The two weeks (give or take) that I’ve been occupying a great little cottage in Jo’burg, have been fun and somewhat educational.
For starters, I didn’t think I’d bother much with cooking. It’s not my absolute favourite thing to do, and the idea of all that trouble for one person just seemed silly. I suppose I kind of overcame that by not cooking for one. I make enough for dinner, and leftovers for lunch the next day. And despite rationing, these are generous portions. The first Sunday I made mac ‘n cheese that saw me through dinner and lunch twice!
I’ve even cooked (rather healthy: grilled chicken, steamed veg, baked potato) on a Friday night! In the past, if we ever did bother with switching the stove on, it was to fry eggs and serve it on toast.
I honestly think I’d spend more of my free time in the kitchen – I rather enjoy baking – but it is a desperately understocked place, not just in terms of equipment like proper pots, pans, and baking tins, but also in supplies; stocking a grocery cupboard from scratch is pricier than moving allows you indulge in. I have a house warming registry at Yuppiechef if anyone cares to help me equip this part of an otherwise completely adequately furnished habitat.
Not having a bath isn’t so bad. I say this mostly because nothing I say or do is going to change the fact that I only have access to a shower. It makes me ridiculously excited for summer.
I still rather spend my time reading or listening to books while knitting/cooking/do the dishes than watching television, although I enjoy watching Monty Python (or anything else I have on DVD) while having dinner. If you’re throwing out DVDs, please throw them this way; I’m not really up for my Grey’s Anatomy collection.
I feel incredibly spoiled, returning home on a Monday to find my clean laundry neatly stacked on my couch.
My upstairs neighbour is apparently not a leathery, thick-skinned member of the big five despite sounding like it. Generally listening to my audiobook helps, except if it’s 03:00 and I’m not wearing my headphones.
The location of my home is a little inconvenient too – there’s lots of foot traffic going past, and all the nosey neighbours peek in to see what I’m up to. This only bothers me when I’m at home, so it’s not all that bad, at least.
The most important thing I need to get (even more important than the Nespresso I covet; I’ve taken to switching on the kettle the first time my alarm goes off, then quickly making coffee and crawling back under my duvet for the next 20 minutes, contemplating what to wear and savouring my caffeine fix) is a pretty foldable screen to separate my bedroom from the bathroom and to act as an additional barrier to light through the bathroom window. If I can’t find one I like (and can afford) my mom and I will attempt to make one ourselves – a craft project I’m not all that keen for.
So how have I been spending my free time so far? Well, aside from finishing two scarves, convalescing from my various ailments (touch wood, it seems to all have been mostly resolved), I’ve been taking walks around my neighbourhood, catching up a little on my favourite series (I’d probably watch more of it if I could rig my laptop to my TV, but that’s not an option), and dabbling in origami again. And of course, reading. Lots of reading since I need to catch up to my Goodreads challenge.
If you want to come over for coffee (it will be the instant stuff, unless, you know, Nespresso :P), feel free to bring cake so we can celebrate tastefully.