Thursday, May 27, 2010

I am that woman

So I've been basically working my arse off this year. Harder than I've ever worked. I've travelled to: India, USA, Kazakhstan, Trinidad, China... and I've got trips to Greece, South Africa, Malaysia and France to do by the end of September. I've written ridiculously long and thorough reports on stupidly complex problems. I've commissioned £100k's worth of market research and worked with lawyers to solve the problem of China. Not to mention turning 30 next month, that one's going to be a kicker.

And this week a momentous change happened in my working life. I became a line manager to L. She's looking like she's not going to need 'managing' per se, but she is going to need a lot of support and attention to bring her up to speed and train her for the next 6 months to a year as this is a very new kind of work for her. She's coming to Greece so hopefully we'll have some girly bonding around the Acropolis.

In home life, Hubland has a new job (with my employer, but at different site) so we can finally move to near where I work, ending my 3 hour a day commute. So we're DIYing the house to death, hopefully to get it on the market at the start of the first proper week of June. We've sorted a week day place to crash from when Hubland starts work in July, and then we'll be able to start house hunting proper - and ye gads our budget is now up to £250k. That's a quarter of a million people.

But... thankfully... I do have the weekend off for my birthday... and we have our supercool Texan friend coming to stay in July/August so we'll do some chillaxing (Hubland hates me using that word) when she's here.

It's pretty much all good, even my health is holding up ok, it is just crazy busy.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010


Hubland and I ending up watching the documentary 'Zimbabwe's Children' last night.... we didn't mean to, most evenings we're just not up to coping with that sort of programming, however much we want to know about what is happening in the world. I'm glad we watched it as sometimes we all need to be reminded of the everyday suffering of ordinary people in places like Zimbabwe.
I'm just about to finish reading a book entitled 'Dinner with Zimbabwe' which is a psychological biography of the premier based on a series of interviews with people inside and outside of Zimbabwe that know and knew him, and even an interview with the man himself. It tries, from a psychological point of view, to understand how a shy, intelligent boy, hero of his people, became one of the world's most loathed dictators.
When I've finished I'm going to send it on to my uncle, who with my wife and cousin lived in Harare in the late 80s early 90s. Things were not easy then, I remember sending various things in the post to my aunt, including bras, but they are nothing compared with what has happened since the farm invasions in 2000. I know that what has happened in Zimbabwe has broken their hearts.
The tragedy of Zimbabwe - 1 in 7 of the population HIV positive, one of the lowest life expectancies in the world, half the population surviving only due to food aid - was a completely avoidable tragedy. The rest of the world has stood by and let it happen and that is unforgivable. Without the tacit support of its neighbouring countries (and governments further afield like China) Zimbabwe's decent into chaos would surely have been halted by now.
As Britons our hands are largely tied, with the fear that any intervention could be seen as more colonial interference. Our present Labour government, while not responsible for Mugabe's madness, contributed significantly to the descent when it refused to honour the agreements that had been made regarding compensation and land distribution by the Conservative government at the moment of independence. We also managed to communicate it through one of our least tactful citizens - Clare Short.
Despite all of this, our complicity, our responsibility, and our penchant for following other country's tragedies as they unfold, there is so little ongoing coverage of what is happening in Zimbabwe. I simply don't understand why that is.... and I'm not sure what I need to do about it.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

All over the world

Shamed by the fact that even adventuringjen with baby boo can blog I thought I'd better update this beast for any of you that check occasionally.

It has been an insane 2010 so far - with two continents covered so far, prospects of a new person to help at work, a realisation that I really can't keep up this commute... and today, a new baby born to my sister-in-law - so I'm now officially an auntie.

It doesn't look like its going to let up anytime soon... hubland has to has to has to has to has to has to has to finish the professional qualification he started over 10 years ago. His studying will hopefully be helped by the fact that I'm out of the country for one week a month for the next three months - Kazakhstan, Trinidad and China.

Life is hectic, but mostly good... just wish I had a little more energy to enjoy it!