It’s week 83 and the novelty of the work commute is already starting to wear a bit thin as I struggle to clock up my daily steps
• HERE’S the thing right, I honestly don’t think I’ve time for this much-hyped and much talked about Bank Holiday coming our way in November. It’s a lovely gesture, and I don’t want to sound ungrateful or anything, but I wonder could we just put it on ice until February when we’d enjoy it a bit more? When we’d have a bit more bandwidth, as they say. It’s like we’ve gone from having nothing all in the diary, to having way too much on, in a really short space of time. On top of that there’s all those doomsday warnings to buy early for Christmas (a hazardous move when we haven’t even had the Late Late Toy Show yet); to get in the home heating oil before prices go properly through the roof; to source a generator and while we’re at it to get some plans done up for a bunker to hold enough supplies to last six months. That’s on top of ‘doing’ Hallowe’en (snap apple won’t cut it anymore) and keeping on top of the tsunami of Confirmations and Communions that show no signs yet of abating. I literally haven’t got the ‘energy’ for it all. Controversial, but how bad would the odd power outage be every now and then? At least then you could have a nice early night for yourself. Just saying.
• Of course there’s the really annoying, I mean organised, people who have Christmas in the bag already. Give me strength. They’re probably the ones who also have their tickets booked for Lapland or local destinations which have already sold out. I mean I’d love the opportunity to wear my fur-lined white snow boots that are just a little too ‘extra’ for West Cork too, but c’mon, have we learned anything from the pandemic? Less is more and all the rest. Bring back Leapland is what I say, where you were guaranteed to know Santa’s helper and get bumped up the queue. Besides, the climate is so properly confused that we’ll more than likely get snow ourselves this year (it’s already forecast for later this month). Either that, or it will be horribly mild (and we’ll all be passing out from the heat, as opposed to the sherry).
• The other thing hurting my head a lot this week is that the five-year-old’s latest Netflix binge is something called Scaredy Cats. If it’s unsuitable just don’t tell me but the main character is a girl who turns into a cat. Believable, I know. The dog is also an avid TV watcher. You can probably figure out where this is going. Turns out I was way off when I felt she (the dog) was failing a bit and might be on her way out. There’s nothing wrong with her eyes anyway that’s for sure. Give me (more) strength.
• Anyway for anyone interested I’m still very much enjoying being in the office on a hybrid basis, just not the traffic so much. It’s quite remarkable the amount of people on the road in the morning who do not seem to be remotely focussed on their estimated arrival time, or even have a valid reason to be out at all, except, it seems, to bring on a fit of serious rage in me. Also, I can’t help but feel quite venomous towards the people I see out for their morning constitutional while I’m stuck behind someone doing 40 in a 100km zone. I know these very relaxed and happy looking people could be retired, on a day off, or be about to start a 14-hour shift but I can’t help it (the irony that I wouldn’t be out walking even if I was at home isn’t lost on me). It’s mainly because one massive thing I’ve noticed since being back in the office is how hard it is to get the steps in every day. Once you take the trips to the clothes line, the fridge and the back door to let the dog in and out, and sign for deliveries, it’s tricky. Of course a plus is the fact that we’ve less time to devote to dinners (what? We’re commuting again!) which eliminates a lot of the guilt for serving up potato waffles, sausage and egg on a Wednesday. On that note, I think it’s time to throw away the starter dough and the fermenting kimchi as I’m pretty sure they’re not meant to look or smell like that.
• I know I’m coming across very angry this week but another thing that has me worked up is the amount of rubbish in our ditches right now. Well it’s been there all the time, but extensive trimming of roadside ditches in my area over the past week has revealed the full horror of it. On a small stretch I counted double digit discarded face masks, along with the usual crisp packets and plastic bottles etc. I don’t like to preach (except at home) and I’m far, far from perfect (the odd recyclable ends up in my rubbish bin, some weeks I drink more than recommended units of alcohol, and I curse under my breath a lot) but in all fairness what sort of dopes still think it’s ok to do this?
• Finally how many of us were secretly thrilled when Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp went down on Monday? Once the initial hand twitching had eased obviously. I was going to bite the bullet and watch Squid Game, the most watched Netflixshow of all time, but I didn’t want to risk ruining an otherwise blissful evening