I am being honest with you when I say that I dislike this question...intensely. It started with our first move overseas. I have a love hate relationship with travelling. Love the travel, hate the paperwork associated with it. When the little box comes up on the custom forms, asking me to fill in my Occupation, I hesitate, the pen wavers, and then I go on to fill in what I have been filling in for the past 25 years... 'HOMEMAKER'.
Why this term? It was given to me, on my first trip into Sydney in 1986. I had left that box blank. At that point I was newly married, moving to Australia, having left my career behind in the USA. What was I? I had no idea. The customs officer said I needed an answer, he could see I was confused...I was realising at that moment that I could no longer define myself...in a single word. He found the answer for me and wrote it down, HOMEMAKER. I have filled in HOMEMAKER begrudgingly ever since....that is until now.
I explained my situation to our guide ( because I have a habit of doing things like that) and he replied..."Mrs. H, in our country we have a much better expression, it is one we hold great respect for, we refer to our wives and mothers as a HOME MINISTER". I did not hesitate for a second... Prime minister, Finance minister, Foreign minister, Health minister, Culture minister, Information Minister....surely there was room for a Home minister. I often live in my own world....blogging being a perfect example of that, why couldn't I be a HOME MINISTER?
Our guide went on to say that is a 'most revered position' and is shown great respect within his culture. I declared my love for India at that point and started to wonder if I could throw 'Esq' onto the end of my title. In Britain it is 'a title of respect for a member of the English gentry ranking just below a knight: placed after the name'. In my world, delusions of grandeur were running rampant....Jeanne H. Home Minister Esq. Move over guys, I am coming in. That might not look half bad on a calling card. :)
...and guess what?....when we left India and it came time to fill in the entry cards into the UK....I wrote HOME MINISTER (Esq. might have been pushing it)...and have been declaring my new found title within our family ever since. Any guesses on how many ways they will use this term in the form of Christmas gifts this year??
For those of you are relating to this post, I leave you with one I wrote nearly two years ago to the day.
How ironic is that? At this point in time, I had been a blogger for all of two weeks. I wanted to start a Dear B ( blogger) series...relating to aspects of life. I wrote two posts, the one below and another entitled Packing 101. I did not think there would be much interest so I stopped writing them.
Interestingly as well, I was preparing for the move from New Zealand to England at that time...not unlike where I am now, preparing for a move from England to Vietnam.
A post written two years ago....from a two week old blogger..
Dear B....Happy Homemaker
November 3, 2009
Every once in a while my mind goes into overdrive and I find the only way to 'get it out' is to write. I wasn't quite sure how to transfer this energy into my blog but I had a thought. One of my pet peeves in life is the Passenger Information Card I have to fill out when I travel. When I married 23 years ago, I was a happy career woman who left it all to follow her husband on an expat adventure. On our first trip to Australia, I had to fill out the PIC and left the section for 'Occupation' blank because I didn't know what to fill in. I had just married, I was moving to a new country and had no idea what I would do when we got to Australia. The Immigration Officer was not happy and asked me to fill in the card. I looked at him blankly; he looked at me quizzically and he wrote in HOMEMAKER. I was flabbergasted...I wasn't ready...
All these years later and the label has stuck. I filled in the card last week and will do it again this week. Here is my Happy Homemaker (above). I guess this is me, for now. Somehow I can relate. What follows is a letter to B... to express my anxiety and frustrations of the day. The good news is I always feel better when I do this...helps to clear the mind.
Help! I am using this blog to help 'shape the thoughts that stir within' and the thoughts do 'runneth' over.
I started this Blog two weeks ago and I think about writing day and night. I have so many writing pads around me that I don't know which one is for which. Is the pink journal for last week's thoughts or this week or is it the blue one? When I take my daily walks I look like a tech psychopath. Camera in one hand to take photos for blog, voice recorder in other to make instant note of thoughts in my head and a mobile phone..well, just because. Juggling all three with a bottle of water and a dog on a lead is not an easy task!
I have changed the photo on my blog and am in despair. I had my favourite pink flower photo...but I love my photo from Papua New Guinea. Am I a pink girl or is my true colour orange??? I love interior design, but I love photography too and then there is travel and all those beautiful blogs to look at. What about books and reading and all the wonderful blogs for that and then there are recipes and more blogs for that and I am now at the point where I am afraid to look at anyone's blog for fear of finding another to add to my list. To follow or to add to blog list, that is the question!
I have mountains of paperwork, I leave on a trip overseas the day after tomorrow, I haven't unpacked from last weeks trip and I am still contemplating how I am going to fit a King size possum blanket in one of my suitcases. That's another story but I wont' go there now.
My friends and family are worried, I fear an intervention may be in the works and here I sit.... hysterical yet happy as a clam...I'm writing:)
Harried but Happy Homemaker
Best wishes for a fabulous day from
Jeanne H...Home Minister Esq. :)
PS..Sorry for the length of todays post..
there are days when you just have to get it out...don't you think?