(May 7 – May 13)

I’m finally taking a few days off, following several weeks of dithering over when and how much leave to take, or whether to take any time off at all.
I don’t have any specific reasons for taking leave, other than to have the chance to get on with a bit of writing and maybe get a few odd jobs out of the way, such as getting the car serviced.
I had originally decided to break my week off across two weeks (a week is a decent break, but can sometimes end up feeling a bit long when what you really want is to have an extended weekend) giving me three days off this week, then Monday and Tuesday next week.
However, given how unrelaxing this week ended up being, I’ll be thinking before taking any more leave…


I’ve booked the car in for its service. I ask if it’s possible to have it back before 2m so I can collected the Elderbeast from his recently rescheduled PEAC class. They have it done by midday, which is awesome. However, the rest of the day [off] is spent going back and forth between here, there and everywhere, and isn’t particularly relaxing.
When I eventually start cooking dinner, the Kinderbesten are so noisy playing together that I resort to wearing the Elderbeast’s noise cancelling gaming headphones. They actually help, although my stress levels still reach critical levels.
After silence (i.e. bedtime) finally falls, I put my flaky internet to the test by watching the first episode of The Rain on Netflix. It’s good, but it’s constantly driven forward by characters making really, really dumb decisions and I’m not sure I can watch an entire series where I basically hope everyone will die horribly.


Another day off, but I have to head into work to deliver a preso. As usual I partly regret agreeing to do it, but am also incredibly grateful for the opportunity. I arrive stupidly early, but this gives me time to grab coffee and pick up a few books about fairy tales (for a possible upcoming podcast project) from the University library.
The preso goes well, although it’s a very subdued audience today. Hopefully they still got something out of it.
On the way home I have to: pick up my new jeans; buy a plunger for my blocked kitchen sink; buy Mother’s Day presents from the Kinderbesten; and buy a birthday present for the party the Kinderbeast has been invited to at the weekend.
Shopping goes successfully, and after this I finally get an afternoon of sitting and writing. Exactly what this holiday was meant to be.


This is, supposedly, the first (and only) proper day of my holiday; the day when I have the whole day to sit and write and relax–at least until it’s time for the school run. The phone technicians turn up at 11am to fix my phone ports (disconnecting the extra ports, and leaving just the main one active–as requested by NBN Co before they’ll look at my disconnecting connection). This ends up requiring me to move the router into the bedroom, where the main phone port is, and thus rearranging a lot of wiring and a few powerline connections. Hassle!
I then end up with No Internet At All. With my flakey NBN it’s almost impossible to test whether the socket is working properly or not, but the signs are it’s really definitely not. I call my ISP. They find nothing wrong with the line this time, and suggest it might be the modem at fault. I scour Gumtree for a decent modem I can use for testing (and that would make a worthwhile spare) and arrange to collect it after work tomorrow.
I end up spending almost the entire day trying to work out how to properly test and diagnose my lack of internet, and end up incredibly stressed about everything. The litany of tiny, inconsequential things going collectively and constantly wrong is really starting to get to me.
After school, I take the Elderbeast to see Avengers: Infinity War, which at least provides some respite. It’s exactly how I imagined it to be … and I won’t be detailing that here just in case of spoiling any late viewers.


First day back at work. I’m tired all day, but being at the office is, perhaps predictably, less stressful than being at home—at least I have internet here and nothing breaks on me.
On the way home I pick up the router I found on Gumtree. The seller turns out to be a young, very pleasant kid. I plug the router in when I get home but the result is the same: no internet. This definitely suggests that the problem is the internet, and not with either of my routers.
I manage to survive the rest of the evening, though it passes in something of a haze. I retreat to bed as early as I can, read for a bit, then turn my light off. I’m tired and feel odd, as if I’m coming down with something.


I wake up from a dream about going on holiday with an ex-girlfriend from long ago, then returning home to my mother’s house. It’s something of a rude shock when I wake up and realise I’m living a completely different life now. The girlfriend in question was possibly my most significant relationship from my teen years. I ended up treated her pretty poorly, but I had the chance a few years afterwards to apologise, and (hopefully) to be forgiven.
I’m unable to get back to sleep after the dream, but it arrives shortly before my alarm anyway. So, I get up and write the thing that you’re reading right now. I can’t help but feel that being plunged so solidly into a semi-fictional past is intended to deliver some sort of message or meaning to me, as if dreams were sentient and not just a random whim of my subconscious.
But still … why that person? Why that part of my past? Why that fictionalised memory?


We get to go to a new place for games today: a friend moved house in the recent(ish) past and today is the first time we’ve descended upon her abode for games. We also get to meet a couple of new people, and—more importantly—their dog.
For dinner, I decide to skip traditional #childfree dinner in favour of duck, which I’ve been craving for about a year now. It’s pretty damn tasty, but I won’t be rushing to the duck counter again—especially at those prices!
A repeat viewing of The Raid ends up being the order for my Saturday night. It remains as outstanding as the first time. Even better: it’s relatively short, so I’m able to grab an early night and finally read The Injection; an awesome graphic novel that I was given for my birthday. It’s virtually perfect: the art style of Locke & Key and the storytelling style of Alan Moore. I immediately add the other volumes to my wish list.


My friend Seb comes over for our second Doctor Who Brunch, which is a great way to start the day. Today we get in two stories, which still leaves me time to prepare a few dinners for the rest of the week before the kinderbesten return home (I’m forever spending the week cursing myself for not preparing dinners ahead of time—this week I will not be that person!)
For Sunday Night Movietime with the Elderbeast I finally watch Predestination, which is not at all the film I was expecting, but is very excellent and completely blows both of our brains apart. I do like having my brain broken just in time for Monday …


Monday The Rain 1×01
Tuesday Monty Python
Wednesday Avengers: Infinity War
Thursday n/a
Friday Drag Me To Hell
Saturday The Raid
Sunday Doctor Who: Spearhead From Space
Doctor Who: City Of Death


Monday Aliens: Harvest
Tuesday Long way to a small angry planet
Wednesday lots of articles about Infinity War
Thursday n/a – too tired
Friday n/a
Saturday Injection
Sunday Aliens comics


Monday Beef stir fry
Tuesday JFC
Wednesday Macca’s
Thursday Chips, eggs and beans
Friday Daal
Saturday Duck
Sunday Carbonara