I wrote back in May that I had a summer of adventure planned.
I must say that I have started it very well indeed.
I spent last week in Ireland.
It was the first time in a long time that I was just home to see my family and some friends.
I met so many cousins, aunts and uncles, my granny and of course I got to spend a lot of time with my Dad, just travelling around the countryside talking about our family history, looking at the graves of various ancestors and learning about some of the great achievements made by my great, great grandfather.
I loved the week, it was so wonderful to catch up with family members I haven't seen in far too long, we looked at old photos, caught up on my life and on theirs. It was lovely.
I drank more tea than I did in the 12 months prior to the visit, and I have been in more graveyards than I was in that same time frame and I loved it.
As always, I get a sense of longing when I go back. Not because I want to live in Ireland. I don't.
It is when I get to spend time with all my little cousins, who are never as small as I imagine them to be in reality. I often reflect back to the time when the were like my little baby army, hanging onto my every word, running and chasing me around our Granny's Garden, giving me hugs and cuddles and telling me stories that contained the phrase 'and do you know what?', far too many times.
I was only there for a few hours, and I was out of practice of how to manage that many kids together! Crocodile tears confused me, the lingo made me feel totally out of touch, and I swear to god, what is the craic with all this 'dabbing'... WHERE HAS IT COME FROM???
I loved every second of it.
I was told frequently how well I was looking. Now, I know that it is customary to say that when you haven't seen someone in a while. I come from a family where such niceties are often pushed to the side for truth. In its own weird way it is nice but the thing is when you are given a compliment you take it a bit better! A lot of people I met would not have seen me in a year. I would have still been stressed out of my gills in Sainsburys, so it was interesting that they saw a difference in me.
I know what the difference is.
The difference is that while I still give my job 100% (you know how much I despise it when people say they give more than 100% ...IT IS NOT POSSIBLE), my job is no longer 100% of my life.
I am working really hard on that this summer.
I have started to dig out really simple pleasures
I am learning how to drive
I got my fairy tattoo.
I have fallen deeply in love with my fairy tattoo
I have started to follow Formula One again. I forgot how much of a thrill it gave me!
I am writing again. Properly writing not just blogging. It cleanses my mind.
I have started to make friends here, outside of work.
I have started to bake again!
There is a lot of change happening over the next few months. Two of my favourite people left Aberdeen within a week of each other this week. Another two are leaving at the end of the summer. I am rather sad about it all. Lou of the old would be freaking out. I am not.
I had some friends up to visit this week which highlighted that distance is only a factor if you make it a factor.
Everyone has a journey and there are times when our journeys run parallel. How long they run alongside each other is anyone's guess, but what is important is not to worry about the time but remember the memories created. Sometimes it would be lovely to look in a crystal ball and see what lies ahead, especially when life seems to be pulling you down.
Personally, I don't think I would want to know where I will be in 2 years time. Well, I will be in Aberdeen, I want to give myself enough time to influence my store but I don't know what else will be happening in my life. What I have learnt so far this summer is that the biggest influence on my life is me. I come from a line of strong people who depended on their own tenacity to succeed.
I am looking forward to seeing where the rest of the summer goes even if it does involve a few teary 'Goodbyes'.