Aaaaaaargh! How do you do it?

Surely Time management can only work if you have Time in the first place?

I got up nice and early this morning, full of vim and verve, ready to crack on with my book, ‘Evhen & Uurth.’ (It’s a working title so it can be excused for the time being.) I had two hours before I’d have to go out to work – I’m a self-employed dog walker, or Pet Professional as I rather snootily prefer – and I’d planned on addressing the following with my characters who have been stranded around page #80 for the past several months:

  •  I needed to rouse De’Ath from his drunken stupor and help him get his shit together;
  •  I needed to work on the character of Corolious the raven as he sets flight on his first errand. He was to be my main character when I started out, but I’ve found others have somehow developed into stronger personalities already;  
  • I had prepare Four Fingers Freddy and Radnor Park for their journey into the Mountains of Gaarg;
  • I had a couple of things in mind for Shorty le Boeuf and his, ‘assistant,’ Biffa. A peaceful hour or so would let me decide their next move;
  • Junior God, Ancor, and his small team at Soul Nourishment were about to be placed in a very awkward and embarrassing situation. 

 

So here’s what I did:

  • I cleaned and disinfected the hallway floor after one of my elderly cats puked all over it;
  • I prepared my business invoices for tomorrow;
  • I spent an age texting various people after two members of my tennis team advised injuries and unavailability for our match at the weekend;
  • I was very short-tempered with two telephone cold-callers;
  • I spent fifteen minutes on Facebook – obviously.
  • I had breakfast;
  • I went to work.

I was quiet at work today. I finished early and returned home full of vim and verve, ready to crack on with my book, ‘Evhen & Uurth.’

And now I’m writing this blog post and listening to Led Zepplin, cranked up to eleven.

 

Hey ho – tomorrow’s another day.

_______________

Fall in New England (versus) Autumn in West of Scotland.

New England - Fall - colours I’ve never witnessed it first hand, but I believe New England is absolutely glorious in the Fall. It would certainly be hard to argue otherwise, given the images we here in Scotland see via television movies and the like.

Glasgow is some 13 degrees further north than Boston. It sits on roughly the same latitude as Novosibirsk Oblast (Russia) so perhaps I shouldn’t be so surprised by the contrasting perceptions of the year’s third season.

But it doesn’t stop me feeling a tad jealous.

Here’s how I see it:

New England - Fall - bridgeNew England: couples walk romantically hand in hand through the woods. They scatter the dry, brightly coloured leaves as they walk, kicking them into the air for the gentle autumnal breeze to cushion their fall back to earth.

West of Scotland: couples walk hand in hand through the woods. The word ‘romantically’ is omitted, for they are merely providing ballast to prevent the other from slipping on the soggy, rain-soaked leaves.

New England: on a bright, sunny day, a happy, smiling middle-aged man contentedly blows the brittle leaves into neat, uniform piles on his manicured, picket fence surrounded lawn. He then effortlessly lifts them into the appropriate refuse bin, which he places on the sidewalk for collection by the local  waste collection agency.

Houston - Autumn - drabWest of Scotland: on a dreicht, overcast and damp day, a miserable, brow-beaten middle-aged man loses the coin toss / argument / will to live and his wife sends him into the overgrown garden. He accidentally bends the leaf-rake on the second sweep of the heavy, sodden leaves. For the next hour he pushes the leaves into little manageable bundles with his feet, which he then stoops to lift into the appropriate refuse bin. He finally risks a hernia by dragging to the pavement for (eventual) collection by the local council.

New England: little mammals take advantage of the new, insulated and warm sanctuary created by the recent fall of leaves. They are pictured in various wildlife journals all cute, curled up and comfortable.

West of Scotland: little hedgehogs and other small mammals form an orderly queue at the local housing offices, citing the damp, cold and drab conditions they are expected to live in. They are pictured in various daily newspapers brandishing placards and threatening legal action.

FireworksNew England: having served notices of eviction to the adorable little mammalian tenants, happy and excited families from the street gather round the residual piles on Bonfire Night. A match is placed under the leaves. They ignite almost instantly, spreading a cozy glow across the garden that warms the feet of those attending the fireworks display, and now busy toasting marshmallows in the fire’s periphery.

Bonfire smokeWest of Scotland: a boxful of spent matches lie strewn on the ground beside the slimy, wet pile of leaves. That brow-beaten, middle-aged man again loses the the coin toss / argument / will to live, and is supervised by his impatient, irksome neighbour as he siphons a litre of petrol from his car into an empty bottle. Having splashed this over the sodden leaves, he flicks the flame of a disposable lighter onto the musty mound. It ignites. Eventually. But there is no immediate, spreading warmth.

There is smoke. Lots of smoke. It brings tears to the eyes of those trying to quickly retrieve their still cold potatoes from the base of the supposed fire, before the litre of ‘unleaded’ permeates the skin.

The  kids from the street have lost interest and are now indoors playing Xbox. The wives are now in the kitchen and on their third bottle of red. One of the husbands has gone home to check on the dog. Another excuses himself on the feeble excuse of having office work he should be doing.

The brow-beaten husband waits with the irksome neighbour for the smoking stack to extinguish. There is silence in the garden. A heavy, damp silence.

 

And the winner is …………

Damp Dogs & Rabbit Wee

Reblogged from velcrodog.co.uk

Velcro Dog

Today’s post has been written by author Cee Tee Jackson, who has kindly shared the story behind his book, perfect for dog lovers. Enjoy!

Being made redundant any time is unfortunate; life changing. Twice in two years, though? Why, that’s just plain careless, and points to poor decision making, particularly as regards the latter job. I know. It happened to me. And as an ex-Bank manager seeking employment as the financial sector crashed, a prolonged period on Jobseeker Allowance followed.

Eventually though, almost as much through desperation as my love for animals, I started my own petcare / dog walking business. That was over eight years ago and illustrates perfectly that some things are just meant to be. I love my job.

Marley - Damp Dog 800

My days are spent principally outdoors and encompass moments of laughter; concern; confusion; emergency, smells and mess. I experience situations that educate, plus some that warm my heart, while others…

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