Remember that time I went to Cardiff? (No, you probably don’t)
It wouldn’t be Ordinary Decent Gamer without an apology at the outset. I’ve been remiss in my writing duties. It also wouldn’t be the same without an excuse. I moved country!
At the end of July, I bade farewell to my small corner of the world in Magheralin, and set off for the dizzying heights of Cardiff society. As the crow flies, Cardiff is only 243 miles away, but it felt like a much bigger move. I was moving into a new chapter in my career, and my life. Histopathology training in the University Hospital of Wales, at Heath.
The longest I had been away from home prior to this was ten weeks living and travelling in Asia, but this was different again. Don’t worry, I found plenty of Japanese restaurants in Cardiff. But many of my friends and family were back home. And my stuff. I didn’t have decent accommodation planned so there was hardly any space for my abundance of stuff. Not that I needed much starting out – just my wallet, phone, laptop and some clothes.
I was without my workshop. My tools. My piano. My guitars. My cooking equipment. The editing desk. The things that occupied much of my downtime (a concept only restored to me in April after working for the best part of two years in the hospital).
If I had **x** then I could do **y**
A typical thought that would pop into my head.
I needed a place to stay, and establish myself in Cardiff, and the hospital accommodation wasn’t going to cut it. Unless Soviet-era living conditions float your boat. Excellent for a depressing flat film set, but not so great for daily living.
It all sounds very grim but the reality is I love Cardiff and I’m enjoying my new job. Everyone is incredibly welcoming, and exploring a new city is fantastic. Admittedly the accommodation situation is less than ideal, but I’m actively looking for other places to stay, and the hospital digs save me a three hour commute (each way) from Bridgwater, or paying for Airbnb or a bed and breakfast while I hoped something better would come up.
Cooking service has almost returned to normal. I’ve sourced my favourite saute pan, and a sort-of-Japanese-looking knife that does a decent job. And I found a less depressing pillow than the one provided by the hospital. TKMaxx giveth all. Travelling up and down on the train isn’t so bad, either.
Ramen was easy to find, too. About twenty minutes away there is a deluge of Asian restaurants, from the standard Indian and Chinese joints to Japanese, Arabic and more. There’s no lack of choice. Tenkaichi was my first stop, for a bowl of ramen and a bottle of Asahi. To my horror, I discovered Asahi was produced on license in Europe, which explains the reasonable price. It’s normal practice, but I had assumed it was imported from Japan.
My adventure in Cardiff has only just begun, and the normal irregular video service will be restored in time. And who knows, there might even be some games involved.
Since writing this, I’ve escaped the hospital accommodation and I’m staying in a great house in Roath, a student-y part of Cardiff, for a couple of weeks. Then I move into my room on King George V drive in a fantastic house only a minute from the hospital. And I was given a tour of Cardiff Bay by a friend and local, and introduced to the wonder of Welshcakes. And if Welshcakes weren’t exciting enough, I’m getting married in three weeks. Everything is coming up Millhouse!
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