I've been having something of a long dark teatime of the soul this week. Nothing profound, just a bunch of stuff that's piled up and got the better of me. Commuting has been more difficult than usual this week, due to the various farces that are the London Underground and First Capital Connect, and that always grinds flat spots on me. I've been getting home sevenish, cooking dinner, eating dinner, conking out in front of News 24, regaining consciousness around ten o'clock, then dragging myself upstairs and staring in horror at a story I really ought to have finished by now, because the deadline is so close I can hear it approaching. And staring. And staring. I don't know if you've ever had a really neat idea for a story, sat down to write it, got the first couple of paragraphs down, and then ground to a complete halt, as if the thing that connects the words in your head to your fingers has short-circuited. That's what it's like. Normally deadlines don't faze me; I sail right up to them and deliver the bacon and people are either quite admiring that I can do that or really pissed off that I do it. This time, the wheels have come off. I know what I want to do, I have the whole story in my head, it should be a simple matter of transcribing it, but every time I sit down to do it, nothing happens.
Last Sunday morning our neighbour on the ground floor knocked on the door and presented us with a bit of facia which had apparently fallen off the dormer of our loft conversion sometime on Saturday and crashed down into the garden. This has really got beyond the joke; we can't use the Shower In The Sky because the shower tray's not properly supported and every time we try and use it a gap opens up between the tray and the wall - even though the builders were here last month to fix it. Not being able to use the shower is an inconvenience. Bits falling off the outside of the house is rather more serious. Someone's going to get hurt. I think Bogna's winding up to sue the builders - she got a surveyor in on Tuesday to do an independent report. A representative of the builders was supposed to be here as well, because of the bits falling off the house, but he cried off. Something had come up. The need to take the piss, obviously.
I was interviewing someone this week and the conversation got around to ages and life expectancies (it was one of those sort of stories) and it turned out that we were both forty-seven. Which reminded me that I'm now about nine years younger than my father was when he died, and about twelve years younger than my mother was when she died. I talked to the (still sadly LJ-less) OJM about this a couple of years ago and then I buried it, but it's begun to bother me again.
Kuron, one of our cats, has been losing weight for the past month or so. He doesn't seem ill - he's as big a pain in the arse as he's ever been and he's certainly not off his food - but we took him to the vet a week or so ago to get him checked over. The vet did the usual stuff and couldn't find anything wrong with him, but the x-ray machine at his practice isn't exactly cutting-edge and he recommended we take him up to the Queen Mother Hospital at the Royal Veterinary College in Potters Bar for a second opinion because they have state-of-the-art equipment to do x-rays and sonography and diagnostic equipment local vets can only dream of. We know the Queen Mother Hospital of old, from Dougal's bout of pyothorax four years ago, and they're marvellous people - I've told Bogna I want to be treated by them if I get really sick - so Bogna took Kuron up there on Thursday. And it seems all the obvious options are absent. All they've managed to find is that he's anaemic. Now, this may be because the bloods were taken under deep sedation - he's not nearly as chilled as Dougal, who you can stick a needle into and he'll just purr hopefully - and may have affected the results, so they're going to keep him in over the weekend and do some more blood tests when the effects of the sedative have worn off. We're going up to see him tomorrow, although I suspect he won't want to come home: he's found himself in a place where people give him total attention twenty-four hours a day and cater to his every whim, which we are unable to do because we are not twenty-four-hour veterinary professionals. We'll see.
Finally, because pds_lit
is a fan of bats, I offer you this
, and I want to ask a question of the members of The Villages Women's Institute. I'm not really intimately
familiar with this subject, but just how
hungover would you have to be not to notice there was a bat nesting in your bra?
I've also been having terrible dreams. I got about three hours' sleep last night, maybe five the night before. When I do wake up I feel awful, physically and mentally, although once my brain's booted-up, around two in the afternoon, I've been producing heroic amounts of copy. Which makes my employers happy. I suspect I can keep doing this for quite a long time, although not for ever. Which is a bridge we'll have to cross one day.