Monday 18 December 2023: Up with the lark

Image by Terri Cnudde from Pixabay

Well, not so much up with the lark as up with the poet, but you get the drift.

I had a very busy day ahead of me on Friday so I got up with the poet to give myself a head start. The fencer (🤺) asked if he could come Friday morning and when we said yes, asking what time, he said 10:30am, which was perfect. Or it would have been. 10:30am would have given me plenty of time to have breakfast, get washed and dressed, and even start work.

Reader, he was early.

So that meant I had to skip washing my hair, quickly get dressed, and move the car off the drive. Only I couldn’t move the car off the drive because someone had parked across it. DESPITE THERE BEING PLENTY OF ROOM IN FRONT OF THE HOUSE.

We have a white line in the road across our drive. The person who lived here for years and years was a policeman and in his old age he required medical attendance. So the driveway had to be kept clear for that at least. Not only that, though, the person whose drive is diagonally opposite ours also needs the space to swing out of her drive.

AND we need the extra lineage on either side so that WE have the swing too for our cars, when we’re reversing on or driving off. (There’s a stone wall directly opposite with no pavement in between it and the road acting as a buffer. And walls don’t bend if you hit them; cars do.) The poet’s car is a long estate (erm, station-wagon?), although granted it isn’t as long as a long-wheelbase wide pickup truck, but he still needs the swing.

I waited for the van driver to come back, pointed out the white line, and went and got in my car while he drove away. I took my car around the block and the fencer (🤺) reversed his long-wheelbase wide pickup truck on IN ONE GO. It sometimes takes me two or three goes in my little car, and he did it in one in his truck. Wow, impressed, much.

Then, just after I closed the gates behind him (to contain the dog), someone else parked across the drive. “I’m just picking Elsie up,” she said. “I’ll only be 5 or 10 minutes.”

THERE WAS PLENTY OF ROOM IN FRONT OF THE HOUSE STILL, especially as my little car had now replaced the long-wheelbase wide pickup truck.

“Park in front of the yellow car,” I said with my best smile.

“But I’ll only be 5 or 10 minutes,” she said again.

“It’s okay,” said I, stretching the smile even wider. (Perhaps I looked a bit evil doing that…) “You can park in front of the yellow car, there’s PLENTY OF ROOM and it isn’t a problem.”

“Oh, oh,” she stammered. “I’ll park there, then, and give her a call to let her know where I am.”

Uh? Elsie would still be able to see her. Our houses are practically opposite each other. I fought the urge to continue the conversation, apologise and tell her that yes it was perfectly fine to PARK ON A WHITE LINE AND BLOCK OUR DRIVE FOR 10 MINUTES, and went back inside.

Big sigh.

Anyway, I had to let the dog out then so he could see the fencer (🤺), say hello, and relax. Then finally – finally – I made it to my desk and started the above rant. A new character then started to percolate inside my head, called Elsie. But I had to push her away and get on with the job in hand.

I turned off the internet, started my first Pomodoro, and off I went.

One of the problems of getting up early and having breakfast early is that you get hungry earlier too. By my first break, I was ready for a piece of cake with my cup of tea. Once through dinner, though, I was okay again.

I carried on working for the rest of the day without any time off other than 10-minute Pomodoros every 50 minutes. That gave me chance to make another drink, nip to the loo, let the dog out, or whatever. The poet came home from work, he’d been on a distant site again for the best part of the day, and he went out and got us a takeaway for tea.

I broke for tea and started again, finally finishing at close to midnight before sending the book I was editing back to the author. I would have liked to have got it to him sooner in the week but life intervened. One of the things I need to prioritise in the coming year is to budget sufficient time to do these jobs in the first place, and then add in a contingency buffer.

Hopefully I’ll get there. Eventually.

Today I’m back to working offline for the best part of the day, and I’m going to try out my new TickTick time management system. It’s half the price of ClickUp per year so it’d be great if it did everything I needed it to. I’m working on two of my own stories: THE SECRET OF WHITEHORSE FARM and ANGEL WITHOUT WINGS (the first of the fallen angel stories).

The countdown to Christmas has finally begun.

2 thoughts on “Monday 18 December 2023: Up with the lark

  1. These idiots who think that because it’s “just ten minutes” they have the right do park wherever they want are so offensive. And it’s never “just ten minutes.”

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