Monday, 12 June 2017

ms-havachat's blogging is back - HELLLOOOOOOOOO!

Hello Dear Friend,

Hope you are well! It's been ages since we chatted. How's things?

WOW, time flies right?

I would like to apologise for the long and unexplained absence these past few months. Nothings wrong. The words just didn't flow. ms-havacaht on Facebook has filled the void as it's been somehow easier to type out a '30 second sound bite' than write an essay.

Do you follow me on Facebook, or just here at the blog?

Why not do both? Love your company. Here's the link. Look forward to seeing you there.

So, what have you been up to these past couple of months (I know, MONTHS!) Our last chat was back in early April! But as we're friends, you know that we'll simply pick up where we left off and it'll be like yesterday when we sat and chatted.

Are you curious about what I've been doing that's stopped the flow of words from my head thru my fingers onto the laptop? Hope so, cos here it comes, in no apparent order:

  • Nominated interim president of the expat women's club
    • Steep and fast learning curve about the club, the policies and procedures in order to run board meetings, host general meetings, prepare for AGM, answer questions, and be available to 14 board members.
    • Honoured to be voted in as President for the new year, and the learning curve got even steeper if that's possible. 
    • Been on a few lovely guided walks in London boroughs (not called suburbs), enjoyed a couple of delicious lunches. 
  • Tween has had a few tween issues with friends. Boy did that take a lot of hugs and chats. So proud of tween in how she's handled things. Hopefully it's all behind them now.
  • Hubby's been away for business a lot! But we're ok with it. Monday - Friday are full, afternoons are busy and sometimes cheese on toast for dinner and a glass of wine, followed by binge watching TV is all a girl needs.
    • Talking of bing watching
      • Big Little Lies! WOW! Have you seen it? What did you think? If you haven't you absolutely must!
      • Tween and I started to watch Gilmore Girls from the very beginning. At times Laurali and Rory and the parents are so frustrating, but it's great tween/mum time on a rainy afternoon.
      • 13 Reasons Why. It's not really something you'd rush to watch, but it is worth watching. From a parents perspective is frightening! It's a great piece for opening conversations with mid-late teens. Social media, and how we treat people is so easily abused by younger generations. Some kids know exactly what they are doing while others innocently do what other's are doing; they don't think about consequences. MrsJ watched it and I was shocked (Based on nothing more than what i'd heard about it) She suggested I watch it - how relatable it was on so many levels, how easy it is for things to get out of hand, be misunderstood, for someone to be hurting and keep it quiet. 
      • There's been Formula 1 racing with Hubby on weekends to watch.
      • And the news! OMG. The news. As you know, I'm a news junkie but I find myself pulling away, not wanting to know anymore (you the same?)
  • We've been in a sort of expat Limboland these past few months waiting on the announcement for the tender Hubby's involved with - we figured in our minds, if they lost, we'd be gone (along with others); if they won then there's a better chance of staying one more year pending re-negotiations of contract which expire in November. FUN and GAMES.
    • That got me started thinking about 'the move' even tho there wasn't one confirmed.
    • Started purging; researched boot sales (they don't do garage or yard sales in the UK, at least not here); 
    • popped a few things online for sale (a few went, most didn't)
    • Started making The List of Things To Do pre-move (for a move that is not happening)
  • Took full advantage of lovely mornings and went for walks with friends. Did one on my own - same route, seemed to take f-o-r-e-v-e-r without company. Podcast kept dropping out as the wifi kept dropping.
  • Read a few books.
  • Started using our English Heritage membership on a Sunday and went for long drives to walk around grand mansions or fabulous ruins followed by a pub lunch. Highly recommend it. Gets everyone off their electronic devices!
  • Invested time in researching online photo album sites to no avail. I love and miss  more than I can bare - so much so, I'm years behind which is making the search even more frustrating. 
  • Love my mornings at home with a cup of coffee, Skyping for hours with a friend. It can so easily reach lunchtime and all I've done is chat and sip. I highly recommend it! Makes friends feel not so far away - you'd be chatting and sipping in a cafe or at home anyways, so doing it online is (nearly) the same. We so often solve world problems and help each other too, as well as catch up with family life and 'stuff'.
  • Bought a walking machine from a friend. It's in the garage. I use if when it's yucky weather and can't walk outside. I really bought it for Hubby so he can get 15 mins of movement in a day - he's walked on it once. Not sure I'll keep it much longer. 
  • Have had lots of home-alone days which in the beginning were frustrating but I have to admit, I've grown to enjoy them. There's something naughty and indulgent about being home. When the house is clean, the washings done, ironings away etc it's very lovely to relax amongst it all. 
  • There are times over the past few months when I've felt maybe the Monster from Winchester was returning, teasing me when it felt it could get a swipe in. I'm taking care of myself and feel confident I know the signs. 
  • OH! I also finished on the school parents board. The person replacing me is going to be terrific! 
So all that's been stopping me blogging is me :) 

If I said 'writers block' would that sound more official, more acceptable? Maybe I should delete all of the above and simply say 'writers block'.

The next hurdle is 'this time of year' aka farewell season as friends get ready to leave for new adventures or repatriation. Maybe it's the annual routine. Maybe it's the fact we know what it's like to be the ones' leaving AND staying, and sometimes leaving is so much more fun as in it's exciting to be heading off on a new adventure vs one-more-year.

Staying means a long summer, kind-of; it means saying hello to a lot of newbies, getting to know them, making a couple of new friends, thinking you've a friend when you don't, missing hanging out with friends who have moved on and are settling in so communication isn't as frequent; waiting out the year til it's your turn to be the one leaving.

There's much to be said about living in the family home for 20+ years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

While writing this I realise that maybe there's more to my writers block ......... 10 years an expat and you come to accept so much is repetitive while so much is unknown. Maybe I'm ready to just settle? Maybe I'm over moving and starting over. Maybe there's not much more to be said and if I just blog about personal stuff it's more like a diary and I'm sharing way too much and the reason for the blog in the first place is lost in self indulgence.

I could simply go back thru the archives and rehash, maybe update the 'pre summer' blog themes, cos really they don't change - people moving on, people arriving, making friends, sharing summer holiday ideas and tips, maybe even a few photos of what we get up to. The first day of school chats, orientation, suggestions on getting involved, making friends, girl-dating etc.

Groundhogs day for expats.

How's your summer shaping up?
What plans do you have?
If it's winter where you are, how are you coping?

Promise to chat with you here more often, and I hope you'll join us over on Facebook.

With friendship

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