Welcome to ‘The Chronicles of a Reluctant Housewife’ where I document my love/hate relationship with my current occupation. Join me as I attempt to find a balance between what I think I want and what I do from day to day.
I know I promised a post about my annoyance of the expectation of babies now that we are hitched, but there is so much material there, it isn’t going anywhere. Today I want to talk about some of the better aspects of being a housewife in London. Namely, enjoying the one sunny day in the past six months and mid-afternoon shopping.
Yesterday I met up with a girlfriend for a day out. She is in the final painful throes of her thesis and I am, well, free. We decided to go the National Gallery and check out the top 30 ‘must-see’ paintings. I added a side trip to Regent’s Street as I had to check out a shop for my sister-in-law.
We met in Trafalgar Square at the fourth plinth (how London is that?!). It happened to be a gorgeous day. Blue sky, bright sun sparkling off the fountains in the square and hundreds of tourists taking photos. (I made it into at least three photos on my short walk across the square). It was such a beautiful day that we almost didn’t want to head inside.
At this point I want to point out that I had put together an outfit that I was very proud of. It wasn’t too fancy and I probably have worn a very similar outfit 11 pounds ago, but for some reason, today, I was feeling very good about it. And really, as every woman knows, it makes all the difference to the day. I may very well have been strutting a bit across the square. (The playlist on the iphone doesn’t hurt. I frequently find myself walking a bit taller and with more purpose with particular songs).
I was dying for a coffee. It was noon and usually a coffee at this point would mean not only unnecessary points but also a sleepless night, but damn it, we were going to sit down and have a chat over coffee in a sunny café. It was my day out. So we did and caught up a bit before heading into the gallery.
Up until this point, my only experience with the National gallery was the movie Wild Target. We wondered and pondered the top 30. Some we agreed with, others we weren’t feeling and we discovered a few others that, in our opinion, should be substituted in. And then I had a moment. We were in a room with Van Gough’s sunflowers, Monet’s water lilies and a lot of kids in uniform. I changed direction to avoid the uniforms and saw an oddly familiar face across the room. It was a little red-headed kid cradling a bird. I first met this kid at my grandmother’s house. It was like running into a childhood friend in a crowd you never expected to see again. I was drawn to it, examining the brush strokes, noticing the artist’s name scrawled in the background (who knew it was Picasso?) and trying to work up some awe. But I could only muster memories of my Gramma’s house. As beautiful as the original is, I prefer my original.
We skipped 5 of the top 30 (neither of us are into grotesque religious paintings) and headed to the Crypt Café in St-Martin-in-the-Field for excellent soup and conversation. When we emerged at 3:15pm, IT WAS STILL SUNNY OUT and we headed for Regent’s Street via Chinatown and Piccadilly Circus.
The shop didn’t have the items my sister-in-law was looking for but we hung around to do a little window (and tactile) shopping. That’s when we discovered the sale room. An entire room of numerous styles and sizes all at prices discounted 50% or more!!!!! I grabbed four dresses and headed to the dressing room with great light and (I suspect) skinny mirrors. Everything fit. Let me repeat that, in case you missed it, EVERYTHING FIT!!!! I bought two of the four items (almost a third, but the dress was a little too Houlihan for my taste) and signed up for a loyalty card. And then, to top it all off and make the day that much better, my bus showed up just as I exited the tube station. HELLO!!!! It was like the Housewife Gods were smiling on me all day!!!
Then I got home and the power cut off. The gods always test you after smiling on you. This was an excellent opportunity to research a ‘How to cook dinner during a power cut when your gas stove and boiler are electrically powered without blowing yourself up’ post. We went out for Mexican.