Happy Monday everyone! Although, Monday is never really the happiest day. Who decided “Happy [Day of Week]” was a thing anyway?
I know I’ve been a lot more quiet over here, dampening what I think was quite a nice streak of consistent posts over 2022, so I thought it was only right to come on here and explain exactly what I’ve been up to!
I’m pretty proud of the consistency of my posting on this blog over the year. I’ve published about 38 blog posts this year (this will be 39), with at least maybe 2 more to come into year end (including a nice, beefy and reflective “year in review”).It’s week 48 – that’s a 78% hit rate. In comparison, last year I posted around 24 times, not even 50% of the weeks of the year were covered. I think now I’ve sort of hit a bit of a wall and am moving into the rhythm of the Christmas lull and seasonal slowdown.
The truth is – I’m tired! I started my new job in early August, and have only taken 1 day off since (my own fault entirely – taking a solid break this Christmas). That’s about 4 months of working consistently, and not 9-5 type hours. Mentally, starting a new job can be a lot of pressure because you just want to hit the ground running, which makes the 4 months even heavier. At the same time, I’ve been trying to stay consistent here on this blog, and launch the African/Caribbean recipe platform I’ve been working on for much of the year, which involves tons of back and forth with developers, filming, editing & writing recipes, and now trying to work on a promo video for launch in early 2022. Add on 4-5 days a week of going to the gym consistently, then just wanting to have a life – and ya’ll, did I say that I’M TIRED?!? The productivity gods that say one should be working at 100% over the Christmas period when everyone else is sleeping will kill me, but mentally, I’m feeling done with 2021. I’m ready to rest. That is quite frankly why my posts have started to be less consistent, I barely have the mental capacity to read blog posts right now, let alone write them. But I’m okay with that because I really do feel like this year… I put the work in.
A short stint of travelling
My last trip pre-COVID was in February 2020, and I didn’t go away again until July 2021 when I set off to Ibiza during my gardening leave/period of fun employment. At the time I needed a pre-departure test and certificate to get into Spain and to get back to the UK, I then also had to do another test on or before Day 2 upon arrival. Not to mention, whilst I was in Ibiza, the UK Gov put it on their “red list”, so it really felt like we made it back in the UK by the skin of our teeth. To put it in plain words – it was really stressful travelling to Ibiza.
From August onwards, it felt like the world started to resemble some sort of normality again when it came to travel. I went to Copenhagen and Stockholm for a work trip back in October, and all I needed to do was a test on or before Day 2 of arrival in the UK – no quarantine (plus vaccine certificate). Whilst I did what was required, I have to say – nobody was even checking this stuff.
The stint was short lived, and with the new variant cropping up again recently, new restrictions have been popping up left right and centre. I did still end up going on a work trip just this past week to Stavanger in Norway, but that now required a Day 2 test and quarantine upon arrival until the negative result (luckily, I did the test as soon as I arrived and got the same day results so no quarantine really needed, but also renders the whole thing pointless for my 1 night stay in Norway… no?). Now, we need a pre-departure test just to get into the UK, the Gov is also chucking anyone back on their red list, and charging £2,000 to stay in absolute shithole “quarantine hotels”. I say all this to say say that to say – I think my travel is pretty much done for at least a few months again – but it was good whilst it lasted. The good thing is, the Omnicron variant sees to be pretty mild. If we have just mild variants to worry about – sort of like the flu – that sounds good to me.
I hope that at least sort of explains my mental absence!