I had a little bit of recovery time and transition there before the all-out chaos of a severe flare-up. Bedridden for much of the last year, I am excited about new possibilities and reinventing myself as a travelling designer, writer and editor. In the midst of this I have overseen a vast interior project as my parents build a future-proof extension (more about my discoveries later) and renovated my own house. As always, tradespeople who are reliable problem-solvers and nice to have around have been key, and I’m happy to be moving in at the moment, getting used to my new organisational systems and being independent again. I wrote a poem for the occasion so that the
victims recipients of my new address cards know what’s what.
The lambs are springing up upon the barley fields of Fife,
But I’m scampering to Tayside for the next scene of life
Post my attack of academia I move across the river
The postman seems relieved – no more floor samples to deliver
There’s jute, jam and journalism further from the sea
So it’s farewell to the farm life and hello to Dundee!
A watershed; I have to edit what it says on the census
(I’ve acquired a Lhasa Apso in loco parentis)
Want to see a yellow kitchen door or Jungle Room? Bingo!
My jungle’s antifungal and it’s got a flamingo.
My bathroom’s level-access while my stair lift is exquisite
And my spare room sleeps three, so I look forward to your visit!
This time I own my home, which is an incredible feeling in uncertain times and has allowed me to made adaptations and changes to my taste, which (to my mother’s initial horror) includes a Jungle Room as my main living area. Renting has left a lot of things pent up, apparently, as my first act as a homeowner was not the stairlift or the kitchen renovation but the purchase of a four-foot flamingo that I subsequently named Placido Domingo the Pink Flamingo. Once I found out that the collective noun for the flamingo is a “Flamboyance” – seriously, what could be more perfect? – I decided I needed several to express my inner fabulousness and now we have Prawnelda, the plastic watering can flamingo, and Legs McFloof, a metal garden ornament flamingo, rounding out the mantlepiece display.
The other administrative news is that I’m on the move in more ways than one – come August I’m off to New Zealand and the Cook Islands for a month. Any advice welcomed!