Forgive me if I am beginning to sound like a stuck record, but my life just seems to get busier and busier. I don’t say this in a vain attempt to sound popular and successful – it’s just a statement of fact. One of the knock-on effects of our stormy financial climate, which my politicians tell me is a temporary problem (cough cough) is that people who run their own businesses have to work even longer shifts to keep the company afloat. Now as far as multi-million conglomerates go the good ship Whisk might be more of a dinghy than a galleon, but that doesn’t detract from the fact that if it sinks I will be a very unhappy captain. I’ve poured far too much energy, time and dough (in both senses of the word) into my business to let it go under. And if that means forgoing everyday things like eating and sleeping, well… that’s the way the cookie crumbles.
I know, I’m shameless, but you have to make a crust.
But back to the ranting. I can’t remember when I last had a good night’s sleep. In fact, I can’t remember when I last had a bad night’s sleep. Even while at university, where my flatmates had a unique body clock that was governed by nachos and Nintendo, I slept approximately sixty percent more than I do now. On the odd occasion that I do get to close my eyes, it’s dozing on a train orkeeling over in a queue at the supermarket.
I also seem to be in a perpetual state of motion. I’m constantly reminded of the Rufus Wainwright lyric “Why am I always on a plane / or a fast train?”. I barely have time to get my feet wet in London as I’m there for approximately five minutes before I have to jet off again.
My nights are spent in Travel lodges and Holiday Inns in strange cities. Despite what anybody says, there is nothing exciting about this kind of lifestyle. The view out the window might change, but the rooms stay the same. The same bed, which is comfy but not my own, the same pictures on the walls, the same suspect stain just about hidden by the trouser press.
My state of mind during this round the country jaunts should be indicated by the glee with which I greeted the slightly rude name of a dessert listed in my menu whilst I dined alone on evening. I’ll elaborate on this in a later post, but I was tragic enough to phone a friend of mine in Northern Ireland and tell him about it. There I sat, one person at a table for dinner, laughing to myself at an innuendo which a toddler would probably have described as immature.
Yes indeed, what a heady life I lead.
The reason that I find myself in such depressing situations is that this is the time of year when, as the food industry gears up for Christmas, I am contracted to travel around the UK doing demonstrations for Aga. Therefore, at the moment most of my days are spent in the company of turkeys and housewives – I wouldn’t be so bold as to make a link between the two, so you can insert your own punchline there. On several occasions I have had to travel with a slowly defrosting turkey perched on the seat beside me on the train to Birmingham. It’s okay though – he gets on for half-price.
I know it must be a crushing blow to learn that home economics isn’t all glitz and glamour. The worst part of it is by the time I actually reach Christmas I can’t see a turkey far enough. After spending so much time instructing people how to cook turkeys come Christmas Eve I am ready to tell said bird to get stuffed.
But hey, that’s life. I’m not going to complain about it (well, not too much) because even though I’m writing this in yet another empty hotel room, even though I’m about to head downstairs for yet another meal where I’m flying solo, even though I’ll be spending the evening on a lopsided bed watching the repeat of Harry Hill on the telly, I chose this path. I chose this job. And when I stop to think about it (when I get the time, that is), I doubt that I would want to do anything else.