So you’ve worked out what you want to do next in life..how do you find the right person to work with? Helen reflects on doing what she loves and finding a partner amongst the piles of books!
It is has been said “if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life.” After I took early retirement from the NHS, I knew wanted to do something I loved, and the loves of my life (apart from my family) have been books and food.
These two loves came together in an unexpected way. I am a member of a bookclub with like-minded women who all live in and around the neighbourhood. It was at the bookclub that I met Carla and spotted her amazing baking ability. Her various cakes, including a friend’s wedding cake, were sampled by our very appreciative bookclub. I also spotted Carla’s business acumen.
We found we had many similarities. We are both immigrants – Carla from Canada, me from Cyprus – but had both lived in our area of Bristol for many years. We are both very organised and shared a love of books and food.
We discovered differences too of course: she loves the cold, I love the heat; she is a morning person, I am most definitely not. Fortunately we can both laugh at ourselves.
While getting to know each other, I went off to the School of Artisan Food to gain a Diploma in Baking. Carla took a particular interest in my course and as I was coming to the end she asked “what next?” I sent her an email, jokingly saying I was thinking of setting up my own microbakery: “Interested?” She replied “might be.”
And so began regular meetings in various bakeries and cafes around Bristol (just for research purposes of course): talking products, our vision for the bakery, writing lists, making plans and, eventually, choosing a name. I suggested Bakery108 (108 being our combined ages this year). We both laughed, said we liked it, and Bakery108 was born.
We’re still getting to know each other as we prepare to launch Bakery108 in the coming weeks. But for now, I’m happy to have found such a compatible partner for this exciting new chapter of my life in a most unexpected place.