A selection of work written over the last couple of years.



Posted on April 1, 2012 at 9:45 AM

This was actually written on a bad day last year but I'm procrastinating from writing an article and I enjoyed re-reading this today. (on a good day)

ON A BAD DAY    (I have good days too).

I wonder why I thought anopen fire was so appealing.    Shovellingcoal from a coal bunker my wrists feel like they are having a disco, thumping,pounding.   Hauling the 20 kilo plasticbag of Hotmax  across the gravel seemslike dragging a grizzly bear.   Anynotion of flinging it (Hotmax, not grizzly bear) up to my shoulder is longgone.   Improvisation comes into play,with scissors and the log basket.   Twohandles sure as hell help, when your fingers are swollen and you just can’tgrip anything with confidence.  Half abag becomes easier to handle.  Don’t careif it looks bad, I put it just behind the door in the hallway.   If it stays outside and gets wet, the“Hotmax” disintegrates to something similar to stodgy porridge.   Logs would be good, but the logger just tipsthe trailer and drives off.  Stackingisn’t a problem but splitting them is, on a bad day.  A husband seems like a good idea but I’ve hadtwo of them and still ended up splitting the logs.  

The fire heats the waterfrom a back boiler.   I could use theimmersion heater but then my bills would spiral.   I could also flick the switch and turn onthe electric radiator but again, it’s too expensive to think about and I hatethe dry heat that comes with electricity. 

I had planned on swimmingthis morning before starting work this afternoon, but know how painful thatwould turn out to be with every stroke.  So I’ve swallowed some anti-inflammatory pills and heated the lavenderbag to wrap round the area of most pain.  

At least I can still type onthe laptop; my wrists can rest on the front facing.  

The wind is rising, whiskingthe fir trees and silver birch that rumba outside my window as tiny birds clingto the fat balls .   The current littlefella looks so cute, delicate claws, yellow breast and that sinister black maskacross his eyes.

I’ll tie my hair back,because even brushing hair becomes an ordeal on a bad day.   My right ear itches yet it’s easier toscratch using my left hand.   Evenfastening my trousers hurts like hell.  Anything that involves slight pressure becomes a challenge.  Today’s battles have included the insideplastic ring pull on the olive oil and the top of the milk bottle.   Trying to avoid polka dotted clothes becomesan art.   Assume the position of a bearhug and pull gently.  There! I’ve won!

This afternoon I’ll pick upthe van that serves as a mobile post office, drive it to its destination andstruggle with the rear doors before climbing out and lowering the rear tailgateby hand.

I’ll turn and face thepublic with a smile and ask them how they are as I listen to their comments onthe weather and their aches and pains. Strange, but the ones who wear pain, rarely complain; their couragewarms my heart.

Once they’ve all gone I haulup the tailgate, defying the hot irons shooting up my arms.   Working day over.   Tomorrow will be better.




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