Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Birthday blog - really just a letter to far flung friends xxx

Wow, all four of us have had birthdays since I last blogged! A few people have reminded me that I have a blog lately! Not sure if can still call it that since I only write once every few months at moment, but as it is my birthday, which means refusing to cook or clean or work, I will sum up the last few months instead.

Today I am 37. When I think back to my last birthday, spent in steamy exotic Phnom Penh eating brunch in Fresco's with a friend and buying second hand clothes from the very bustling very boiling local market... wow life has changed! It is a lot quieter and a lot colder... but still very blessed and full of colour and love.

I was woken in the dark for a birthday breakfast before school and James' leaving for work. Yes! He has a job, in a real office, in a real International NGO, the only one near us in fact, in Hereford! Hoorah, we are here to stay. James is now Learning and Advocacy Manager for Concern Universal which means he once again has to jump on his bike each day to Kington and then the bus to Hereford City - one hour on bus through gorgeous hills and countryside. After Xmas he may be able to work at home a few days each week. But he is happy and the job seems great so far.

My day today pretty much sums up my life here right now. Even my birthday gifts say a lot. The girls gave me pink wellies. And yes, I will probably wear them every day (those are Wellington Boots for the Americans out there who are not sure what I am talking about!).

This morning I taught/goaded an 87 year old woman into shoulder stand. She kept assuring me (upside down, legs straight up like a candle) that she could not do it, until I pointed out that she was already doing it. I am not sure which one of us was more excited.

After the class I had a very luxurious middle of the day coffee with my dear new friend Briony, and her gorgeous daughter, Jemima's dearest friend, Florence, who was off school. They made me flap jacks and gave me chocolates and I felt very loved. While I unfortunately do not have time out with friends each day, lovely encounters with dear friends and yoga students - young and old, - is very much part of my life here.

Then I came home to continue to try to train our crazy rescue dog who is a bit like a third child but harder to discipline, and now I have precisely one hour before collecting from school and cooking supper for the girls and their friends, so I am by the fire, my book and chocolates await me.

That is pretty much my life here - without the chocolates and reading by the fire on a work day bit! I am teaching loads of yoga, cook non stop for my hungry children, husband and father, and spend a lot of time in my wellies. I have spent the last month up to my eyeballs in apples, damsons, blackberries, figs and green beans. I have spent whole weeks making chutney and jam to keep on top of it all and I love it.

I used to have so much to say about Cambodia but really, this just about sums it up for here and now. The hedges have been cut, the birds are feasting on Autumn berries, the potatoes and corn fields are being harvested and the sun is finally shining and warming up this cold, crisp October day. The leaves are gorgeous and I love it all. I still feel most definitely home. Though today I have thought so much about all my lovely Cambodia friends who celebrated with me last year. I send lots and lots of love to you all xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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