Wednesday, 25 September 2013


In a matter of weeks, life is good again.

There's still the issue of the Homework Monster rearing it's incredibly ugly head, we've now got what seem to be 3 fox holes in the newly cleared but yet to be planted garden to deal with, but overall that's about it. Even G's hours have reduced slightly, or maybe MissM and I are just used to them.

I sincerely do not mean to offend anyone, but the time in Winchester seems to be just a distant memory already. It's like we went from Dublin to Japan and back again. Maybe going back to a place you've been to is like that. It's always faster driving home than going, don't you think?

Let's go thru the checklist:

House - Very lovely. It's light, bright and very warm! All our stuff fits. Artworks on walls. Ikebana is happening courtesy of MrsD's garden. Don't need to refer to the manuals to use the oven/s as often. Garage should be cleared of the extra furniture the owners kindly left for us but we don't need, this afternoon which means we can attempt to put the car into the garage for the first time.

We're waiting on the insurance claim from the move to replace the things that got broken, so a shopping trip to Ikea will happen sooner rather than later.

Garden - Professionally mowed, and tidied up. Now we have 3 fox holes to get rid of, before we start planting bulbs for spring, and some hardy shrubs for now. I'm slightly motivated to learn how to garden  so we'll see where that idea goes.

School - MissM loves school. She's enjoyed all her schools. Her teacher MrP is funny, warm, caring, passionate about the kids and teaching. He's Irish and loves a chat. Her class mates all seem very nice too; the mums are friendly enough, tho if I had just arrived and didn't know a sole I think I'd be feeling similar to how it was at PM. It's a friendly school, but 3 weeks in, there's been no class/grade coffee morning, there's no mentor programe for newbies,  the class parents have just put out an email for a get together next week, the class list was emailed last week which helps with contacting parents to organize the kids to catch up after school or weekends.

The Parents Group hosted a night for new parents last week. We were given name tags, but with our child's name not ours. We found one set of parents from MissM's class and chatted with them all night which was lovely. The Acting Head of School spoke, then the Head of the Junior School spoke and that was it. What a wasted opportunity for the Parents Group - no introduction, no call for volunteers, no invitation to join. There's no way MrsA and I would have let such a golden opportunity pass us by at YIS.

I've told MrP if he ever needs help in class or on field trips I'm only too happy to help; put my name down to volunteer in the school library; and if the Parents Group wants another pair of helping hands, I'm happy to get involved there too.

Friends - it's a true friend who just sits down with you for a coffee'n'chat like it was only yesterday and not 5 years (of course FB chatter helps keep people connected). Reconnecting with friends in person from our first time here has been amazing.

IWCD - Just as good, albeit different. Five years is a long time, but it's lovely to be back amongst friends. Book Club is an enjoyable monthly activity. Theatre group continues to be difficult to join until G's workload calms down and he can guarantee to be home early for me to get into town; wonder if there's an opportunity for a matinee group but then we've to get back for school pick up. The Area Coffee Morning Groups have been finalised, I'm in Area D. We're having our first get together for the 2013/14 year in two weeks.

Ikebana - Would you believe one of the Japanese ladies is an Ikebana  Master! She teaches KOFU style which uses a lot more materials than Ohara. I found the first class challenging but it was great to be thinking subject, object, secondary, ground fillers, tall fillers etc. Classes are monthly, so between time, I'll focus on Ohara and send MrsN photos of my work which she emails comments back; we'll eventually set up a monthly Skype session. I fear that without constant attention from Sensai, I'll be doing more freestyle than anything else.

G - Works going well, tho not without drama. His line manager, who is also a friend collapsed in a meeting two weeks ago and was taken to hospital. He's fine, tho taking it easy. Guy and his team presented to the clients that they are ready for them to launch as planned ...... it's only the tiniest pieces of the project that enable them to do this, but considering how behind the ball they were a few months ago it's incredible they still made their clients deadline.

We've joined the gym as a family, found a hairdresser, got a GP, been introduced to two lovely young ladies by a friend to sit with MissM when we go out, and had afternoon tea with the neighbours.

It's funny weird, not funny HAHA how quickly things can unravel, thru no fault, or some fault of your own, and then by changing a few things, in our case, big things like moving country, things can return to normal.

We do need to learn from the downtime, to draw strength as a family and individuals what happened, how we responded, how we coped or didn't, what might we have done differently, lessons learned so not to repeat them.

An acquaintance from Winchester moved to Istanbul around the same time we moved to Dublin. I'm sure if we had both stayed in Winchester, we'd have become good friends. Anyhow, we're FB buddies and we both know that that in itself offers us the chance of a great friendship. She very kindly said to me that not every place is for everyone; that sometimes, thru no fault of ours or the people we met, the timing isn't right and so things can and do go wrong. She apologised that Winchester wasn't the right place or time for us, but said how very glad she was we met.

Sometimes you have to remove yourself from a situation to see it more clearly. I am grateful for the friendships we made while in Winchester, for the memories of interesting days out, the fun times with the family and friends who visited with us and even tho it was difficult at times, the lessons learned.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

As Fonzie would say, with his thumb up, hhhheeeeeeeeyyyyyyyyy

With friendship

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