Friday, December 18, 2015

Retired II - the Sequel

And just when I started warming to the idea that having a job wasn’t so bad after all.

I don’t mind, really. And considering I was hired two years ago on a six-month contract, I have nothing to complain about. So I’m not complaining. But I do wish I could be made redundant in, say, May or June. Why is it always at the end of November, when the weather is crap and the most rapacious weeks of the year are already grabbing us by the lapels and barking at us like street hawkers? It’s like, “Merry Christmas; you’re fired!”

And, unlike my previous retirement, which came in with a bang, this one arrived with a whimper. Note that my first official day of Second Retirement was the end of November and I’m only now getting around to mentioning it. The first one was “Yippee! No more commuting to work, no more meetings, no more reports, I can do whatever I want to all day!” while this one is more like “I’m up, dressed and in my office; shouldn’t I be working?”

The thing is, when you work from home, they can make you redundant, but they can’t make you clean out your desk and leave the building. So it feels weird, like you’re still at work, but there’s nothing to do. So you make another cup of tea and check your e-mail. Again.

It doesn’t help that my alarm still goes off at 5 AM and that I am up and dressed and ready for work by 5:30 or 6:00. The idea is, I am supposed to be working on my own projects but, even at the end of my third week, I’m nagged by a misplaced sense of guilt and the feeling that I should be doing something else. Consequently, my writing has not taken off in the big way I had hoped it would. In fact, it’s still sputtering along the apron looking for a runway.

My talent for slacking off aside, I do have an excuse: More often than you might think (and certainly more often than I had anticipated), time that I could have spent writing (which, I hasten to add, does not mean time that I would have spent writing) was spent, instead, in a variety of other locations where my presence was urgently required, such as the bank, the solicitors, the audiologist, the mall (hey, it’s Christmas, I needed to be there!) or staring over the shoulder of the guy who came to look at the water stain in the hall ceiling where the roof leaked.

I do a lot of this these days.
So, yeah, my days have not exactly lived up to the super-writer ideal, where I jump out of bed brimming with creativity and pound out 1,000 words before breakfast. The most creative thing I do most days is try to think of a good reason to get out of bed. Then I stare at the keyboard for a few hours, run some errands an attempt to convince myself that I don’t need a nap.

Still, I have hopes that, once things settle into a normal routine, I will finally get back to doing what I feel I ought to be doing.

As long as they don’t offer me my old job back.


  1. I seriously think anyone who can devote their whole day to writing must have a really messy house, dirty clothes and no food in the fridge. I find my domestic duties get in the way all the time.

    1. Sorry I didn't reply sooner, I was doing the laundry ;)