Sunday, September 06, 2009

Of loss and prawn cocktails

Or Week-ending Odds n Sods...

It's been a bizarre week in many ways. It started a bit like summer and it's ending with me sitting here in no less than 3 layers - September has arrived like a March. I started the week with more friends than I finished it with - and amazingly that isn't a reference to my job - which I have learned in the past is something I don't ever discuss on these pages. But, my return to work was just about every one of my worst paranoid nightmares come true - and on the whole it could have been much better...

It's been a week of change for some of my friends. Tonight, an old friend came round for a cuppa and seems reborn. She's is on the verge of finally walking away from a loveless and at times terrifying relationship that has been going on almost as long as my own terrifying (but for different reasons) relationship. It was a remarkable change in many ways and left me hoping this wasn't a false start. I've seen people in similar situations who still end up staying put.

I watched a film that could well be the best film I've seen in the last 20 years. District 9 just happens to be an extraordinary SF film that could just appeal to people who hate anything SF, fantasy or horror related. Yes, it's choc-a-bloc full of aliens, weird technology and almost impenetrable South African accents, but it's just fucking brilliant. Take away the aliens and the technology and this could be a desperate tale of apartheid.

On Monday, I argued with a good friend; one of my dearest. It was the culmination of weeks of growing anger between both of us. You know how it is, sometimes someone special or important in your life and you start to see things slightly differently and instead of doing the sensible thing and sorting it out, it ends up driving a widening wedge into a tiny, repairable wound. I think its human nature to take things too far sometimes. Plus, there's always a victim, whether it's between friends, lovers, husband & wife or a couple in a 50 year friendship - one person will at some point feel that not enough is being done by the other. I've had friendships where I've felt I've done all the hard work and I'm sure the same could be said vice versa. The mind is a powerful weapon against your own well-being and once you start to lose trust in someone, your brain will exacerbate the inkling - the brain is a fantastic place to grow things; not just positive imaginative things, but dark and negative ones too.

This falling out can be blamed on many things; both of us are probably trying very hard to out-justify the other in our own heads; but it boiled down to one thing in the end - honesty or the lack of it. But its difficult when you're as tenacious, as I am at times, to sit back and take things as they come and I had a little too much time on my hands to dwell on miscommunications and false expectations. It's horrible being let down, for whatever reason it might be, but sometimes the fall out is much worse...

Subsequently, that and a dreadful pub lunch experience and a thundering headache spoiled Bank Holiday Monday and flowed into the Tuesday - my last day before returning to work - meaning that most of the good intentions I had about my final days of sick note land failed to materialise.

However, things perked up on Thursday when I met up with someone I hadn't seen for nearly a year - proving to me at least that times flies far too fast the older you get. For Cam, it seemed like ages since the last time we saw each other, for me it seemed like yesterday we were in a studio in North London being photographed for another weird and wonderful picture by my old buddy Mitch. Cam's 24, so that probably explains why the last 11 months seemed much longer than they did for me - but I have all manner of time theories that I can't be arsed to go into. Much was consumed and I discovered a new meaning to the word 'special'.

I remember saying recently that I'd had one of the best weeks of the year; despite not having had anyone die for a while and not having the pain and stress I've suffered for best part of 2009, and despite meeting up with an old friend and having some good times; this week has been one of the worst, not just in 2009 but for many years. It's been bad in a mentally debilitating way. It's been a week to sap your confidence; for delivering damaging metaphoric body blows and if I wasn't trying to be so (unusually) positive about things, I probably would have been reaching for the antidepressants again.

Talking about pain; my left arm hates me. It's going through a series of exercises to rebuild the muscle that has wasted away over the last few months and despite me only having a flimsy bright pink stretchy thing (I'm moving to a green one on Thursday) it's proving to be bloody hard work and at times it leaves me with a dull ache, not to different from the dull ache I started to get back in December. Or in other words, I'm still not entirely convinced about Mr S*****'s 100% fixed proclamation. That's probably a mixture of fear and resignation that I can't be lucky enough to have something done quick, efficiently and without further complications - I still find it too easy to take the glass half empty route...

On a more positive note - Roger and I found a decent pub hosting a small but perfectly formed beer festival. The Red Lion in Broughton (near Kettering) is yet another pub we've found in the county that seems to be abandoning 16 lagers and John Smiths in favour of something a little more palatable and real. Lovely old building, very friendly landlord and it looks like it has potential to be a potential eatery (but I won't hold my breath about that).

I somehow suspect the next week could get worse than the one just gone and current circumstances are hardly going to make me a nice passive bystander. I need, yes I really am going to say this, a holiday. Ideally 2 weeks on a Caribbean beach with no hurricanes forecast; so Dorset in mid-September will have to suffice.

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