Since the Stuff Needing Done has now reached critical mass, I really should not be wasting time blogging, for this is merely an activity I enjoy, instead of being Useful. I shall salve my conscience by running all the days together. And, onward!
I now have a Definitive Plan for achieving everything I need to get done. Behold! All I need to do is arise at 5.30 sharp every morning, shower and do a weights workout, scarf down breakfast (I have now successfully had a whole week of eating breakfast before work, go me), study for an hour before trudging off to work, and the rest of the day should just magically fall into place!
It is now about 9 weeks since I developed this plan, and I am sure you will be amazed to read that the number of times it has ever been carried out is… zero. Which says much, mostly about my slobbiness.
The Day of Lunar Deities
However, Monday was the dawn of a brand new week, in which everything was going to be Different! And how – the Bossman stayed over on Sunday, and howled in horror at the thought of the alarm going off at half five, but I figured, with a lift to work, it was all still good. And I would have someone to have breakfast with!
But the Bossman is ill and needed a break, so I crept around quietly cleaning the place and ran off to work without studying or eating, yet again, but hey, the dishes were done and the pile of stuff to go to the charity shops was punted back into my bedroom, and a good thing too as I have Mr Serial Killer turning up tonight to (touchwood) be a lovely flatmate who wants to live with me. (Back-up plan in case he doesn’t, and neither does anyone else: Spend Nothing. Ever!)
True to form for a Monday, everything promptly went wrong, but to save the Chronicle of Nonsense being even more rambly, I shall keep examples to those that don’t happen every damn day anyway. For instance, at nine, the door burst open and my Colleague of Cakes came through to announce that her mate’s greenhouse is up for sale and would I like it. Yes I would, because eighty quid wasted today is better than four times that amount wasted when I er, might have more money, right?
At least today, the regularly-scheduled flood from the air conditioning took place further up the corridor and we weren’t interrupted by the workmen.
While reading an 11 a.m. email from the Bossman, sent from my bed and announcing he was thinking about getting up, I swilled down my fifth tepid coffee of the morning and noticed the pleasing way the office lights reflected on the surface, like a large, white reflection of the full moon. Which is odd, because the office lights are square. And behold, there was something floating in my coffee, like a large, white insect nest.
Apparently, all sorts of stuff comes out of the air conditioning and lands on one, even when the workmen aren’t tramping about up there, and everyone else puts coasters over their mugs. Dammit, why did nobody say? I have no idea if I drank any of that whatever it was. I am still trying not to think about it.
Having decided to ditch fightclub as a one-off (again) in the hopes of getting Mr Serial Killer as a lodger, I ran home with a freshly dry-cleaned double duvet in a large and slippery bag under each arm, and ran from room to room making all things pleasant for inspection, at which point I discovered he was working late and couldn’t make it. Le sigh. Will he call to reschedule, or will he never be heard from again?
So, time to study, right? Why no – I had the Bossman’s expenses to take care of!
The Day of Deities of War
Having had enough of Monday, I came out fighting on Tuesday – but only metaphorically, alas. I spent my lunchbreak writing my best middle-classian letters of complaint to the bank, who have now spent an entire year not providing a service they are charging me hundreds of pounds for, then blew it by including an invoice for my time and coming over as a complete yahoo.
Having burned my bridges there, I then wrote far more grovelly letters to the neighbours about this greenhouse, which is now paid for, so please god let it find a home, posted the lot and discovered I was agitated enough to cheerfully walk three miles in the opposite direction to my home, rather than take the train.
For despite the million things I have to do, I had promised to attend Dinner With My Colleagues, where we took turns holding forth on the changes at work. For lo, we have a Meeting on Thursday to discuss the situation (read: sit and hear what our fates are). In an unprecedented move, they are rolling out this meeting across all the hospitals on the same day, whereas often the finger is not pulled out enough for this to happen all in the same calendar month. This suggests that the news is far worse than we could possibly imagine.
Having missed both a convenient train and bus back to mine, I walked it instead, thus saving, erm, half what I spent on sending the bank letters alone. Genius, I tells you. However, it was a pleasant evening, not raining too much, and I felt all the better for it. Well, for the first half of it. Having got my daily mileage up to ten, I got in, attempted to study, remembered I have two family birthdays in the next fortnight, scoured the internet for suitable gifts and collapsed into bed, promising I would get up bright and early on Wednesday.
The Day of Deities of Communication
Wednesday brought news from the Bossman’s best mate that my CV is an unmitigated pile of mince. This is good news, honest – much better than the news that, hey, it’s perfect, nobody knows why I don’t get callbacks. True, the two pages of suggestions for improvement were interspersed with comments like, ‘Jesus H’, and ‘WHAT’ and ‘why is this even here for Christ sake’, but I ignored them manfully and sent them to work. Doesn’t do to get too depressed first thing, right? So I saved it for after I’d worked late – with the Big Meeting being conveniently held at 9 a.m. On Hellday, everything needs to be immaculate ahead of it!
Once again, I ditched fightclub as a ‘one-off’ to put my time in working on the CV… in the pub, for I needed a large glass of red to deal with the fact that the Bossman’s best mate seems to consider me an illiterate idiot. Great, how will I look her in the eye at the spa on Sunday? [Better than looking at her anywhere else, seeing as you’ll both be in bikinis – Ed].
(Yeah, the spa, ooh lala, there was this group deal and she really wanted to go and I thought I’d Show Willing, only god knows what someone like muggins here will do that’s all gauche to wreck the event this time. The last time I went near something like this, for instance, it was a Nudist spa and I got Shunned from the place because I got me kit off, go figure. )
Working on the CV was quite depressing enough, and on arriving home, I discovered one of my neighbours has took against not only the idea of me having a greenhouse (I thought the back garden was plenty big enough, and nobody ever goes out there, but apparently… not) but also against the idea of me fitting draught excluders to the close doors so that we don’t essentially have an outside wall on that wall of the flats too. At my own expense and everything! Oh well.
So, studying time, and time to make all the phonecalls and emails I’ve not got round to, and every duvet cover and towel in the place to tidy up…
The Day of Storm Deities
And so Hellday – With Added Hell! – arrived and there was much gallows humour, and then we all went to the Big Meeting. Where the tension was so high, there were tears in many eyes and my left ear blocked up and became painful and then the pain went into my wisdom teeth. (Oh, not now.)
But, which could have been worse. Unless they were lying. ‘No Compulsory Redundancies,’ they said, which I have heard before, oh yes; but then followed it up with, ‘And by that, we don’t mean, we transfer you to the arse-end of the Vale of Leven and you have to take it or get out’. Ooh, that was nice. So, what IS going to happen? Well, every consultant will from now on have 0.5 of a secretary each, to do all ‘high’ level admin and the dreaded ops waiting list, which a quick calculation shows will let 10.6 of us jockey for 4 jobs. And the rest of us…?
Typing pool, apparently. At two bands below what we’re on now. (Very fly, that – typing pool used to be only one band down). But our pay will be protected. Hmm. What? So… we’ll be doing Hufflepuff labour yet getting a Gryffindor wage? Well, until such time as they find us a Proper job and stick us in it (‘not moving us over an hour’s extra commute each way’). Hmm.
‘Well, that sounds not bad,’ we said to each other cautiously. Certainly, we’re still employed for a bit. And imagine getting paid the same rate for everything to be Someone Else’s Problem! (When I first heard about the rumoured pay drop, I found myself eyeing the big black dude who brings the files round on a trolley with something approaching jealousy, for he is paid at that band and seems to have quite a carefree job. ‘Forget it’, said my Colleague of Skull Scarves, ‘he’s a different department, you won’t get it’. ‘A girl can dream, can’t she?’ I said in mock-huffiness. True, I never though this is what I’d dream of, but still…)
In conclusion: the wolf may have been sighted in the distance, but his intentions are still unclear and he is not at the door Right Now.Still, everyone was unmotivated to work for the rest of the day – except me! For I have taken my last annual leave day for tomorrow, Dr Hurricane also being away, and don’t want to be Behind next Monday! (When It Will Be A Brand New Week And All Be Different, Honest).
Well, I was motivated up until the bank called. Not the local bank, of course, who have dingied all my letters, but my home branch, who I copied everything to in the hopes that, being set in a very small rural village, they would have more time to help me. And did they ever! A lassie called and was very helpful. True, she also told me she Knows Exactly Where I Live, but it turns out she used to live right near there, having left for my home village the year before I was born, and thus we shared a small community for 18 years and I have not a clue who she is. Awww. Or something.
Being approximately ten hours behind in the schedule for studying this week, (again), I ran home via the charity shops, shedding possessions left and right and straight into Homebase, where I picked up a bunch of paint. I have been having a hankering to repaint the spare room all week now – is it not MY spare room? And is nobody interested in it (Mr Serial Killer still has not returned my text re rescheduling. My batting average is now 2 folks through the door out of… ten. Bah). So why should I not paint it in pleasing lilacs and then, if nobody really wants it, move my studio in there instead? And then I shall sit down and study!
Alas, the painting took longer than I thought, but I now have everything undercoated except for one corner. So, no studying again then. However, I had high hopes for Friday, as I went to bed early with a head swimming from two small glasses of the veritable dynamite that is the potato wine (it is sweet, like a dessert wine, kicks like a mule and while it is not a Vintage, you would never guess what it is made of). And the having only eaten a pot noodle all day.
The Day of Annual Leave
I spent the night lying awake in great pain from my wisdom tooth. How come this always happens when I have time off to Get Stuff Done?
So six a.m. found me moving the last wardrobe to finish the undercoating, and lo, behind it I found a large, black pyramidal mark on the wall. The hell? Clearly it is damp and mould, like that which the Tweedles complained about on their way out, but I had moved all the furniture myself and bicarb’d it to death only a month ago, muttering all the while that they weren’t content with just drowning my bathroom, oh no – and now it is back. Crap. Maybe it wasn’t them after all!
Still feeling this was in some way their fault (i.e. I would have taken it more seriously if I hadn’t had to repaint the bathroom twice, once with anti-damp paint, and replace the toilet seat four times during their eleven-month tenure because the wife would, god love her, carefully bleach the metal hinges every day until they corroded through), I peeled back the wallpaper with my fingers. Which was my next indication that something was far wrong. Ah yes. The side of the flat that gets no sun ever is also in need of a strip right back to the bare wall and some anti-damp paint!
Well, I thought, at least I have discovered this at a time when nobody is IN the room, so things could be worse. Admittedly, I really thought I had just finished the renovations and was looking forward to spending the time at fightclub and drawing instead, but never mind. Right, game on!
Seven a.m. found me comparison shopping for wallpaper steamers, eight a.m. found me scrubbing the kitchen, nine a.m. found me painting the bed-side wall of the spare room, and eleven a.m. found me down the Mall for a steamer unit. (Half the price of the one in the shop next door, and so well worth the four-mile walk to get it!) Two p.m. found me remembering how rubbish I am at steaming wallpaper. Four p.m. found me giving up and getting ready to go out to a mate’s birthday in Edinburgh, for I owe this whole weekend to doing stuff for other people, which is important.
In conclusion, after working like a dog all week, my CV is still a dog’s breakfast, the flat looks worse than it did at the start of the week, I’m even stonier broke and I have a face like a chipmunk saving up for winter. GAHHHH!