Alcohol consumption: still exists but the beer is considerably lower in alcohol than the stuff back home: bitter runs 4.2-4.6% vs. the 5.6% Weißbier I normally drink. I'm also drinking a lot less vodka and whisky. I haven't managed two bottles of vodka in over a week and to fight some extreme insomnia demolished the majority of one of those in a single evening, waking up some four hours later.
Not. Champix: working. The cravings, such as they are, are mild and purely psychological. Because of the visa delay and time of delivery I didn't have time to get a refill for today through the next 14 days before leaving Chermany. I had to go to a GP here in Liverpool and, along with showing my passport and leaving the rest of my Champix supply with them, was told that if the doc agreed I could pick up a prescription at 5:30.
The shit ain't cheap. Fast-tracked through approval in many countries due to very clearly demonstrable efficacy, this stuff is making Pfizer a fortune. Back home a 2-week supply costs almost €60. I figured it would cost at least that here. The doc did indeed issue a 'scrip and off I went with FFiL (future FiL) to the chemist (pharmacy) to get it filled.
I almost shit myself when they told me what it would cost: £7.10. Thank you, NHS! I'm going to see if I can't get weeks 5-8 on another 'scrip before I leave Tuesday. They also have ACC (acetaminophen 500mg/caffeine 30mg/codeine 12.5mg) available without a 'scrip for around a fiver. Additional score!
Tuesday we finally file for the marriage license. RIG will be back from Ireland after having abandoned me for three days to hand in her final thesis and visit friends. We fill in forms, pay £60 and a couple hours later I'll be on a flight home as she boards a train for London; her conference begins Wednesday and she won't be back before Sunday.
While the long-term results of all the stores closing (Woolworth's et al.) bode poor, we've benefited greatly from the 70% off sales and have quite a collection of baby supplies. Too bad I didn't knock her up a few weeks earlier; if we knew Belly-Frog's sex we could buy almost everything we need for the first two years. Shoes and a few other supplies are out since we have no clue how much Belly-Fog might weigh upon arrival.
Since the success of xmas dinner both the FFiL and FMiL have been hounding me about cooking. They both constantly ask questions about everything imaginable and I've had to repeatedly explain that cooking for home is not the same as cooking for customers although there is some cross-over in techniques and methods.
FMiL is now not only actually listening to my explanations of how to cook something she wants to do (French Onion soup yesterday), she's actually being a bit less timid and meek herself, trying out the idea of adding herbs and spices and -- gasp -- salt to food as she's preparing it. Her "chili con carne", however... no. Luckily I had Chinese last night (North Garden Restaurant, 30 Nelson Street, Liverpool -- piles of excellent food at good prices) but she insisted I take a couple tastes as I held back my gasps of horror each time I saw what was next going into the pot. But she's trying. And listening, something she wasn't doing at the start of this visit.
I can't complain about the future in-laws. They seem to have accepted me and show what appears to be a approval. FMiL wants me in the kitchen and fixed two borken bits on my hand-woven Icelandic sweater (jumper). FFiL takes me on Monday nights to his local to play darts with his mates. We chat, banter, and they're quite warm and friendly. I don't think this is simply the result of their acceptance of Favourite Uncle's opinion.
It turns out I was being tested or reviewed as Favourite Uncle picked me up and drove me from Stansted up northwest for hours via Leicester. RIG let slip that he later rang his sister and told her I was OK and that like me or not, RIG had chosen me, I wasn't a serial killer, and that they'd better deal with it.
In short: other than RIG's pains and nausea and so on, shit is cool. Real cool.
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