A week off has its merits. One can spend even more time speaking to friends. Rewatching those old favourites that treated you so well. Sunbathe. My week off came as somewhat of a forced injunction; a migraine can do that. The migraine I caught (I know they aren’t contagious but let me be dramatic), was one of those migraines that screams to remind you that you’ve never, in fact, had a migraine before. Apparently, headaches can be really bad. Migraines? Oh, they are so much worse. So yes, a week off from life can be scintillating, but the first three days of mine? They sucked.
To combat the growing resentment at being forced to Waste My Life, I decided to give myself the rest of the week off to enjoy pure indulgence. I lazed, I lounged. Thirty minutes later I felt guilty. I continued. By the end of the week, I was gasping for projects. How To Get Rich During Covid was Googled countless times, the book I never started was begun. The OC was watched for the third time through (some indulgences are Self-Improvement goals too). By the arrival of Monday morning, I had amounted a task list no parchment long enough existed for. Microsoft word scrolled it into a neat document though, and I recalled the Dark Ages had been overcome before the Three Day Migraine.
Somehow throughout this all, project Rescue Mother prevailed and her back pain has subsided, so that obligation has been nullified somewhat. I also baked enough for freeze-worthy amounts, so any cravings can be kept at bay for some time. Truly, there is no excuse to not begin the Scroll of Tasks. So I did. This morning. I must say, it feels good. I woke up this week with the ever-nearing termination of furlough and very real possibility of redundancy looming, and it offered the sound logic that Up really is the only way to go from here. Sabbatical denied, in other words.
Ever a necessary ingredient in these times, Father was my first go-to. ‘Is this idea a bit pie-in-the-sky?’ Smoothie in hand, he replies without judgment, ‘I don’t know what that is sweetie, but everyone’s a fraud, and you fake it better than most.’ Slurp goes the smoothie. This confused me on two counts — one: my father is absolutely not a fraud and knows exactly what he’s doing one hundred percent of the time, and two, did he just confirm I was a fraud? Befuddlement clearly written on my face, he invited me to step into his office. A famed line from my father, I knew I was committing to a two-hour conversation at the least. I inhaled. I exhaled. I was in my father’s hands now; I was safe. When we emerged, some overexcitement, dream-crushed, dream-rehabilitated-to-realistic-but-less-fun-status, life reaffirming hours later, I was satisfied. Fears quelled, room was made for hunger to surface, and noticing the light fading outside I was happy to recognise dinner time.
I should have known. Mother time is not human time. Mother eats while she cooks. Mother cannot possibly eat dinner after preparing dinner. No. Mother must enjoy everyone’s company as they end their days and gather in the family room one by one. She must regale the same story for each person’s arrival. Pause for wine pouring and crisp serving. It’s a lovely trait of hers. But it’s a lovely trait when I’ve driven home from London on a Friday night and have prepped for a late dinner. It is quite another when lunch was fifteen million hours ago and the rest of us who favor real food over wine snacking have struggled through stressful conversations or work mishaps or just general life. When the kitchen is filled with the hours of her cooking, it’s plain miserable. My stomach churned as I sat with mum as she poured the Bamba I scoured for on Amazon for her, yet again. I debated if there was time for a nap to drown my stomach’s wails — there wasn’t and I sat, ever fearful of the pending migraine that threatened to resurface from my body’s deafening pleas.
I know now that I am not the only person who feels so passionately about the topic of food. The Promised Spinach, which I posted a week or so ago, gained so much traction I nearly felt sorry for that certain North West London cookie company we all know that’s blown up on the popularity scale since lockdown. Social media is admin, guys, appreciate the effort. It is perhaps only this experience that makes me a little more forgiving to said cookie company for giving their Cookie Giveaway to a totally undeserving random who did not comment anywhere near as much as myself or other parties who outdid even my crazed efforts to win. I am still sore about it. I have, in my bitterness, undertaken a mission to bake the most perfect cookies myself so as to never rely on the clearly corrupt forces of institutionalised cookie makers again. I vow to share the winning recipe once I’ve nailed it. Project overload, perhaps. But sometimes Duty asks a lot of us. This is my Duty; you and your stomachs are not alone.
On this inspiring note, I shall leave you only temporarily so I can get on with ticking off the Task Scroll and you can get on with either much the same or much of not much. Remember:
- The rain has come, which means less morons Breaking Distance.
- Nandos has reopened (I really don’t get this hype, just grill chicken literally any which way. I’m pretty sure they use their cashiers to do it). Get it or not, apparently it’s good news.
I’m interrupting the Good Thoughts bullets this week because I have a far better sign off, one which requires a stand-alone sentence and rounds off the title of today’s article in a far more meaningful way than my gripes and moans. To introduce two young adults moving into Serious Adults, I bring you the topic of the next article, and the most talked-about news since Covid:
Adam and Gemma are Pregnant!
13 weeks in, happy, healthy and nicknamed Pebble (though Lemon sized this week). The next Alster in town might just be single-handedly saving us all from Pandemic Blues.
Keep well, keep safe,
Your Average Lockdown Friend x