When the going gets tough, I want an apron

No seriously. If I had a bad day at work, I fantasize about baking. About lovingly folding shirts. Selecting ties. A tough week makes me think in detail about weeks’ worth of carefully laid out bento boxes my Beloved can bring to the office/ university library/ wherever he goes to bring home the Tofurkey.

It’s a form of escapism that is both hilarious (to me) and surreal (also: to me). I’m not sure if I also should call these escapist fantasies enlightening. They may be, but I don’t know what the message is. Because I’m pretty sure I’d get a serious case of cabin fever if I were to be a stay-at-home-wife. Or even a part-time-jobby-job-volunteer-75%-housework-wife. I have never been happier than now, in a set-up where I work a full-time-equivalent job which allows me to be financially independent and have a career, where Beloved has one too (but with different hours) and whatever is not done by our cleaning lady (she rocks!) we divide up by level of anal-retentiveness.

So, why the fantasies? I don’t much like housekeeping (although cooking, baking and laundry folding are by far my favourite endeavours in that arena), but I think it provides me with a sense of security. Something that says “Well, at least you can do that” when I’m am staring down the three most probably US-move-locations (one on the west coast, one on the east coast and one pretty much in the middle) and I do not see a strategy to start planning for what happens when I get there.

Really, it’s the thing that most exhilarates and terrifies me about this whole move to another continent: What Will I Do When I Am There? I’ve managed to conjure up scenarios from part-time remote employment at my current employer with freelancing and volunteering (at a pet shelter with cool dogs) on the side to complete SAHW scenarios to high pressure careers in demanding industries in which maybe Beloved gets to follow me around instead of the opposite.

The scenario I like best is that of the unattached-freelancers-with-nomadic-lifestyle. I keep translating, writing and editing, and Beloved goes from conference to panel to think tank and me, I come with, doing my work wherever and meeting everyone and seeing everything. Due to it’s absolute unplannability, though, it’s not a good fantasy scenario if the inner list maker decides something needs to be planned and scheduled and listed and flowcharted.

Hence my desire for neatly boxed up lentil stew with flowers made of naan-bread, hummus with a sun made out of slices of red and yellow pepper and whole-wheat pasta covered with stars of fresh tomatoes, and mozzarella and a basilicum moon.


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