I’m ready for the future.

This is a real ramble. It’s the thoughts that are running through my head as the next chapter of my life: the ‘responsible adult’ joining the real, scary world begins. Or the rat race as I have started to think of it (lol)

Ah!

I have my final exam (hopefully) next Tuesday!

It’s been nearly three months since I got my exam results to say I would be resitting one of the exams in September. So much has happened. But I’m very ready to start the next chapter.

I am starting to be able to see the silver linings in it all. I was originally set on moving up to Scotland and starting my career up there with a practice. But the days after getting my results I had the overwhelming feeling that It was no longer right for me. I felt more vulnerable and valued being closer to home and family and Rosie! In a way I know I’ll regret not taking the job in Scotland, the wanderer in me will say i should have but I have a deep feeling I’m doing to right thing. It would have made it all so much tougher than it’s already going to be. I also know I have the rest of my career to move around. I know I’d like to live in and explore more of Scotland at some point.

I had a series of job interviews before and after my trip to India. Some were great, some not so great but there were plenty of jobs going which was great and made me less worried and more picky! While in India I got an email about a job going in the PDSA and an interview was organised. I had already been for an interview with them back in March to be placed in one of their hospitals. However, i wasn’t successful. I think I really wasn’t suited to the interview type and found it all a bit much but that’s another story!

But this interview suited me much better. It was one on one, I got to see the practice and meet the team. I got offered the job! So I’m moving to Gillingham in Kent! As long as I pass this exam!!

It’s exciting! It’s scary!

What i noticed with the different jobs advertised was how different the hours varied. I know actually working will be different but if the last year has taught me anything it is that i will need to pace myself well in my first year.

I’ll be under a lot of pressure this year particularly and so I know I’ll need to have a good bit of time off in between working. This job is 4 day working week with one day self study and mentoring which sounds fantastic. I wont have to work weekends for a long while. Although part of me thinks I must be lazy to want to a job that doesn’t involve long days and working weekends I also know and have seen how it affects other vets and how it would affect me.

I have seen vets so tired and deflated from the long hours and not having time to unwind and get away from it all.

There are a lot of vets leaving their jobs and the veterinary sector all together because the lifestyle just isn’t sustainable. A lot of older vets complain about the younger vets not being made of the same stuff or wanting too much but actually there are so many more demands on us these days. For one, in James Herriot’s time men were vets and their wives were generally stay at home wives, who’d look after the house and children. Now, vets today are largely women and they are also mothers, have homes to look after and just other things to bloody do. Other interests and commitments. Men do their bit somewhere in that too!! 😉

So basically careers have to take a step back when other responsibilities take a step forward. And that isn’t enough for some people but I think that’s having a healthy lifestyle and not something to be sniffed at all. Something to be recommended and understood.

I think my long term goal might be to take a job that is 4 days a week so that I can do some separate voluntary work on the 5th day or do something else like writing or painting! I wouldn’t mind working long hours on the 4 days. but having 3 days ‘off’ allows for life admin to be kept up – house stuff, commitments, emails as well as having wind down time.

I’d also really like to travel next year at some point again. spend a month maybe somewhere volunteering abroad.

I feel pressure on me from me and society to start saving lots. And I will when I can. Society tells me that having my own house is the best thing that will ever happen to me as well as getting married and having children. (hmmm…?!) And in many ways, yes, I do love the idea of Rosie and I having a little place somewhere, with a garden that we grow plants, fruits and veggies in. Somewhere we can have a dog. But actually, when I strip it all back and i remove societal pressures for a moment, I like the idea of the stability of owning a home but I’d equally be happy with a rented place if it felt secure and had a bit more leeway… Like pet ownership!

Marriage and children on the other hand (haha). Rosie and I like the idea of having some sort of a wedding at some point. We’ve talked about having a ten year anniversary and just having a big party. But meh, not the be all and end all. And children, again, never been majorly on my radar. Sometimes, i get broody. i like children but never felt keen enough to have my own, I’d prefer adoption if that was ever something I was in a position to do. When i was around 16 I got very caught up in how overpopulated the world is and I said to my 16 year old self that i would never have my own children. I’m not quite so strict about it now but I still hold on to it. I look at it more that there are already so many children on this planet that need love and support and I’d rather put my energy into them than creating more. (If I was to go down that path at all)

I also feel pressure from myself to save for retirement. I don’t like the idea of being retired and not able to do the things I couldn’t do while working because of financial restrictions. And i just mean going traveling and hobbies and just being able to fund it all. One of my friends burst my bubble a little the other day when I mentioned my emphasis on retirement over say saving to buy a house. And she said, “well, that’s if you live long enough.” And It was a pretty big downer for a moment but then I realised in many ways she was right. You do need to be prepared for the future but also don’t just save, save and save for future plans. Do things now, while you really can.

The job I have just accepted is a charity and means I’ll be earning a decent bit less than my other vet friends. To be honest, money didn’t come into it all in making my decision. I knew the scheme would be ideal for me so it was a no brainer. I knew that that did actually put off a fair few people from applying for it though.

But in a way I am quite proud that I didn’t give the salary a seconds thought. I think it is so easy to be caught up in money and having ‘things’. I’m finding it difficult even now that I’m off of Facebook and Instagram that a lot of people i know around my age group are beginning to buy a house/flat etc. I have to remind myself that this isn’t actually something I’m ready for or want. But naturally it makes you feel that they are more successful than you. It does make you feel small and it’s silly.

I have only ever really wanted to have enough money to not have to worry about money too often. And so for a young person with very few responsibilities I will have a really good income. I’ll be able to pay rent and food and all the rest and still have money to save for holidays, a house/retirement etc and have a rainy day fund (because 1) my wonderful car wont be fault free forever!) 😦

But i just wont have as much as other people. And i do have to remind myself not to let it bother me.

Rosie struggles with it as well. Being freelance can be difficult in terms of income because it’s so sporadic and she does ask me whether she should go and get a more reliable job. And I say no. Especially now. We have few responsibilities and are lucky enough to have family that could support us to an extent if ever we were really struggling. Therefore we should absolutely make the most of the position and see where the careers we want could lead us. She manages really well i think and gets by well on her current income and to pack it all in for just a bit more cash at the end of the month to me isn’t worth losing the happiness she gets when she plays. It’s a clear answer for me but I understand how it can make you feel guilty or doubt if it’s the right path to be taking.

And yes, It is very different if you are supporting other people, if you have children or elderly relatives or if in fact you have a mortgage and things to pay off. And I think that in a way is what worries me about buying and having things. You suddenly have more to lose and lots more to worry about!

I mentioned the term rat-race at the beginning of this blog and it’s been going through my head recently because of all of the societal pressures that are suddenly becoming more focused.

This need to work hard to save loads of money to buy a house and then to marry and then to have 2.3 children and a yearly holiday and a nice car…Then to work even harder to pay for it all and to look successful in every aspect of your life and would you know the cycle keeps continuing.

The ‘working hard’ is key – what is that ? Is it busting a gut for the largest salary possible? That’s what i think people mean by it. Is it spending all of your time trying to network and finish emails and just needing to look busy constantly so that you look successful?

I find myself just resisting all of it. I will work hard in whatever job I do, but I wont bust a gut. I am sure I will go above and beyond to help and do my bit but I will also find time for myself to enjoy myself and not feel under pressure to look good and successful to other people.

I feel like I just want to have done my bit, contributed and have felt like I left a positive mark on the world.

It isn’t having a nice house a nice car, lots of money that’s the problem, it’s the sacrifices made to have them. And the pressure we’re under to feel that we need or should have them to be successful.

Success. ? Making it to birth, making it through childhood, living a life is successful. It took a lot of evolution and competition to get here. Appreciating that and doing what you can to make way for the next generation of successors sounds more successful than competing with a neighbour for the biggest car, most Instagram likes. Well that’s what I think anyway 😉

I reckon we should listen to our natural default setting more. Go back to the dreams of our 8 year old selves and ask if behind the masks and sociatal pressure’s we actually want anything different now?

Rebecca x

Rebecca’s 8 year old dreams

Save animals
Explore/discover
Be a scientist
Be happy. Laugh lots.

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Looking back.

It’s scary how two months have gone since my last blog post. My initial thoughts were that It has just been an empty kind of two months. It has felt like I’ve just been eating, working and sleeping. The eating and sleeping bits have been great! But I haven’t enjoyed them as much as I could have because of the working bit.

I don’t have much to complain about, I’m just being worked hard at the moment. I want more freedom, I want to know what the day is going to bring and when I will be able to go home. I’m quite fed up of being a student and I’d like a job and to stay in one place for more than two weeks is a dream at the moment. It feels like i’m tip-toeing around trying to please everyone and even pander to their whims just to pass each week. I just can’t be arsed anymore. I feel like maybe I don’t need to prove myself anymore. It’s a nice feeling in a way.

But here are some of the good things I’ve been up to in the past two months!

Dorset

I spent a month around Dorset on some farm placements. I explored Chesil beach before spending the weekend with Rosie and her family. We visited the beautiful Sherborne Castle.

I spent two weeks with two other vet students in Shitterton. It was really nice to get to know the two of them. It was a hard two weeks with tons of work to do but we still managed to have fun and visit a couple of pubs while we were there.

I have also discovered Huel, a meal replacement type thing. It’s now what I have for lunch. It is vegan and supposed to have all the dietary requirements needed. I’m usually and was at first against the idea of it. But actually I bought it in the end to make it easier to travel and not to have to worry about lunch, to be able to monitor how much i’m eating better and i think really, i just wanted some control over what I was eating and in my life in general! It has been a blessing regards lunched. Just three scoops and add some water and i’m good to go. I don’t have to get up early or make sure I get to a shop or buy anything. Just that extra thing to not worry about. Possibly lazy, but I’ll take it.

Utrecht

I visited Utrecht university for another farm placement. It was a very long and tiring and sometimes hard two weeks. But it was fantastic getting to spend a decent amount of time in one European city. It was great to get to know a place. We cycled into the campus every morning and evening and checked out a decent number of pubs.. again.

I love stroopwafels! Ah!

Rosie even managed to come and visit at the weekend and we rented a gorgeously cute little apartment looking over one of the canals. It was lovely. We all checked out the gay bars one night forgetting how bad we are at drinking these days.

We did all the touristy classics going up the tower and going on a boat trip.

 

London

But I was glad to finally get home and chill with the Doggo!

I’m working in central london for three weeks and got to stay with Rosie for nearly two of them which was great fun! One Tuesday evening we bought tickets to a book talk with Ali Smith at Foyles. We’re both big fans of her work and just her in general. She is so grounded and fair and honest and sees the world in such an incredible way.

One evening we watched a documentary about an anorexia clinic in London. Rosie knew of someone who had been into one. It was a hard documentary to watch. But a very thought provoking one. I have had some issues in the past that could have been a lot lot worse and I watched the people in the clinic and wondered why I seemed able to avoid getting as low as they were. Why i seem able to get by by knowing my signs and managing them yet others can’t and suffer so much more.  This will have to be another blog sometime in the future. It just made us think about personality types and how difficult, demanding, intimidating and out of control our world is at the moment.

Glasgow

Rosie went to Glasgow while I still had work in London. She went up for a concert on Saturday evening. I joined her on Friday evening and we had some of the weekend to chill and explore Glasgow together. Rosie knows the place a little from previous work but i had never been. It was a beautiful weekend which probably made it even better, but I loved Glasgow. It has some amazing places and spaces, parks and museums, shops and resturants. We got a hostel looking over a park and it was beautiful. Crisp air with everyone walking around in scarves, lots of doggies, we could see ourselves living there. Maybe one day!

On the evening of the concert we met up just before to grab some dinner. We went to a Southern India restaurant which was delish! Never eaten Southern before, we tried different chapatis and a lamb curry and it was so yum!

I was a bit of a soppy git and bought Rosie some roses and a keyring with out photo on it before the concert. It was a big deal for her and I could tell she was quite nervous. But she was fantastic and pleased with how it went. She definitely underestimates how good she is, but I feel like most people do when they’re trying to get somewhere. It’s hard to know what people expect and want and are looking for… in many careers i think.

After the concert we checked out a couple of gay bars and got ridiculously tipsy and giddy and no drinks whatsoever (cheap dates) and headed back picking up some  Belgian fries on the way home 😛 nommm

In the morning we checked out one of the restaurants Rosie has been too for breakfast and I had a full English which was FULL ON.

Glasgow

London

Back to London. I Stayed at Rosie’s for a couple more days and we had dinner with some of her friends and made mince pies one evening! We were both doing different hours to each other so often we didn’t have much time in the mornings or evenings but I love spending an hour or two just chilling with her or even just talking about our day in bed before one of us falls asleep first.

I’ve got into crosswords and puzzles again, first time since I was a kid! The guys in my placement group have been picking up the newspaper on the train and we’ve been working on them during lunch. It made me want to go back home and finish them with Rosie. We spent a good couple of evenings working on them. We are rubbishly awful at the cryptic ones though!

I had the first Amnesty talk this week too! It wasn’t very well attended but it was really interesting to hear more about what Amnesty does and make some connections. I feel like our group can only get better and stronger as it’s only early days yet. It’s just a shame that I’m not on campus very often and so it is difficult to meet up regularly or get bits done.

Rosie has gone back up to Scotland for more work so I’m currently staying with my grandparents who live in central London too. I’m so lucky to have family in London.

I went to watch Young Marx last night at the Bridge theatre. It is supposed to be one of, if not the newest theatre in London. It was great, a fantastic theatre with leather seats. Different. Doesn’t have the same detail architecture that the older theatres have. But a nice big stage!. The play was great, really funny, definitely recommend. I got a £15 ticket and it was definitely worth it and I could see most of the stage, all of the action anyway!.

The story outline kind of annoyed me though. Marx in the play was an absolute arsehole that used and was awful to his friends, family and supporters and yet he got away with it because he was a genius. I don’t know. Just rung of ‘boys will be boys’ and that’s rubbish. It was funny and lighthearted but not a great message. There was remorse at the end of course. And it was a comedy but just a bit samey really.

You can see a photo of one of the cuties that I helped look after while being in London. It has reminded me of how much I enjoy small animal work. I really do enjoy both small and farm. And I wonder whether I could just do small animal. It would be quite a lot easier than finding somewhere that has both. Would I regret only going into one and not the other though?

 

So yeah! Actually really an amazing couple of months! Haha! I really don’t have anything to complain about. Just haven’t had a massive amount of time to myself to be able to write a blog I guess! I have basically been working and then chilling to recoup for the following day.

Na, yeah I have nothing to complain about in life.

I do feel used by my university and I am fed up of being a student but diddums! I’ll suck it up and keep going. There isn’t really a huge amount left!

Glad I have written this blog. Need to remind myself actually how great things are for me. You so easily get absorbed into the problems of you’re own life and forget how easy you actually have it.

Write again, sooner next time.

Rebecca x

4 days in Brighton <3

Rosie and I love food. V possibly more than each other lol.. #sorrynotsorry
We needed to get away and inspired by a cycle ride with her family Rosie suggested Brighton: sea, cycling and food. Perfect!

We booked a hostel in town. ‘Home’. Cheap and basic and all we needed. Our room was super clean and really quite cute actually and though a pub it was relatively quiet. Most of the noise was drunk passersby and the pigeon babies living outside our window. .

We arrived early Monday morning and looked for somewhere for brunch!
We usually do some googling for recommendations, get an idea of what’s around but a mooch is equally great. We walked around North Lanes first as this was closest to the hostel. We found three potentials and on returning to the first we found the fourth potential and ate there. It had seating outside which was the sale point as it was an absolutely beautiful day.
We had a mini full veggie English. It was a vegetarian cafe. At Wai Kika Moo Kau

It was really good!

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Pesto on the tomato and garlicky mushrooms. Great bread and sausages.  And potatoes. Felt surprisingly healthy and wholesome and we were bloody full!

We also got a coffee and a banana and peanut butter milkshake. It actually felt quite healthy too! Not thick and made or ice cream but light and delicate. Nomm.

On to the beach via a couple of the cute shops.  We aren’t ones for shopping for things we actually need but we like browsing quirky things!
And books!
Beach! Was busy. Hot bank holiday Monday so no surprise there haha. But it wasn’t too bad. We had a bottle of prosecco that Rosie brought so that helped. 😉

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We spent most of the day there. Stopped for an ice cream. We swam, read and dozed in the sun.  I forgot how much I love swimming in the sea! I think when I was in the sea, by myself and just floating there I realised I was actually on holiday, not working, allowed not to study and I just relaxed and felt so peaceful!

We chose Moshimo a Japanese restaurant recommended for dinner. The website said that they were keen to promote sustainable fishing which is a definite selling point!
They had an outdoor and indoor bit. And we sat outside and it was it was really inventive. Just tables but the seats were benches that all joined up essentially. So that it gave the impression that diners were eating on the ground with their legs crossed!

We didn’t take any photos!

We had. Miso soup, vegetarian and fish sushi. Inc salmon and avocado and the vegetarian had tofu, sundried tomatoes and cucumber which was surprisingly good! The aubergine dengaku was amazing. The miso sauce was rich and creamy and I can’t quite place the flavour. There was definitely some sake in there too

Tuesday!

The hostel had a big bowl of pancake batter to make your own pancakes in the morning which was fun and lots of nutella, so we bought bananas too. Nom. Yeah man

We had a big massive mooch day. Slowly working our way through the cute shops and letting ourselves get lost with the other tourists and locals. Was so nice to forget about life!

I love potatoes.

We found a cafe ‘Joes’ that was renowned for it’s hashes. We had to go.

It was far out of town, up hills in the heat but so so worth it.

We both went for the Spanish hash, I had vegetarian with mushrooms, vege sausage, egg. Rosie had meat which had same + chorizo on it 😛 . And all topped with cheese of course.

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Was soo good! One of the only dishes I’ve seen Rosie not able to finish xD

Dinner was probably our downfall. I had even more potatoes lol. But we really enjoyed this restaurant – The Regency – the last time we were here. And we wanted to try  the mussels.

I hadn’t tried scallops before so we got some to start. In garlic sauce. They’re great! Meaty and a lot less fishy than I expected. And the garlic sauce! nom!

Definitely a carb and heavy overload day. We didn’t deal well with this amount of food lol.

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Wednesday!

Couldn’t cope with pancakes that morning haha, bran flakes were called for.

We were hoping to go cycling but it was pretty miserable all day so we didn’t in the end. We checked out the Pavilion which is absolutely beautiful inside. Definitely worth a look and they had a tiny Jane Austen exhibition at the end which was a bonus.

We just had a super cosy slow day while it rained. Bought a rainbow umbrella and popped to different places that took our fancy. By the time we were hungry which took a while! We were gagging for something healthy and we had passed some vegan cafes a couple of times. We chose Larder because they do health bowls called buddha bowls and their food just sounded perfect!

It was absolutely delicious! I’d love to be able to eat that kind of variety every day. I chose the Buddha bowl, mix n match.  So there was two types if hummus, with cous-cous, bulghar wheat with different flavours. and lentil dhal and yoghurt. And mixed with salad leaves. Rosie got the dhal platter which was amazing. The chutney was soo good!

We then tried to get into choccywoccydodah to get a bit of chocolate but their cafe was totally booked. So we went to a couple of chocolate shops nearby haha. Balanced eating and all that 😉

We picked up some chocolate buttons in montezuma’s (a whole shop of their stuff!!) and then jumped the rainy street to ‘Be chocolate’. They sell hot chocolate as well as your normal chocolate truffles and gifts and slabs of chocolate. Loads of free samples!! And so we decided to get a hot chocolate to share, you can choose dark, milk or white chocolate and with cream or just hot water. Obviously we chose milk chocolate with cream.

And oh my god. It was absolutely soul destroying. It was all you could ever want in a hot chocolate. It was literally melted chocolate in a cup. You know the chocolate fountains you get at parties. it was like we were drinking that. Totally totally beautiful and i was giddy for hours! Definitely recommend that to anyone looking for the perfect hot chocolate! And fair play if you can drink a whole one yourself! bloody hell!

We pretty much headed back to our room and chilled with books and snoozed. The rain had got worse and there was little else we could do that wouldn’t involve eating or drinking and we were so full! Safe to say all we did was pop to a shop and buy hummus and bread that evening .. and some Miso soup for starters too. and ate in our room with tv. Crashed!

Thursday!

The weather looked much more positive. So i got a bike out to rent for the day. Brighton Cycle hire we used and it was only £10 for the whole day! Defo recommend the company. Though we saw that Brighton is bringing in the self service bike hire things that London and other cities have.

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Like my bike? Beautiful! 😉

We cycled to Hove and back and then to the Marina and back. We stopped in a coffee shop ‘ Bake out’ in Hove as it started pouring it down while we cycled. Rosie’s pretty drenched in the photo.  Their food looked and smelled great but we managed to not buy anything as we booked ourselves into ’64 degrees’ for lunch.

eeeee, defo the poshest restaurant that either of us has been to.

This was the menu:

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The vague-ness was very vague.. But the smells coming from the place were mouthwatering. We arrived and got a seat directly in front of the chef. This was really cool, we could sit and watch them create these masterpieces and we could see all the dishes we hadn’t chosen and what they actually looked like. We were recommended to get 4-6 dishes between two of us. The idea was that we would share and try everything .. which we do everytime anyway! We chose 4 and that was perfect.

We went for the Plaice, Gorgonzola, duck leg and Grass is greener. We got given extras like the soda bread with really airy marmite butter! Can’t say I’m a massive fan of marmite normally but it worked so well. Got us very excited for the first dish

The Plaice was so fresh and so beautifully cooked! The main flavours were the ones described in the menu. They balanced each other so well.

I didn’t take any photos of the gorgonzola haha! We started it before I had the chance to remember too. It was super interesting. All basis and sensations covered. Hazlenuts, cheeze, spicey kimchi, raw green apple pieces. It was really cool!

The duck leg. Oh my god. haha . the skin was so crispy and the meat so moist and beautiful. The sweetness of the jam and sourness of the fermented cabbage was soooo good. Running out of descriptive words lol. I just loved how it poked all the sensations and it was teasing all corners of the tastebuds.

The grass is greener was just unbelievable. It was ox-tongue and just fell apart in your mouth. So so perfect. The little ravioli on top had gravy inside it which was great fun. And a great delight to me, I love gravy.

So definitely one of the best lunches I have ever eaten and safe to say we were too full for desserts.. which sounded sooo good too! We ended on a passionfruit sorbet which again was incredible. Everything about the restaurant was great, the staff, the food. It wasn’t a cheap lunch but actually not far off worth what we paid! As a treat x)

We cycled around a bit more after this and did a last little bit of shopping. We stopped on the beach one last time while to rain was at bay and it wasn’t too windy.  Was so nice. So snuggly.  ❤

Before waiting for our train home, we grabbed a tea in one of the coffee shops close by. The flower pot bakery. Really nice place. I love copper and we both agreed that we want our kitchen to look something like this… simple done very well. sharp rustic.

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Eee a whistle stop tour of our little adventure around Brighton! Mostly food obviously!

Totally recommend Brighton if you want a city break that isn’t a huge city, has a beach and doesn’t need to involved an airport!

We love Brighton!

We may have window shopped some estate agents …  😉

Rebecca x