of sight).
I love being in my brain.