diary of old and new books #6


I have walked many miles this week and read and written very little. When it is sunny, I find it impossible to stay inside. A couple of times I walk until my feet hurt. I have missed this. I am back “at” work and I am glad and I am sad. Everyone seems to feel about the same. It is like we are all trying to prop each other up but have run out of the requisite beams. I watch an entire season of a French horror show called Marianne. The house is a tip. I have what feels like a lot of union meetings. In my role as equalities rep, I make an 83 point document about what can be done to improve our place of work for marginal current and prospective employees. Looking at it makes me feel equally proud (of what we might be able to achieve) and tired (because a lot of its contents are long overdue and because I anticipate its implementation will be a slog.) I put something out into the world and immediately wish it were a boomerang. I happily watch some absolute dross. I have a weird inexplicable sickness in the middle of the week and just sleep for four hours in the afternoon and have a full night's sleep a few hours later. It does not feel good. I have never been good at this but notice now that I absolutely cannot distinguish between a body feeling brought on by sadness or anxiety and food poisoning or the fact of having eaten too many onions. It turns out, at 2am, to be migraine. Everyone I know and don't know seems, understandably, to be breaking under the weight of the pandemic this week. Everyone mentions the anniversary coming down the pike. Despite this I have a lot of excellent, encouraging discussions about friendship, dating, relationships, health, Bad Television, writing, and so on. I laugh a lot. At some point I join a grief circle. Dad is out of the hospital and has been given an interim placement in a care home. I am glad he is safe and I also know there's a little kernel of devastation waiting to pop somewhere in me. The cats are on heat again, I love the way they behave when they are and how noisy they are. I keep forgetting to book their appointment. Today in the park in the morning a tiny kid in a bright red snow suit is sitting in a circle of five dogs and saying "more!". I love her. I walk from that park to the rye and meet my friend and colleague. We talk about when we last saw each other, relationships, motivation, children's art, grief a little bit. It's so windy my face becomes a patchwork of different reds. I have another union meeting. I eat dill crisps. I take some books to the bath but read nothing. This week has not been but next week is Reading Week. I eat a tart green apple.