My weekend with Rob Adams, veterinarian specialist and podcaster

The best time to get up on the weekend is it?

I love sleeping in on the weekends, although I often get up so early in the week to cycle before work that it doesn’t take much to feel like I’m lying down.

I work as a specialist veterinary surgeon at Northern Ireland Veterinary Specialists in Hillsborough. We see amazing things but as a result the days can sometimes be very long and unpredictable, leaving me exhausted both physically and emotionally.

Weekends can then be an often necessary time to get back to basics, recover and catch up with the fatigue accumulated during the week.

Breakfast or brunch?

Can I have both? I admit being a bit of a bottomless pit my wife Jules says it’s expensive to run! If the pressure were to overcome, I would sleep in and have a big brunch. In reality though, on the weekends I could treat myself to a cup of tea in bed with a hot baking pastry out of the oven, then a small snack for eleven with coffee, then lunch.

Are you a weekend cleaner?

No, at least not in the house. But if the patio needs to be washed or the grass needs to be cut, then yes I would find myself doing it on weekends. I’m more likely to have a weekend DIY project going and be found doing a mess rather than cleaning up.

What does an ideal Saturday look like?

I love cycling. So after a late start and breakfast in bed with Jules, I would have gone to compete in a Cycling Ireland road race. After that I would come home for lunch and go for a walk with Jules and our grieving dog Alice.

In the evening, I was completely exhausted and ready to collapse on the sofa in front of the TV, in order to order a take out and watch a movie.

Do you prefer to be indoors or outdoors?

Did I mention cycling? Definitely outdoors, whether by bike, walking with Jules and Alice or wild camping.

How have weekends changed as you get older?

At school I would spend the weekends rowing or horseback riding, but when I got to college it mostly turned into breakdancing (or having a bit of a hangover) . Now even though I don’t feel older, I find myself doing more household chores or DIY projects and of course, I have also started riding a bicycle.

If you could eat anywhere in NI tonight, where would you go?

Ox in Belfast – I really enjoy food and fine dining and once a year or so Jules and I will treat each other to a Michelin star experience as a treat.

And you would have?

The tasting menu with food and wine pairing. It’s extravagant, but you get a much better appreciation for wine and food when paired well.

Do you still have time on weekends?

Relax. Being a specialist veterinarian comes with many challenges and expectations. We work at the top of our game, pushing the boundaries of what is possible for our patients.

You have to give of yourself so much that it’s really important to be able to step back and relax on the weekends.

Do you sometimes work on weekends?

Yes, I will always provide a much needed “back-up” for our in-house vets who work in the ER on weekends, especially for the more critical patients I have in the hospital.

On top of that, I recently started recording a pet podcast with Anne-Marie Wallace for BBC Sounds titled “Alright, pet?”. It has been really fun talking to celebrities and their pet owners.

I especially enjoyed speaking with Eamonn Holmes who was such a delight that I felt it was me who was being interviewed rather than the other way around!

If anyone would like to get in touch or attend the show, please feel free to email us with any questions at [email protected]

Who would you most like to go out for a drink with?

Gerard thomas I grew up in South Wales and as an avid cyclist I have been a huge fan of G for many years, even before he won the Tour de France. I think we would have a lot in common and it would be a little craic.

If it’s dinner time and you stay inside what do you order to take away?

Pizza from Pizza Boutique in Hillsborough, or curry from The Gulistan of Bengal in Lisburn. Both are excellent!

You are at home, what movies are you watching?

Probably something in the sci-fi or fantasy genre for the escape if offered. They really help me disconnect. I liked Avatar so much, for example, that I went to the cinema several times this week to see it on repeat.

That said, I really enjoy a whole range of movies, even weird girl movies as guilty pleasure (although I usually have to wait until my wife is out of the house for the latter because she hates them).

What TV programs are on the menu?

We just wrapped up the final season of The Handmaid’s Tale – it’s an amazing story but not always easy to watch.

I also really liked Lupine, Line of Duty and Clarkson’s Farm this year.

What are you reading?

Hail Marie by Andy Weir. I really enjoyed his previous work, The Martian, which was later adapted for cinema. Hail Mary is at least as good if not better. I also recently completed Robert Galbraith’s Cormoran Strike series which I absolutely loved.

Bedtime is …

A glass of whiskey (I’m really known to take this to bed!) And a chapter from a good book.

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