Woo, four-day working week! Wah, five days’ work to shoehorn in!
And this week was tremendously exciting for a number of other reasons too. Behold! Blood doning! Behold! snazzy dental hospital appointment where we see what sort of roots my teeth have and lay plans for their removal! Behold! The Bossman returns from doing bossly things in Forrin climes! And on the note of things Forrin: behold! I have secured some dodgy Forrin bloke* who is desperate enough to want to rent the spare room! This Thursday, even!
(People with attention spans shorter than my tendency to witter can probably stop reading now, that’s the main points pretty much covered. Except the weaponsmithing. Behold, I now write trailers within this very blog!)
*I should point out round about now that while everyone who has rented the spare room so far has been Forrin – two whole times! – there is no correlation with ‘dodgy’, for both have been upstanding and law-abiding. However; on both occasions I ended up with someone in my home who had no qualms at all about being incredibly rude to me at all times. Plenty of British people do that too, but I am really hoping it is not a Trend. Although I suppose, if it is a Trend, it is at least better than having someone in my home who makes off with the telly, but I think only Superman could lift that thing unaided. (My camera, on the other hand…)
I have a tentative theory that life does continue to hand you the same test over and over until you pass, so perhaps the test here is, Laying Down The Law In My Own Home, which I am very loathe to do, because I want it to be somewhere people feel welcome, and as if it is their home (although not quite to the extent that they explain in detail how much they hate me being in my home and fantasise openly about how great it would be if I just happened to vanish into thin air forever. This has happened. I dunno quite what they expected to happen next, but apparently it wasn’t a lease termination.) I am also slightly concerned that in a bid to get the test over with, (presumably thus opening the door for some new, even more horrible tests), I might start laying down the law before the poor sod has even unpacked, let alone had time to show any inclination to being rude. So I’m a bit terrified, in case that wasn’t quite clear. My brain has decided to help by running scenarios every night where Horrible Bosses Of Days Gone By take turns breaking my camera until I scream at them and they say, ‘Well done, I respect you now and will treat you as an equal.’ And I wake up shouting, ‘But that just makes you a coward and a bully, you bastard!’
I am gonna be so great to live with.
So the first half of the week was spent frantically tidying up (yes, I just did all that, it is back, don’t ask) and sorting the wines and looking out towels and so forth. And giving blood, in case this op means I can’t do it for another year, and going to the Dental Hospital, thus shortening the working week even further. They said to allow two hours for the x-rays. Someone must have told them where I work, however, because I was out the door in a quarter of that. Most miffed, I was, I had taken all the Sums with me to do in the waiting room. Actually, maybe that’s why I got papped out as soon as humanly possible. (So I got some bras. Marks and Sparks, you lie, I am not an E-cup. For which I am profoundly relieved.)
But! The x-ray machine! It was not one of those little cup-on-a-tube things they hold against your cheek while you try to look nonchalant about having a whole business card jammed upside your gums. This thing was a massive, sleek white Thing with Appendages! One of which, they brought up to right below your chin, while you stood in front of the machine and clung onto the handles under it, and then they fixed this… bit between your teeth and attached it to the Appendage; it was sort of like a freeze-frame of someone being attacked by a facehugger, I suppose. And then these big droopy arms went round and round your head. (God, I am so technically minded!) Basically, if I was shown an alien spacecraft controlled by brainwaves, I reckon the interface would look just like that. The nurse kept reassuring me that it was okay and it wasn’t going to touch me and I was doing really well – mercifully, the thing between my teeth stopped me being able to get all, ‘Shut up, you are ruining my fantasy in which I am piloting an alien spaceship with my brain!’
Dammit, I’m thirty-seven next month, how did that happen?
I now have appointment dates to have my wisdom teeth out, woo! Tragically, I got a bit over-excited and agreed that a local would be just fine. For the whole ‘cutting the gums open and peeling them back’ bit, as well as the whole ‘drilling out any bits of bone that are in the way’ bit. This was supposed to cut down on time off work for being sedated (there was this one time I was still sedated the next day, ooh it was awful, I apparently made lots of enquiries about second-hand JCBS which I do not recall whatsoever. These had nothing to do with the job.) However, on my return to the office, several colleagues pointed out that you probably can’t have bits of bone merrily sawn off everywhere and then come back and answer the phone all afternoon, so I am not sure what the best course of action is. (I’m not allowed any sick leave till August, ho hum, on account of that’s a year past when having too much work made me sick. I suspect, it’s Make Up The Hours time.)
And later on that very same day, my new lodger moved in. So far he has been quiet and polite and perfectly affable, although I am sure three months of the ‘tester’ lease is time enough for everything to go horribly wrong. And I have the deposit and the first month’s rent! Well, I did have them. There was a place left on the tool-making blacksmithing course, so now I don’t have them. I do, however, have a reservation in a hotel that is a mere half-click’s stagger from the forge, rather than the wrong end of a seven-mile round-trip slog on foot, and for a fairly cheap rate too, considering two all-you-can-eat meals a day are included (meals last time: Speedynoodle and scavenged blackberries). I am hopeful that massive doses of calories and rather less exhausted staggering means I will perform better! Touchwood!
Buoyed up by my
terror excitement at having blown so much money so quickly, I spent Friday night sitting in and editing a Victorian short story of the Lovecraft mythos variety, which I sent off to an online magazine who specialise in this sorts of thing. Ish. See! Already [it’s April. You are one quarter of the way through the year – Ed] my plan for 2012 is coming together! With all this domestic-drudgery-related dreck out of the way, I have Written a thing, and not only that, I have Sent It Off (which is the hard part, really). And for bonus points, I have Told Everyone About It, and then I will Tell Everyone About Getting Rejected and then I will get used to this failing in public lark and it will be like water off a duck’s back. Touchwood.
On Saturday, I belatedly approached the new lodger to swap tales of our lives (although it is not in any way possible to tell this just from the internet, honest, I talk a lot. I am trying to rein it in, in case it is rude.) For starters, what actual far-flung Forrin place is he from, and what is it like there? He looks Indian, and his name seems Indian, and he sounds Indian, but one can never tell and I don’t want to make a cultural faux pas!
He’s from Cardiff. Embarrassingly, I had to confess I’ve never been.
And only a short burst of Sums later, it was time to go pick the Bossman up from the airport (read: take bus to airport on own shekel, get in taxi with Bossman on Bossman’s shekel). I was way more excited about my ‘adventures’ than he was about his, for some reason, and told him all about the marvellous x-ray machine. In reply, he told me that there’s a one-hundred-percent correlation between being in one of those and a particular type of brain tumour. What? Oh, cock.
This time, I finally got to meet the Bossman’s mate who shows up when the Bossman is on the cusp of forrin travel, says hello and vanishes again. Turns out, he makes swords and he has a mate who makes crossbows (ooh) and we whiled away a merry hour salivating over Weapons We Would Love To Make Ourselves. (Turns out, AK47’s are incredibly easy to whip out as a cottage industry? Who knew? But he’s more interested in the art of the wheel-lock musket. Being of lesser skill, I’d settle for being able to turn out an AK. What use it would be after that, I have no idea, well, one, but I don’t like it much, but it would just be so cool being able to make the damn thing…)
I wonder, is it feasible to make a crossbow without special training? A miniature one that doesn’t need most of a kilometre’s clearance, for instance?
And after that: the home-made tank! No, I have no idea where I would keep it.
There was a slight fly in all this lovely ointment: the complete random stranger who said he could van my free (completely-non-tank-related) iron across town could not make it in the end. Hmm. Is this the start of the end of everything looking really rosy for a few glorious days?
If by ‘rosy’ I mean: sharing house with utter stranger of a Welshman, plans for having face mutilated, wad of cash blown on horrendous emotional rollercoaster With Sparks. Oh, and soon, the self-inflicted public humiliation of Failing At A Thing, when this story gets the knock-back!
I think I have this ‘looking forward to stuff’ thing wrong.