Chicago

Home away from home away from home

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I’m back from vacation (or holiday as I call it). There are some photos to look at at the end of this post, you’re welcome.

I’m actually still in an Uber on the way back from the airport. Normally we get the Blueline into Chicago but we have been travelling for 13 hours and I needed a break from people. Talk about life of a Prince!

I missed Chicago, I also missed Scotland, and Manchester, but mostly the people in all 3 places. We got to see my (mums side of the) family, my husbands family, our friends, and one show in the Edinburgh Fringe. All in 6 days. I’m shattered.

I wore my kilt- which finally fits again after a humiliating wedding where the wrap-around traditional wear didn’t quite wrap around due to my increased waist.

I’ve struggled with my weight over the course of 15 years- which I think I touched upon when talking about marathon training. If anyone wants to discuss my eating disorder/weight gain & loss mentality, message me on Instagram and we can have a chat. I’m totally open.

back to holiday (vacation).

i loved seeing Scotland again. I forgot how much green there was.

I also feel that living in America put me in a bubble as to what’s going on at home- and I really must challenge myself to read more, rather than follow along with tweets.

My family were happy to discuss the current political climate, with one talking about their travel plans for work meaning they arrive in mainland Europe on October 31st, the day the UK is meant to leave the EU. If Boris has anything to do with it, with no deal and a whole load of problems from that.

Ill be talking more about Brexit and my understanding of it again I am sure. Please be aware that I am not an “expert” on it, or politics, but I do live in this world, so my experiences are still valid. Even if they are naive.

America has opened my eyes to the obvious racism that exists in the world. My whiteness has shielded me from this for years (Privilege) so I didn’t get that the colour of your skin creates so many barriers. The closest I can get to understanding it on a personal level is because I’m gay and effeminate. Though the latter can be “acted out” if the scenario needs.

I actually found Manchester to be a very diverse place to walk around in, even in comparison to Chicago. Every race, colour, class, lifestyle can be found in and around Picadilly Gardens. Going to work, shopping, eating, travelling, hanging out with friends, family. I was happy to see everyone going on about their day. But that’s Manchester people, always busy like bees.

Recommended reading for this blog post:

Why I am No Longer Talking to white people about Race by Reni Eddo- Lodge.

Recommended podcasts:

The Friend Zone

The Read

The Stoop

I don’t want to speak for black lives, and want you to hear them directly.

Colin x

Time to move

Around 3 months ago, I went with my husband on a new adventure. He was starting a new job in Chicago and I was going to come with him! Very exciting, I know. I left my job, stopped baking for a while, packed up my kitchen and headed on a plane across the world.

I didn’t really know what to expect, but I was ready for a new adventure. I was ready to move on from my job role that I had, I was ready to start thinking about whether cakes were my direction in life, I also was ready to wait 3-5 months for a work visa which would mean I had the time to think it all through. Think of it like a semi retirement for someone who has worked since he was old enough to, but probably wont retire with a government pension when the time comes. (Classic millennial issue).

We arrived, met some wonderful new people, and he started work. I was left to fend for myself, so I went on walks around my new home. Lots of walks. I have walked up and down the lake side so many times, and been to the zoo (because it’s free) more times than I have ever been to a zoo before. I was worried about the zoo, as I am with most animals in captivity. On one of my (many) visits, I discovered that they actually do a lot for the city. They do research into the wildlife that live in the city, and how that impacts both city dwelling and the animals themselves. Who would have thought that in Chicago there were more than just the usual city mice and foxes. Coyotes, deer and DUCKS (bloody love ducks) are among the usual crowd living with us. I for one, find that exciting.


In my first few months, aside from walking around, I have eaten in lots of little cafes (shout out to Little Goat in Fulton Market area) and been baking up a storm in my new kitchen. If you follow my videos and have seen me baking along with the Bake Off this year, or follow my instagram or Tik Tok and seen my in between bakes- Thank you. My plan while I am here is to gain enough baking knowledge and have recipes to hand so when my Visa kicks in, I can potentially start to sell said baked goods. The “how to become self employed, start a business and take over the world” is much more complicated in the USA than in the UK- the Homemade Cottage food laws in Illinois are a minefield. It looks like I may have to hire out a shared kitchen space somewhere, I shall keep you posted on this.

We have also had visitors, my cousin and his wife came along, my dad has been to visit, and husbands parents have also come to say hello. Its been a busy few months. I went to visit my dads friends (with him) in Detroit, where their hospitality was beyond kindness. My hope is to share all my videos and pictures that I have been taking along the way- so you can see what I have been doing. Stay tuned for more.

See you soon

Colin

x


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