Well, I was going to go swimming yesterday but by the time I had written my column for February and had a nearly two-hour assessment appointment with a local counselling centre, telling my entire life story and that of two generations of ancestors, there was no time left. I did plan to go to the lovely café just opposite the pool and have a naughty cake, but when I’d trekked there in the rain it turned out to have closed early for half term.
So, I planned to go swimming today instead, but having spent the morning fruitlessly trying to get son to finish his Film Studies essay, and then messed about on the computer to make myself feel better, by the time I got out of the house I was too hungry and had to go and get lunch first (at the lovely café which was now open). Then I had to sit and let lunch go down a bit, and then I walked over to the gym and guess what? The women’s changing room was closed today because a maintenance man was in there. So instead of swimming I went and bought a pair of new winter shoes which I’ve been eying for some time. Which is against my principle of always buying shoes in the end of season sale, and putting them in a cupboard for next year when the current pair will have worn out. Instead of which I paid full price, even though there were much cheaper shoes that would have done, but I didn’t like them as much. Too bad – at least I end up with shoes I actually like. And walking to the shoe shop made up for not going swimming.
Tomorrow I am not going to try to go swimming, because I’m on Premier Radio in the morning and then going to a poetry competition prize-giving at lunchtime (with Cindy who is interviewing me on Premier and happens also to be going to the prize-giving). Tune in about 11.00 and you should hear me droning on about being depressed.
PS I also put my computer glasses in for new lenses on my way out today, which means that I am now typing this wearing my varifocals, and can only see by tilting my head back and looking down my nose at the screen, thus giving the impression that I think I am superior to my computer.
Have made some progress with the book this week, but mostly restoring the thousand or so words I think I lost from what I wrote for Chapter Three last week. And today I just had to give up and go back to bed, and when I got up, to go swimming to make myself feel better. It worked – sort of.
PS Still haven’t remembered the third thing I saw on my trip to town last week. Well, it can’t have been all that interesting…
Yesterday on the way back from swimming, I discovered a whole new secret compartment in my rucksack, which I had never noticed in the three or four years I’ve had it. It will be just right for putting my jewellery in while I swim. Of such small things is happiness made.
More importantly (and equally rewardingly) I have left the Terribly Tenacious Therapist, and I feel good about it. It felt like leaving school. Right now I’m not in a hurry to find another one. Suffice it to say that it won’t be a Cognitive Behavioural therapist.
And finally, I have ordered almost all my Christmas presents by mail (charity catalogues). I feel smug.
What a pleasant day I have had. Slept lateish, and as Genius Brat was still off school, decided not to go to Pilates and leave him alone. Then The Grouch came home unexpectedly as the customer he was going to was not in, so I left him in charge and walked to the gym, where I swam 20 short lengths and sat in the Jacuzzi for a while. Then to coffee and the crossword at my latest favourite café, and by the time I’d finished both the coffee and the crossword, it was time for lunch so I stayed on and had that as well. Then another walk home, followed by a little sleep in the afternoon.
Finally this evening I drove (in rush hour, that was the only unpleasant bit) to Hackney where I spent four hours helping to stuff and stamp a Catholic Worker mailing. Stuffing with me, unexpectedly, was the daughter of a former director of the London Mennonite Centre, whom I first met when she was about four or five, and who is now 21 and over from America to do voluntary work. She has grown up into a lovely young lady and it was a delight to see her.
The stuffing team was fed with a wholesome veggie meal and two sorts of cake, and they were still stuffing (but near the end) when I left just after 10.00. It is such a treat for me to work as part of a team, an experience you don’t normally get as a freelance writer.
So: exercise, indulgence, mental challenge and a ‘work frolic’ all in the same day. Really ready for bed now…