At the end of my last blog I mentioned that Ian and I had spent a week apart, he had gone north to Nottingham University for an OU residential school MSXR209 - mathematical modelling. Previous to this there had been an assignment prepared, to be marked by the other students; then long days of work from 9am to 9pm, a group presentation interspersed with not very good meals and then since his return work on the second assignment which was posted today.
Now it is holiday until the beginning of October when a course with the number 365 starts, this time it is for 30 points, not 60 as in previous years, so we may be able to go out and play sometimes. My life is all holiday in some ways, don't have to worry that the man coming to look at the boiler today didn't make it, tomorrow will do, it is so lovely not to stress about using up annual leave for this sort of thing! I know I'm fortunate to have Ian to share household management, his absence made me realise just how much of the day to day burden of living he does. Just going out for the paper each day was a major exercise, locking up the house, setting alarm, remembering the voucher, checking whether I needed food, decisions made without recourse to discussion.
I wasn't lonely, I'm happy with my own company for I lived on my own for a couple of years and house shared with others who were away much of the time. Maybe it was the realization that I''d never been alone for so long in this house where we'd lived for over 15 years, for over the last 5 years we've been home together during the day too and we just missed each other so much. Ian was surrounded by students and tutors; I had invites, afternoon tea in the garden from one friend, morning coffee in the garden from another and a visit to Sunbury walled garden with friend and her grandchild but it all felt strange to be without shared companionship, our habit of us both having the same thoughts or ideas, just a look and we know the other's thoughts. Has made me appreciate even more how fortunate I am, that I must cherish this time we have together, remembering the story of the rich fool, 'This night your soul will be required of you'. We had that scare nearly 19 years ago, Ian had a DVT in his lung, to quote the nurse "We've jump started him" so every moment since then is precious and we don't like being apart for too long.