Monday, 29 October 2012

The farewells begin; Yorkshire

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Hello, happy Monday!  I can say that with meaning given this is my last working Monday for the year.  Added to that, I had a wonderful weekend with family uuup* north in Yorkshire, including roadtripping up there with my cousin.

A quick visit to Grandad in Leeds, and the first real farewell for me.  He's an old old old man and, whilst every time I see him I think it might be the last, knowing I'm leaving this country behind, this really may have been.  That said, aside from arthritis that leaves him pretty imobile, his health is remarkably good (ie. his heart is strong.

Leaving Leeds behind for the green dales of Yorkshire, the weekend then became a beer*, red wine and love fest around many an open fire.  There were first cousins, second cousins, seconds cousins once removed so on and so on.  Is your family like that? You know you are related but you don't really know how or what to classify the relationship?  Yorkshire puddings on both days, plenty of red and lots of loving.

No complaints from me for this weekend, it was a  wonderful one.

How was your weekend?


*beer.  Mmm.  Timothy Taylor's Landlord would have to be one of the best ales, the nearer the source the better.  Timothy Taylor's Ram Tam is just as good, maybe even more so with its caramel flavours.  So good.


{photos from my weekend, full hexagons, clockwise from top - The Cottage, my cousin's 400year old home | the view from my second cousin's 300+year old cottage in Yorkshire | her dog | beams in the bedroom | Oxfordshire cousin's fireplace | view coming out of Queensbury in Yorkshire | a photo of a photo of Grandad when he was 20 years younger).  Borders are a combination of the wonderful autumn leaves in Oxfordshire and some of the awfully dated decoration at Grandad's house}

Monday, 22 October 2012

Home (whatever that means)

A little update on things...

I’m “home” and I have a lot to share and catch you up on. The holiday was fantastic. Maybe one of the best of my life? For so many reasons, not least of the time out, the time away from work, email, phone (thanks to losing it early in the piece) etc. Time to think, reflect, dream and plan.  And in these small moments where I did think about the big picture, things were clear. 

I am finished in London.  After a great couple of years (4.5!), the love affair is over and it is time for me to move on.  To this end, I’m now negotiating end dates with work and planning what’s next. 

I’ll recap the trip properly pretty soon but until I shared this news, I didn’t really feel like I could explain a whole lot of things.  I’ve slowly started telling people and it just feels good, it sits really well with me.  I’m becoming unemployed, beginning my goodbyes and heading for the unknown.  Next up – trip planning.  Thinking Africa – Australia (for some weddings) – Central & South America - Australia.  Any hints or tips welcome, especially if you have any knowledge of reputable volunteer organisations (both short and long term placements).

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{taking it all in, Aksu Canyon, Kazakhstan)