Sunday, August 25, 2013

Home sweet home

It is a truth universally acknowledged (even in secret) that there is nothing worse that other people's travel photos, except perhaps other people's travel stories. So as much as I am tempted to mark the end of our grand adventures abroad with an endless parade of photos and a stream-of-consciousness piece about the joys of frolicking around Europe for two months, I'm going to restrain myself. I'm going to pretend that we've just bumped into each other:

You: 'Oh, so you're back. Did you have a good time?'
Me: 'Yeah, got back last Thursday. We had the best time ever. Honestly, it was just fantastic. We...'
You (eyes glazing over, hatred mounting): 'Oh. Great. Oh look, I have to go... (rushes off)

Jetlag, what jetlag?
We ate, we drank, we caught up with old friends and made new ones, we laughed, we walked miles and miles, we watched my beautiful niece marry her lovely partner, we read thousands of stories, did oodles of colouring-in and dragged the Small Girl away from every playground/carousel/toy shop/ice cream merchant in greater London/Paris/Berlin/Hong Kong. Every now and then, just to make sure I remembered how, I cooked. Or at the very least I pottered around in a strange kitchen, enjoying the novelty of it all.

Kreuzberg, Berlin, August 2013
Best of all, I got to do it with these two. I won't pretend that there was never a cross word between us (and, I do admit that on day two, crippled by jetlag and the sudden switch from 9C to 33C in temperature, I did think, 'what have we done?! This is a terrible idea!') but we actually had a ball. Aren't they great?

Now though, it's all about channelling that holiday love into catching up with normal life. I'm certainly not expecting any sympathy, but it is REALLY hard returning to the daily grind. I feel like I'm acting out the lyrics in that Talking Heads song:
"And you may ask yourself
How do I work this?
And you may ask yourself
Where is that large automobile?
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful house!
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful wife!"
I can't use the jetlag excuse any longer but I am still not match fit in the kitchen. Tonight I made sushi that would make Jiro Ono cry, while yesterday I decapitated a silicon spatula by absentmindedly sticking it into a running food processor. On Friday I made my first loaf of bread in two months and forgot the salt. But, like the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, I'm getting there. Slowly.

In the meantime, what I'm really dying to hear is what you've been up to in my absence. No, really, I am! What's the best - and the worst - thing that's happened to you in the last two months? Fill me in!
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  1. Welcome home Lucy. Nice to hear from you Sounds like a wonderful holiday. I am one of those crazy people who loves holiday photos (provided they aren't just all of the one mountain or of drunken tour groups).

    And here? Lots of chocolates, sourdough bread and doughnuts at our house to see us through winter. Oh that sounds terribly unhealthy. There have been stews and vegan cheese sauces too. Better?

    1. Chocolates? Sourdough? Donuts? What's your address again?

  2. Can't believe you were so close and we didn't meet!! Gutted but looking forward to some new recipes from you!

  3. Welcome back.
    Now you may be jetlagged but I think you're just teasing us when you call Once In A Lifetime a Simple Minds song. Who can forget Mr Byrne in that oversized suit in the Stop Making Sense film?
    And there is something worse than travel photos and stories - it's travel films. Oh how I have suffered...
    What's happened in the last two months? We've been letting the days go by waiting for you to get back obviously. Same as it ever was.

    1. Argh! You're right, of course - I am such a fool. I had to sing the whole song to myself to remember what it was called before I looked for the lyrics - obviously I'm the simple minded one. Let the water hold me down, etc. I'm glad you are as sharp-witted as ever. Those travel films must be good for something!

  4. Oh Lucy, what a fabulous holiday - two whole months is just wonderful. So glad you had a great time. Good to see you back of course and we wouldn't mind a little travel story and a photo or two - honest!

    The best and worst thing for me is that I've been made redundant from December - so no money but maybe new opportunities.

    1. Oh, I am sorry to hear that - there's a lot of that going around at the moment, isn't there? Just think of all the lovely time you'll have to devote to chocolate while you're waiting for the perfect opportunity to present itself...

  5. What a great trip! (And I do like trip photos, honest!) And a great song. So glad I discovered your blog.

  6. Welcome back Lucy. I'm dying to hear all about everything, especially Berlin. I've never been there but keep hearing about all these creative people leaving London to live there. I'm with everyone on the photo's too.

    Two months is a long time...what an amazing experience. You all look good on it. But I know it's hard to come back down to earth. We were only away for a week and I keep forgetting to cook. I got so used to be out all day and all night.

    ...must go make supper...

  7. Welcome back to the blogosphere. Sometimes the best experiences are best kept with those people who you experience them with. I will of course be demanding full details when I see you to top up my fix of the northern hemisphere. Whilst you've been away having fun we've been surfing the earth here in Wellington which would have been fun had it not been such a reminder of getting all shook up in Christchurch once before. Best for me was finally finding a proper flourless cake recipe book full of wonderful cakes and desserts from Austria and Vienna. Now all I need to do is master the baking part :o)

  8. welcome back! that photo of you in the cafe is so elegant ... no touristy looks there. it will be great to read how your travels inform your cooking and eating now you are back home.

  9. Not a fellow blogger but have read your blog from front to back and have been checking each week to see if you're back! Ohoh that sounds a bit creepy doesn't it?! Definitely my favourite food blog and great to hear you had a fabulous time! From KiwiLass in Brisbane :)


Hello - thanks for stopping by. If this was real life I'd make you a cup of tea and open the biscuit tin, but in lieu of those things, let's have a chat anyway...