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Well. That was a whirlwind couple of months. We are now pretty well ensconced in a rental place in Didcot while they finish building our new house, and the Brighton house is sold. Jobs have started, I'm remembering the joy of a regular payday, and I still haven't quite finished the thesis. It's a little bit like the end of the Masters, and I'll probably feel much the same way when I do get it done (although I won't spend time in the garden afterwards).

The funny thing about what we've just had to do is that I sort of knew it was pending. My student registration is up at the end of September, so I couldn't keep going the way I had been. It's just been really hard to keep that in mind whilst not being able to do anything to prepare for the next steps. I've already steamed past at least 3 (somewhat unrealistic in hindsight) self-imposed deadlines, and I really did think I'd get the thesis done before I looked for work.

Still, these things happen. But the blur that the summer has become has not left a lot of space for contemplation. I've been asked what I'd miss from Brighton, and I honestly couldn't think.

I have never fallen for Brighton. That's ok, there are plenty of people who have, it won't miss me. But it seems I'm an inland kind of girl. The things that I enjoyed on my ride home over the hill were watching the wheat ripple in the wind, seeing the swifts (I think) playing over the top of it, and the rabbits scampering back across the path as I disturbed their nibbling at the field edges. Although when I used to commute along the sea edge I did enjoy the odd sunset, by and large the section I looked forward to was the field of horses and rabbits once I got inland a bit.


Although I've enjoyed the views I get of Falmer and over the fields to Lewes, I won't miss the hill that provides me with those views for an instant. It's made me much stronger, but it's come close to killing me on occasion too! I might miss my garden, but I've made big mistakes that need a fair bit of work to rectify, and every single time I carried my bike up those steps I end up with new bruises. Again, I've learnt a lot from doing it. Interestingly, one of the things I've learnt is that if I want to keep doing all my other hobbies and have to keep going to work then that garden was slightly too big. I never expected to say that!

Front garden

I will miss our fire. But I'm hoping that the house we're eventually moving to will be properly insulated and warm, and we won't need one. We're getting a conservatory instead, so hopefully I can lift my winter spirits by getting some light in that (at the weekends, anyway).

The thing I will miss the most is the people. The networks we've built up. More than just friends, all those weak ties too. The people at parkrun who know us just to smile at, or have a brief chat with. The people who turn up to knitting once in a blue moon. But the wonders of social media mean there's a good chance that the best will remain in touch even if we don't see each other so often, and with just a few exceptions we've actually moved closer to a great many of our friends.

Fingers crossed, but this might just work.

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