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The domestic: Sophie White wonders if committing to one person - and all their stuff - is truly worth it

Is committing to one person for the rest of your life an unreasonable ask, wonders Sophie White, especially when they have so much stuff?


Sweet potato & chickpea curry

Sweet potato & chickpea curry

Sweet potato & chickpea curry

Committing to being in the presence of another person for the rest of your life is a pretty big thing and, as the vows state, not to be undertaken lightly.

Many would say it is a completely unreasonable ask, and that the entire concept of marriage is inherently flawed. As a married person, I find myself agreeing with this several times a week.

Beyond the impossibility of spending so much time - indeed all the time you basically have left, death do us part and all that - with the other person, more focus should be given over to wondering if you can tolerate spending your life with their stuff.

As I amble about the house, regularly attacked by my husband's various accoutrements, I can rapidly become apoplectic with rage. Why are his shoes practically 9ft long? Why are they stored seemingly everywhere? Why all the golf tees? Our home is practically carpeted with golf tees. They say: 'hate the sin not the sinner', which I've amended to 'hate the stuff not the stuff-owner' but really the two are quite entwined.

Golf is Himself's life force. Unlike many golf wives, I had the advantage of entering into this situation with my eyes fully open. Lots of men only turn to golf later in life, but Himself was an anomalous teenage lover of golf, so I knew what I was signing up for. When I met him in his early 20s, he was also in a band, which I think the 20-year-old me saw as somewhat 'cancelling out' the golf. Sadly it is the golf clubs and not the drum kit that falls on me any time I open the under-stairs cupboard. I genuinely wish it were the other way round.

Of course, while Himself knew that along with me as his lawful wife came a vast collection of shoes and a lifetime supply of abandoned apple cores, when he married me I was not yet the accomplished knitter I am today. He claims to have been enduring a plague of fluff for the last couple of years, ever since I took up the needles.

The huge blanket I knitted for the couch is apparently a particularly bad fluff offender. "It's the fluff-pocolypse in here," he raged recently. I struggled not to laugh. He did, in that very moment, have unnoticed fluff stuck to his face. His beard, I realise, acts like Velcro to the fluff. Unfortunate for him, but amusing for me.

While clearly hobbies can't always align, it definitely helps if you share similar taste in food and in this, thankfully Himself and I have always agreed. This quick veggie curry is no faff and no fluff, I mean, fuss.

Sweet potato & chickpea curry

Serves 4

You will need:

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 onions, diced

4 cloves garlic

2 inches fresh ginger

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 teaspoon of coriander

1 teaspoon of turmeric

Ā½ teaspoon of chilli powder

4 sweet potatoes, washedand diced small

1 t in of tomatoes

1 can coconut milk

200ml stock

1 tin chickpeas

80g frozen peas

Salt to taste

Rice and fresh coriander, to serve

1 Heat the oil in a large pot. Add the onions, garlic, ginger and the spices and cook for a few minutes over a medium heat. Add the sweet potatoes, then stir in the tomatoes, coconut milk and stock.

2 Simmer for about 20-30 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are tender and the sauce has thickened. Drain the chickpeas and add to the pot along with the peas. Salt to taste and serve with rice and fresh coriander.

Sunday Indo Life Magazine

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