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It's Sunday evening, and I'm writing this at my new house sit in Woolwich in the Greater London area. Tomorrow morning I'll return to the increasingly familiar routine of job hunting. Tonight I can afford a couple of hours to review photos and write.

On Friday afternoon I took what could well be my last opportunity to walk from Chelmsford to the village of Writtle in Essex. Chelmsford is the county town of Essex, and Writtle, while only a mile or two from it, is a completely separate village, with its own separate history.

Writtle
Cottages in Writtle

My walk took me along the banks of the River Can and through the rose gold barley fields of the agricultural college. Soon I was amongst ancient cottages and walking up the main street, past the village green (complete with duck pond) to the pub. Food had finished by the time I arrived, so I had a snack at the village tea room instead.

All delightful, then a shorter walk back along the main road to Chelmsford, and once again I was in a twenty first century city. ...continue reading "Grieving for the “Good Old Days”"

On Saturday the weather was beautiful - mid twenties and a gentle breeze - so I packed the camera and caught a coach to the coast. Having been born on an island, if I don't see the sea for a while, I miss it.

Beach at Southend
Beaches are the same everywhere - families and ice creams - but the striped deck chairs made this one seem particularly English. The pier is in the distance.

The nearest open water to Chelmsford is Southend-on-Sea. I'd been warned I might find it tacky, but I was up for something new, a contrast perhaps to the wild Irish coastline. ...continue reading "Beside the Seaside"

I've long believed in the words of The Desiderata:

...whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

St Paul's
The dome of St Paul's from the courtyard where we met. Tony and I co-ordinated via mobile phone. We'd started out at diametrically opposite corners of St Paul's. What would we have done without modern technology?

It's my birthday next week, and often around this time of the year I have a period of introspection and review. Have I achieved anything? Is my life progressing in the way I want it too?

What a difference a year makes!

This time last year I was living in Perth, Western Australia. Diseased thyroid glands were making eating and sleeping difficult. Surgery at the end of July corrected the problem permanently - a problem I'd had for at least twenty years, if not a lot longer. ...continue reading "Free Hugs & New Friends"

I was in Borris yesterday, buying a few essentials. I have job interviews next week, and I've been backpacking for almost six months. No makeup, very little jewellery, and my watch had stopped.

Borris on a busy Friday afternoon in summer.
Borris on a busy Friday afternoon in summer. It was a beautiful day, I didn't need my cardigan!

And I'm going to have to get used to wearing tights again, which will be a bit of a shock to the system, but can't be helped. A sacrifice one has to make to earn a living again.

The total came to 28.49 euros.

"Do you take credit card?" I asked. ...continue reading "Doing Business in Borris"

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Since last I wrote I've been scouring the internet for work and house sits in London. I plan to settle there for a while - six months or longer - and thoroughly explore one of the oldest and most interesting cities in the world. Stay tuned!

A Georgian terrace in Cork
A Georgian terrace in Cork

(If you know of either a house sit or a job in London, feel free to contact me on jennie@jenniereid.com.au.)

My time in Ireland has been fascinating. I've explored much of the south eastern corner of the country and seen some of the rest of it. I've also spent a great deal of time in contemplation. In many ways, these ten weeks have been my equivalent of a retreat. Although I would not describe myself as a conventionally religious person, I feel closer to the spiritual aspects of the universe than I did when I arrived in April, exhausted and emotional after the combined effects of the Dorset Disaster and missing my plane. I'm stronger now, and excited about the adventures that lie ahead. ...continue reading "Last Week in Ireland…"