Randomly from the Sky

This is a bit late now but it’s time to catch up, so let’s catch up. 

In my last, long time ago post of November 2020, I briefly mentioned some of the craziness that had been going on in my life during lockdown

Fast forward to today and here I am living in Ireland!!! I don’t even know where to begin, why did we do this and why Ireland? So many people ask me this. 

So….no, this move was not for the same reason as of most young families – they move because of their small children (schools and education etcetera etcetera) our children are grown up and young independent adults and they are still back home. It was obviously not about small children but it was to be close to our children. You see, they had been saying for some time that they wanted to travel more and wanted to experience living and working in Europe, they still say that and will do it when the time is right for them. 

We knew that, one day, the day would come and we would want to move to be as close to them as possible. We shocked ourselves and the boys for sure, when they realised shucks these two old farts are doing this move before us. They are leaving us before we leave them, it’s not the other way around!! 

We had been thinking of selling our house and downsizing for some time, started talking about having a smaller place. Or buying somewhere where we could retire….on our holidays the visits to small dorps were always the most appealing to me. That’s where I wanted to settle one day, where ever peace & quiet lived, and preferably near the ocean. 

Many conversations later and I don’t even know how we got to this stage the idea of leaving South Africa appeared. And so we decided to come to Europe to be close to family, 90% of them living this side of the world and the other 10% in South Africa and Australia. 

So why Ireland? 

Well why not?

It is in Europe (hahaha) it’s English speaking and it has sheep. It has mountains, cliffs, beaches, castles, great accents and some confusing not so great ones. Potatoes, and lots of sheep. Damn, everywhere you look there is a green field with sheep on it. Literally. And of course the fantastic weather (she says with some sarcasm).

We visited Ireland in March 2020, got back home and painted our house. We put it up on the market and it sold so quickly. We sold furniture and we started packing, bubble and cling wrap everywhere and 103 boxes later our belongings were packed and shipped. There was no turning back. We were emigrating. I get hives just saying this. 

Husband left for Ireland in September and suddenly I was left alone in an empty house. My younger boy, our dog and the echo of an empty house, our last few nights alone. 

It was the most insanely stressful time of my life and I don’t know how I survived this period in my life. But survive I did!!

Anyhoo we made it here and now that we are here the kids can say they have a place to stay in Europe, as soon as bloody covid lets us travel.

I remember once reading that moving house or building/construction of your house was up there as one of the most stressful life events. I did a quick google search and actually can’t find anything that says that, it seems the list of most stressful life events has changed a lot in the last few years. Which makes sense. 

But in my search I found this image, which I think is very funny unless it’s not funny!  

 

Three life lessons from my last work year

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You can never be too prepared
I’m a to-do list person, but I never stick to them. I also don’t know, the day after, what do I do today with the tasks I didn’t complete yesterday? Do I re-write and start a new to-do list?
But I watched some of my colleagues and they taught me how important it was to be prepared for every part of my job. From meetings, to reports, invoices, to creating purchase orders, replying to urgent emails and everything in between. I learnt that being over-prepared could really help me stand out and be present. It’s a sense of accomplishment to finish and cross tasks off that list. Reaching small goals.

Follow your heart
And when I typed this little sentence out I said it really slowly (in my mind), slow motion, like…

f o l l o w   y o u r   h e a r t.

I embarked on a journey that has taken me out of my comfort zone into an unfamiliar space. A friend called me brave and daring when I told her, more than a year ago, what I was about to start. In November 2018, I started with a fresh look and all the wonderful possibilities it could hold. I started a new second job! Was it worth it? For me it was! Although I am not sure how the rest of my team felt about sharing me…. I learnt so much and have added something very valuable to my personal life and my career life. I’m grateful and happy!

Manage up
When you report to so many people, they manage you. Having a healthy positive relationship with all your bosses makes work life so much easier.
I’m not there for the canteen food and the beautiful glass building. Job satisfaction for me comes from enjoying my job, I love what I do. I love the people I work with and having a good boss and good relationship with her (them) matters a lot! It took a whole year to learn to work independently and far from most of them only seeing them once a week and still managing to stay present.

Gain power through positivity, getting through a tough day or year and dealing with a demanding job or project is all about maintaining a positive and optimistic mindset. That’s how we should look at 2020….Only time will tell, I’m going into it with the same positive attitude and I will leave it in God’s hands.

Something else I learned last year I talk to Him constantly and ask for His guidance before every hard task that I have to face ♥

A world of possibilities

Isn’t it funny, someone pointed out to me last week that I have answered the hero’s call.  For me it was just time to let go of the path I had planned for myself, a world of safety and where I was comfortable and to follow a new path that is waiting for me.

One day I just knew what I had to do, the voices in my head tried to scare me away but I didn’t listen.

Today I started with a fresh look to the future and all the wonderful possibilities it holds.

Today I started a new second job!

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That’s right I have two jobs!  One of them is in an art gallery!  ♥

Before and After

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A small place, a home away from home for my big boy. I had some moments of regret and disappointment, many moments of total disgust and some days I broke down into tears at the mess that was before me.

You do not need to live in a place that looks like it should be in the cover of a designer magazine, but your home should not look like a pig pen! The people pigs that lived in this place were not normal people more like a group of hogs. Papa hog, mama hog and some piglets, one being a baby. The state of the kitchen was just something out of a scary movie. Thriller! I was gagging and almost vomited once when trying to get the grime off things. No wonder the place was infested with the one thing that gives me the biggest creeps and just the word makes me break out in hives – cockroaches. The extermination company said they are German Cockroaches (say no more)

My painter who lives in a shack, said his shack was cleaner and he would not be embarrassed for me to visit him there. The cleaning lady did not believe that a woman had lived in that apartment and used that kitchen. So…if they say all of that, can you imagine the filth? I was like the white sangoma with all sorts of fumitabs, powders and potions to get rid of the bugs. During those days I had no consideration for the ozone layer. Sorry.

Everything in that place was bleached and disinfected twice. Painted. Varnished. Cleaned. Finally ready for humans to live in.

These are the before and after pictures.

BEFORE 😦

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 AFTER 🙂 looking much better471 472 473 474 481 563 689 690 691 692 695 704 711 787 828 830 831 837 841 845 849 850 863 870

There are two cupboard doors missing. We need a chest of drawers to store some of the books that are still in boxes under his desk. The little sofa has not been delivered yet. So it’s a work in progress. But it’s livable and clean.

Leaving him this time (as a third year student) felt like I was leaving him for the first time all over again…my boy all alone in his own little place…

The key

We waited for what seemed like forever for this day to arrive…

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To hold the key to a flat that Moo would occupy until the end of his studies.

The day finally arrived, and I was greeted by all sorts of things – broken items, dirt, filth, roaches and lots of emotions – disappointment, regret, anger. My stay is almost over and the makeover is almost done.

I always thought decorating was a great job and maybe it is, but that is when you walk into a clean home and you can just shop for pretty things and turn the place inside out. Makeovers are not glamorous at all and whatever we see on TV is different when you living and cleaning it in real life. Sometime next week I hope to give you some before and after shots. Let me warn you that it is not for the faint hearted or weak.

Until next week….