In the last 48 hours I’ve moved from this:

to this:

We’ve shifted from shiny, Patrick Bateman anonymous grey surfaces, to terracotta rustic and the curious warmth of early 90’s amber hued pine.

It was in that first wee wee kitchen; best designed for people who reheat ready-meals, make toast for tea and slug protein shakes for breakfast that we ate for two great years. It was there that I played fridge tetris, cramming enough ingredients each day into a half size bar fridge to triple test 60 recipes for the book. And it was in that kitchen that we cooked a four kilo turkey for our first north-hemisphere Christmas.

On that shiny bench there were countless Campari and ice’s made as 6.30 pm slipped past and behind it there were plenty of dishes washed by hand, courtesy of a dishwasher that…. didn’t.

And now I have space. Enough to spin with both hands outstretched and not touch a wall. I have the kind of kitchen that makes me want to put on the Big Chill soundtrack and twirl a little while cleaning up.

The Eat, Drink and Be Merry poster is still there (courtesy of this lovely lady). The famed map/project plan is too for pondering while the kettle boils.  They came with us along with a box of stray condiments, a bag of frozen peas, some booze and the Nespresso (careful moving those things, there’s some terrifying dark sludge lurking in the bottom when they get tipped over).

There’s a brand new fuchsia orchard  (courtesy of this lovely visitor).

And did I mention there’s space?

There’s room to put the pans away out of sight (though the big blue dutch oven will always have pride of place on the bench).

There’s sufficient cupboards to consider storing more than eight spices at once. There’s a full size fridge I tell you and a dishwasher that hopefully does.

And more than anything that’s providing fodder for excitement, there’s a gas hob.

I have a window for ventilation, contemplation and to hopefully take some photos next to.

In among the clashing of mottled marble and sandy cupboards, this kitchen has very good bones.

I’ve heard that a  change is as good as a holiday. Consider this a postcard from mine.

Life is good, my friends.