Monday, October 25, 2021

Everyday Awesomeness


I am writing this in Klagenfurt where I took this picture on a walk in the neighbourhood on Sunday afternoon. At the moment, autumn is presenting itself in its prettiest colours and while this is nothing new, we agreed that the leaves are particularly beautiful this year. Like this tree that reminds me of my first trip to Japan 12 years ago and which I suspect was just as beautiful in the past already. I have the theory that having had our wings clipped or horizons brought closer made us take closer looks at what is in front of our doorsteps and appreciate it more. Not the worst by-product of a global pandemic.

Monday, October 18, 2021

Yup, I've Changed

This past weekend, I spent mainly at the "Country House", i.e. Highflyer's home. This would not be such a remarkable event if it had not been for the fact that the Lord of the Manor himself was away and I chose to be there on my own...not for the first time. Two years ago, I would not have thought this possible and in fact I could not understand friends who met a partner with an address in the back of beyond and voluntarily chose to move there and commute to the big city. Well, I have no plans to give up my flat in Vienna, ever, but my attitude really has changed. Moreover, I have definitely changed. I attribute it to a combination of factors, the most important one being that I spent so many months of lockdown here and have so many happy memories of really getting to know Highflyer and realising that this is indeed the man I want to spend the rest of my life with as spending weeks together 24/7 did not result in a single argument or disagreement. Lovely company aside, I just became quite attached to this place that will forever be associated with this crazy period of all our lives. Another important factor is that what I first visited as a house with (to my taste at least) very questionable interior design choices (which were mostly the previous owners', but I didn't know that then) has now had a subtle makeover by yours truly and feels like my home as well. I treaded carefully at first, very carefully as I learnt the hard way that anything less than enthusiastic exclamations about furniture and decor can really offend some home owners so I didn't say anything, relieved that I probably would not have to spend a lot of time there. In those first months of our relationship, we mostly met in Vienna. When it soon transpired that the furniture, curtains, cushion covers, etc. had already been there and were not beloved heirlooms of Highflyer's family, I started making suggestions that met both approval and appreciation. This, combined with the fact that I have so much more space here for my hobbies, feels like having hit the jackpot and I love the generous kitchen counter space (my kitchen in Vienna is tiny) and my DIY room upstairs. Having a garden and terrace is an added bonus and something I don't have in the city so, yes, I love spending time here and now understand my friends who chose to always spend their weekends at a country home, much to my disbelief.

Monday, October 11, 2021

In an Ideal World...

...I would have a 3-day (at least) weekend and get to do my various DIY projects all day. I really love making Highflyer's home prettier and its really gratifying to see the transformation from when I suddenly moved in during Lockdown 1. He had bought the house more or less fully furnished and decorated from a family with 2 children who had emigrated to the U.S. Some of the things (like the dining and sofa tables I actually like and might have picked myself, others were exceptionally tasteless. The previous lady of the manor must have had a liking for granny-smith-apple-green and thus had curtains, carpets and pillowcases in this colour. I have gradually replaced everything with off white an by and by this house with questionable interior design choices turned into a cosy place that started to feel like mine. When I'm in Vienna, I miss the counter space of my "country kitchen" and separate office and DIY rooms. The only thing missing is enough time to enjoy it to the fullest.

Monday, October 04, 2021

Post-Epidemic Socialising


In the past 1.5 years I have mainly socialised with a handful of people, in particular during the lockdown months when all you could do was go for walks until the need for a pee drove you home again. Even now that life is mostly back to normal I have yet to get back to my previous routines and often find myself in a defensive role when some of my friends finds out I am in Vienna via my Instagram posts or, as happened last week, accidentally bumps into me. Some pre-pandemic routines (Badminton, book club) seem to have died or if not, be in a temporary (self-) induced coma. Whether I am fine with that and it was a long overdue culling none of the participants would have been able to without force majeure if you so will, or if it is just a question of laziness and general apathy, I am not quite sure yet. Without the convenient excuse of honouring society's health and safety the naked truth may sometimes be awkward and socially unacceptable.

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