For the first time, I can now say "I'll be out of Leicester next month". I've been wanting to say that since December 2006.
This is not to put anyone thinking of doing something similar off. It is do-able and it can be fun, for someone with a different type of personality. With more get-up-and-go.
Now that I can see the end in sight, I realise there was more I could have done to enjoy my time here. I could have done more to make friends and have a social life in Leicester. I could have developed myself somehow - maybe take an evening course in French, baking, sewing... who knows.
For most of my time here, it was Winter - cold, dark and dreary. When I leave work and it's pitch dark, there was no incentive to do anything beyond, get home, have dinner, curl up in bed and wonder what the hell am I doing here.
Also, the job had a factor to play. It was not challenging enough and there was not the scope to do more. Training is hard! And I don't know if it's because I'm lazy or what... but standing for most of the day and talking almost non-stop, is not my idea of fun and the worst part is having to repeat myself over and over again word for word for each subsequent class. Torture! And I'm not a naturally talkative person. I like puzzles, challenges, analysing, problem solving, process design - and there was none of that here.
I've buckled down for the home run - and everyday I pray to God for strength to see it through to the end.
On the plus side, I've started losing weight - 11 pounds so far. If I'm going to be attending interviews in the next couple of months, I have to look at least comparable to the small small boys and girls going for the same job.
After Leicester, I've love to take a month off though... maybe spend it in the States or in Nigeria. Just chilling with my little boy. We've planned a mini-tour of Europe in September, 18 days driving through France, Italy and Spain, staying in holiday camps along the way. I've got that to look forward to.
Last weekend was good! On Saturday I had to go and do Naija food shopping. I went to Cricklewood and bought Pounded Yam, Amala, Yellow garri, White garri, Knorr Cubes and Beans. Tunji was very happy! In the evening, I had a bridal shower to attend for this 'almost 40 year old' friend of mine. Beautiful, educated, great career - but no man. Until now! At the last minute, I decided not to go and stayed home bonding with my baby. Sunday was good. It was thanksgiving service in church. Some young friends of our dedicated their one year old son - a gorgeous little boy. It reminded me of when my 'miracle baby' was dedicated. I am yet to hear the sort of prayers they prayed for Kitan prayed for any other child. That day, the whole church bowed. The visiting pastor must have known that this was a special baby - there is nothing he did not cover - it was amazing!
After church was the birthday party for the little boy then on to another party for a 40 year old friend of mine.
We got home totally shattered but it was fun and we'd got to spend time together as a family and eat free food. Free as in I did not have to buy it or cook it!