Monday, 26 July 2010

Happy Anniversary

My husband and I recently celebrated four years of marriage. It seems to have flown by (if you'll excuse the pun!)

My brother-in-law sent us an email on the day to congratulate us. In it he said that he and his wife had been reflecting on all the hugely stressful events that we've had to deal with since then, and said how impressed they had been with how well we'd coped with them. He also said that he hoped the next four years would be better for all of us - something I sincerely hope will be the case.

Since we married, you see, we've dealt with:

Having a baby (yes, wonderful, but stressful too!)
Two car crashes
Major financial worries
Moving country and employer
Leaving an established career behind
And, of course, the worst one of all - losing a parent.

The only major life stress that we haven't experienced is divorce, and trust me, that's not on the table!

So, here's to another four years, my darling. Life is always brilliant with you, no matter what we face, because I married my best friend and soul mate. Together, we can get through anything.

How lucky are we?

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Take That - the reunion

Obviously this news is rather old by now (personally I blame the baby!) but I just had to post about Robbie Williams' decision to rejoin Take That.

Regular readers of my blog will know that I was an ardent teenage Take That fan, and that for some reason my obsession has refused to abate in adulthood. And I must say that for a Take That fan, the idea that the original line-up may well tour together next year is very, very exciting news indeed.

Now, I appreciate that for those of you not given to liking boy bands, this will all seem very frivolous. Which, I suppose, it is - except that for some unknown reason, this band have the ability to make me feel better, always. They represent escapism (rather vital during my hormonal teenage years) and nowadays, pure, innocent and unadulterated fun.

So, I greet this news with joy. One of the best parts of being a grown-up is the awareness that you can like what you like, without worrying what anyone else thinks. So, hoorah for Take That, all five of you!

Wednesday, 14 July 2010


We've just got back from a lovely long break to the UK. It was the first time my Dad and my husband's Dad had met our son, and it was so wonderful to see them fall in love with him, just as we have. He's really growing up now, starting to make new noises every day, is reaching our for toys, and has learned to stick his tongue out when we do, and his smile is the most beautiful and captivating thing I've ever seen.

It was brilliant to be back in the UK, and we made the most of the wonderful summer weather (we always seem to get the best British summer weather when we visit - it's raining there now!), ample supplies of bacon and sausages, and lots and lots, (and lots) of booze. Naughty Mummy and Daddy, eh! We're now several pounds heavier, but we had a wonderful time.

We loved seeing our families again, although my husband found my parents rather grating after a week staying in their house (which I think is par for the course with in-laws. My parents are also particularly demanding and full of beans, which can be quite exhausting when you're trying to have a holiday!) Going home when you're an expat, you see, is a difficult thing to do; whilst YOU want to have a holiday, your family wants to make the most of it being such a rare chance to see you, hence an inevitable conflict over visits, activities, and my father's favourite, "the schedule". Hmmm, it tires me out just thinking of it.... The plus side of their enthusiasm was that mum and dad took care of our son for us so that we could have dinner out together sans baby for the first time, which was lovely, and we also went for a long hill walk together too, knowing that he was in safe hands. It's something we can't do back here in the Gulf, so we really appreciated it.

At the end of our couple of weeks, despite a few annoyances along the way, and a lot of fairly stressful miles on the hire car (our families live miles apart in the UK) we felt we'd had a lovely time, and were not looking forward to leaving.

Saying goodbye at the airport was harder than usual. My parents came to see us off, and I felt so guilty taking their new Grandson away from them, just when they'd got to know him. For me, I realised I was going to miss the gorgeous green fields and hills, the relaxed atmosphere where you can drink beer in a pub garden and buy a bottle of fizz from a supermarket, eating bacon sandwiches for breakfast and sitting out in the garden until 10pm because it's still light. In short, all the things you take for granted when you live in the UK, and only realise are fantastic when you don't live there anymore. And, most of all of course, we miss our families, who we love hugely and miss very much indeed. We very nearly turned around at the aircraft door - it was that heartwrenching to leave.

I can't say I'm back here with joy in my heart. We've lived here a year and half now, and are very settled, have lots of friends, a good future and great financial security. This is the best place in the world to be right now, aviation wise, and I've carved out a great career niche here which I will be able to continue to exploit when our son is older.

But, as the saying goes - there's no place like home....



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