The difference a day makes

Last night Jan came home early. So early that I hadn’t even thought about what to cook for tea yet! Then, instead of working some more, he washed the dishes while I made eggy bread and we sat down together to watch two episodes of Farscape, snuggled up on the sofa. I don’t know whether he figured out for himself that I was feeling lonely and neglected or if somebody told him (he never reads my blog, so that can’t be it), but however he figured it out he acted on it, and it was lovely. It’s amazing the difference that a few hours of quality with my boyfriend can make! Now he just needs to hurry up and finish his thesis so we can have regular couple time again…

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The latest from my life

In between recipes and throwbacks to when I was cute, I thought I’d give you a few updates on how my life looks right now…

  • I logged on to Facebook this morning to find that my dad’s cousin has become the father of a little girl and one of my cousins has got engaged. Meanwhile, I’m over the moon that my boyfriend managed to make time to come to a party with me at the weekend…  How does this committed, long-term relationship thing work again? Cos I’m pretty sure I’m doing it wrong.
  • My grandpa was moved to a different hospital just over a week ago – one in the same town where my grandma lives, so it’s much more convenient.  The doctor there has said the way he’s looking now, it could be weeks rather than days but nobody can really say for sure. He could still go at any time… or he could hang on until after his birthday (he will turn 80 if he does).
  • I’ve actually been given a  “nice” (i.e. interesting and challenging) text to translate thanks to my colleague being on maternity leave and everyone else being busy. Now I’m terrified I won’t do as good a job as said colleague and will have to spend the rest of my life translating only technical and financial texts. Aaargh, the pressure! (I am a good translator, but my colleague is an amazing translator, so she usually gets all the texts that have even a chance of reaching an audience other than IT support people.)
  • I’ve been cross stitching lots of cards recently. I’ve just finished one for my grandma and started on a Mother’s Day card for my mam.  I’m actually quite enjoying stitching the smaller designs – it means I get to finish them before I get bored!

And that’s it for today. I hope you weren’t expecting more. If anything truly interesting had happened I would have blogged about it before now…

 

Well that was unexpected…

I found out yesterday that my ex-boyfriend is engaged, which kind of shocked me a bit. He’s not the first of my exes to get engaged, and he probably won’t be the last. But he’s probably the one I still care most about, despite the fact that he lives in America (he is American) and I’ve seen him once in the last six years… last September, at our five year year abroad reunion. I also met his then girlfriend (now finacee) then. Now don’t get me wrong – I am very, very happy for him, but when I first read the news… well, if I hadn’t already been sitting down I probably would have had to. And hearing this news has brought home to me how alone I am here. It would have been nice to be able to discuss this new development with someone. I told Jan about it, of course, but it’s not the kind of thing I can really talk about with him. So I’m feeling a little lost right now. nd confused… confused because I don’t know what it is I’m feeling. I’m not upset, and I’m certainly not jealous (before anybody suggests that!) but my happiness on their behalf is tinged with a little bit of… something. If anyone can make sense of this, then please explain it to me in the comments. Me, I’m just going to go to bed. I have a long day ahead of me tomorrow (despite the fact that it’s Saturday), starting with having to be on the train at 8am. So much for my weekend lie in….

I wish it were simple but we give up easily*

long-distance-relationshipJan and I will have been together six years next month. Six whole years! I was practically still a kid when we got together. In those six years we’ve gone from being “in a relationship” to “in a long distance relationship” and then back to where we started. While every other relationship I was aware of has either moved on or ended we seem to have come to a complete standstill. Of course there have been changes in both of our lives, but they seem to have only happened to us as individuals, at different times as if we were two entirely separate entities who just happen to know one another (well, obviously we are two separate entities but you’d think there would be some mutual stuff in a relationship as well, right?)

So while all my friends are moving in together, buying houses, getting engaged, exchanging vows and having babies the two of us have moved out of our student residence and got our first flats separately, attended engagement parties and weddings as “boyfriend and girlfriend” (in what seems to me is the same sense of boyfriend and girlfriend that is uttered by 15 year olds) and bought dozens of gifts for other people’s children.

It’s not like I even want to get married and have babies at this stage in my life. I don’t even particularly want to get engaged yet. But it would be nice to feel like some day it might be my turn. What I would like is for us to get a flat together. I mean, I adore my flat, it’s the first place I’ve ever lived that was truly mine and it really is a nice place but only being able to have my boyfriend with my for some of the time… well, it gets a little lonely sometimes. I want to be able to wake up beside him every day (not just when he happens to be staying at mine). I want to know I’ll see him in the evening without having to ask. I want a bed that’s not mine, but ours. Is that really too much to ask?

quarto-desarrumado
Would he want to live with me if I cleaned up more often? (Photo: nanquimvirtual)

Sometimes I’ll find myself trying to work out reasons why he might not want to live with me, despite the fact that he tells me he dosn’t even know why. But it’s as if I need to have a cause so I can start trying to fix it. A while ago I got the idea into my head that once I had a proper job he would want to stay with me. Except then I found a proper job, moved into a flat (by myself), lost my proper job again and found a new one… and I’m still living alone. Now I occasionally think that maybe once I’ve got through my probation period things might start to happen. Then there was the time that I decided I needed to give him a reason to come home to me every night, so I started making sure tea was ready when he came home and he always had something clean to wear. He tells me he likes cooking with me though, so I guess that one’s backfired. A recurring theme (and something that I guess is always is that back of my mind) is thinking that he doesn’t want to live with me because he’s seen the state that my flat gets into, so every few months I’ll make a vow to myself to keep on top of the housework. Unfortunately, as I keep telling you (I am the proverbial stuck record!) my housewifely skills leave much to be desired. So I’ll clean and tidy the entire flat once and manage to wash the dishes immediately after we eat for maybe three days in a row, but then I get bored and the thought of the dishes waiting for me in the kitchen just makes me want to cry, and so I stop and once again Jan has to come home to a messy kitchen once again.

In my more logical moments I realise that whether he wants to live with me or not doesn’t depend on my job or my cooking or how tidy I am, but my logical moments are few and far between. Before long the crazy catches up with me again and I start obsessively cleaning the kitchen and dreaming up new and interesting dishes to win over my man’s heart (because we all know the way to that is through the stomach). And so it goes on, over and over again.

Sigh I know nobody said relationships were easy, but I wish someone had warned me it would be this hard…

*Title blatantly stolen from the song The Other Side of the World by KT Tunstall

The bringer of tea and toast

We survived our day at Castle Frankenstein. I didn’t catch sight of any Igors and no evil scientists seemed to be hanging around waiting to steal my brain. I did have to act as official interpreter for the civil ceremony with only about 20 minutes to prepare, but I was mostly translating for my family and I managed pretty well (despite the lack of dictionaries). Although I’m still annoyed with myself for forgetting the German word for ‘difficulties’ when translating the groom’s father’s speech into German (such a simple word and I’ve used it a million times…). Luckily the bride was able to help though.

We were both tired last night after getting up so early, so we were in bed by 10:30pm. Jan informs me that he caught a cold yesterday, so he’s still in bed even as I type despite the fact that it’s now 2:30pm. I went in at 1:30 to find out whether he wanted any lunch and he complained of a headache and asked for Erkältungstee (herbal tea for the curing of colds). So I fetched tea, I fetched cheese on toast and earlier I did some washing so that he would have something clean to put on in case he ever does decide to get up. And all that despite the fact that when I was ill he spent the entire week at his flat, leaving me to fend for myself. So much for gender equality…

A sort of anniversary

Four and a half years. It sounds like ages doesn’t it?
That’s how long the boyfriend and I have been together today. I know it’s sad to count the months, but half years are ok, right? And it’s not like we’re celebrating (that will come in February when it’s 5 years). Just acknowledging it.

I still can’t quite believe it’s been over 4 years since I drunkenly kissed him in the bar. We had spent pretty much all of that week together and been so obviously flirting with each other, then after a few beers I decided to take the plunge. I guess now it’s fairly safe to say it worked.

I love you Jan. Here’s to the next four and a half years.