I moved into my quirky little house 19 years ago this month. It was March, just before Easter and I remember it being sunny but that may just have been because I was happy to be there. I had a camp bed, a donated bookcase and a desk a friend had liberated from a pavement somewhere in London.
I camped out in the living room for the first few months with the log burner as my only heating and a makeshift kitchen. I loved it. It was simple, it was my own space and it was full of potential, and I was full of energy and enthusiasm to make it my own.
I remember seeing the daffodils around the cherry tree for the first time, the same ones that I can see right now as I write this, as I sat hand-painting tiles for the kitchen and bathroom and listening to music on my little cassette player.
The house has been through several incarnations since then, as have I, and very little remains of that first wave of domestic creativity, but I do still have one of the kitchen tiles - I saved the one that I had written the date on, it seemed important somehow.
It was a happy time, at least that's how I remember it through my rose-tinted spectacles - happy and free. Simpler, although I don't expect it felt that simple then.
So as I move into the 20th year of living here I'm wondering how to recreate that feeling of fresh aliveness that I felt then in this funny little home of mine. It will be different now because I'm different now, but I need that feeling of life again, that uncluttered, simple, creative existence that feels full of promise and joy. Maybe what I'm asking for really is what all of us want - happiness, peace and vitality. And freedom. Watch this space!
Home. My little octagon. (Figures of Eight!)