Disclaimer: the following list is in alphabetical order. No preference to persons listed should be implied based upon their position within this list:
I share my life with the following very important people. There are, of course, other important people in my life, but these are the very important people:
- Baby Bro – Younger brother, the epitome of suave. Handsome chap; slick dresser. He’s the guy who actually knows what he’s doing when he swirls the wine and sniffs it, as the waiter hovers nearby awaiting the verdict. At the risk of making him sound like a lush, he knows about good wines, beers, and spirits of all kinds. Lives in New Zealand with his lovely wife, Lady S and their son, Little M. Has told me repeatedly what his job is but I still don’t know what he does. Whatever it is, it seems to be a pretty important thing! Became culinarily inspired as a child by a rather ancient tome of a cookbook written by Robert Carrier. Has now embraced BBQs and smokers but enjoys both preparation and consumption of fine dining dishes.
- Barn – Husband, rock. Extremely tolerant of my fads and fancies, very supportive of my dreams and ambitions. Frustratingly incapable of retaining information passed on during conversation. Has the quirky ability to make me love him passionately and yet still, some days, make me want to beat his face in with a tin of peas. Have so far resisted urge.
- Big Bro – Older brother, salt of the earth. Childhood tormentor, adult champion. Protective, solid, predictable, always there for family and loved ones, laments the fact that we’re so geographically far flung from each other. Knows a thing or two about computers. True believer in me. Giver of awesome hugs. Teller of terrible jokes. Lives in Scotland with his lovely wife, Lady J, with their grown up children living nearby.
- Big Sis – Big Sister, inspiration. Losing her sight due to an untreatable genetic condition, facing it with astounding stoicism; working to make something positive…learning, teaching, campaigning…stepping into a whole new world of politics to assist others with sight loss. Brave and gentle. Always ready with kind words and comfort. Believes I can do absolutely anything I want to and cannot comprehend me ever having a doubt about myself enter my head. Chief cake taste tester. My ‘go to gal’ for tear mopping and make-up advice – as a child and still as an adult. Asperger. Has two grown up sons who are:
- The Artist – Nephew, the older of the two. Asperger. First class honours graduate. Maths geek extraordinaire. Funny as hell, sometimes unintentionally. Often struggles with overwhelm when the larger family get together, but can be spectacularly entertaining and interesting company. Very talented artist. Brilliant teacher of statistics, even with someone as freaked out by figures as me. Appreciator of my cooking and baking.
- Medieval – Nephew, younger of my sister’s two. Lives with his fiancée, Mme. H. Quirky, sharp witted, fun. Has great interest in things like brewing mead and port, making musical instruments, whittling wood and playing obscure Russian musical instruments well enough to have been invited there to play. Works with technology. Loves meat. And chillies. Enjoys adventurous cooking. Extremely helpful with events with regards to transport and organisational needs.
- Chef J – Best friend, confidante. Giver of great perspective and sound advice. A bone fide chef. Champion of me and all I do. Knows how to coax me through the bad times and is first on his feet to cheer the successes. Striver, achiever. Lives in the USA with his beautiful wife, Lady Sy and their adorable daughter Little Z.
- Mum – Mother, touchstone for my life. Has shown me the true meaning of words like tenacity, bravery, compassion, staunch, daring, independence and beauty. We haven’t always exactly seen eye-to-eye (she would laugh at the level of understatement) but we survived my teen and young adult years, coming out stronger and together. She’s my ally and my counsellor, and she can still rein me in with a sharp look.
- Petit Man – Son, dude. Has survived 24 years of my parenting. Has become a pretty darned fine human. Occasionally reverts to teen-like behaviour and has the ability to fill the whole house with a bad mood cloud whilst locked away in his bedroom. Shares my enjoyment of food, both cooking and eating. Possesses a wicked sense of humour and can pull me out of the most terrible bad moods. Also extremely tolerant of my fads and fancies, and very supportive of my dreams and ambitions.
The very important pets in my life are currently:
- Crazy Empress – Cat with identity issues. Rescued from a cat’s home – abandoned very young and very pregnant. Does not seem to have quite grasped what it means to be a cat. Has rubbish balancing skills, is very heavy footed, falls asleep in the middle of floors, likes to drink from the toilet bowl, chills out in the (empty) bath. Rules the house with a rod of iron.
- Mooch – Dog, professional whinger. Rescued from a dog’s home. Large, unwieldy, loving, dumb but sly. Dominated by the Crazy Empress. Prefers Barn and Petit Man to me, but knows she has a better chance of getting what she wants if she sucks up to me. Produces vast quantities of hair and spends her days scattering it onto clothing and furniture.