Not so long ago, I was a single showbiz reporter. Life was a free bar, a blur of canapés and celebrity gossip.
Cut through me and I’d read ‘City Girl’ – leaving Dundee at 18 for uni in Edinburgh, then journalism training in London followed by Glasgow, Manchester, Sydney and back to London.
Three and a half years ago I married and now have one and two-year-old boys.
And we have moved into a house we built after bulldozing a field in the middle of the countryside.
Somewhere between Perth and Dundee, with hills and trees, pheasants, eagles, deer, horses as our only neighbours.
I saw the concerned look on the faces of friends when I told them of our plan to build in the countryside. Wouldn’t it be a bit of a, em, change?
It sure has but it’s the best thing for us – as a family.
The other day we stepped outside to sledge in the snow (on top of hills, we seem to have our own weather forecast..drive just a minute away and there hasn’t been a snowflake) without accompanying hour-long preparation of paraphernalia to take to a park, followed by car seat tantrums.
I can’t wait for Summer – to pass farm sheds and buy all sorts of berries famed in this area from them. Every season is beautiful here and we have stood on concrete watching them pass this last year – wondering what it will be like to finally live here in our dream home.
Now, I come down the stairs in the morning, look over the pink sunrise and Sidlaw Hills and wonder why anyone would ever want to live close to anyone? Just being there feels like therapy.
It helps that I keep up visits to London and other cities (last week Leeds for ‘Lorraine’..more of which soon) and so get a fix of urban life. I’m not done with London by a long shot but when I visit now, I’m so glad it’s solo – for carting two babes about is barely possible, and certainly not enjoyable. That said, many friends have a settled family life there and no doubt I’ll occasionally envy it.
Maybe I’m just on a high after living in a temporary flat for two and a half years while we looked for a house, didn’t find one and eventually decided to build. We have space to run, naked if we so desire.
And life being a rollercoaster, I may post something entirely different next week. I may tell you I’ve been google-earthing the Ivy and remembering how it smells. I may have had a night of no sleep and plead with you to take me away to the city.
But somehow I was ready for this. Like, really ready. If life is a book, I guess you’d tire if the chapters were all the same – or if the characters didn’t change.