Slowly does it

I’m still buzzing. I’ve forgotten how to slow down and not wake up in the morning with a ‘must do’ list already in place. The moving deadline that was egging us on last month is gone, and we are mostly settled, at least for the time being, with far less of a rush to sort out the remaining things. So there’s no need for me to be, in most areas of my life, demanding more (Why haven’t you gone to a poetry reading yet? Why haven’t you made an appointment with the bank? Go out! Join a gym! Move move move! ) But I can’t seem to stop doing it just yet.

Part of me is still treating this like a holiday that’ll be over soon and that I need to cram as much into as possible. Another part of me is on a New Year high – because for me, 2015 didn’t feel as though it started until I got on that train out of London, and I haven’t crashed and given up on my shaky resolutions yet. I am exhausted, though. I’d forgotten the sheer amount of energy involved in settling into a new place (by which I mean town, let alone job).

I jumped head first into the new job, starting at their busiest possible time so there was no chance to panic about fitting in and being able to do the work – I was too busy actually getting on with said work. Best way to start out, I think. Now things are quieter, so I can get going on the extra projects and, oooh, panic a bit. Impostor Syndrome. Mac-hating (why, WHY is Excel on Mac so crap compared to on PC? There’s a wealth of stuff that it just doesn’t do). That sort of thing. All inevitable – I had days like that in my old job as well. The past years of tri, writing and my day job have taught me nothing if not that doubt in your own ability is an annoying game of whack-a-mole that never really stops. I’m lucky enough, also, to be working with very lovely people again.

So, breathe, smell the roses, make the most of it, all those things.

...stop fighting the current; go with the flow; let the river of life run slow for a while and so on and so on... [note - this is actually the river we live by]

…stop fighting the current; go with the flow; let the river of life run slow for a while and so on and so on… [note – this is actually the river we live by]

In one more week, things will be settled enough that the other other things I want to organise can get underway. Driving lessons, for instance. Yep. The time has come. There is no congested transport system to rely on round here, and I can’t whine about scary crowded roads anymore either. As soon as I can find my various license bits, I will be embarking on driving lesson attempt number… five? I think?

Just the thought of booking them is already bringing on stress dreams (not kidding: last night the theory test examiner sat me at a table with a banana, a piece of card and a tennis ball on it, and demonstrated how to catapult the tennis ball across the room using the momentum of the banana to flip the card, without either of those objects leaving the table surface. Then I had to do it. To my delight the tennis ball actually shot across the room but, ‘it was 30 degrees out’ said the examiner, ‘and that would be dangerous on the road’. And so I failed. Er, what?)

My actual road practice at the moment is all cycling. Yep, I’m cycling to and from the station, and also getting out at the weekend. And walking a lot. And I’ve found a swimming pool right by work. Once I’ve got ready access to my running and swimming gear (there’s still a level of camping out involved in how we’re living at the moment; lots of trundling back and forth to the in-laws as we wait for our mattress to show up) I’ll be doing those things as well. We’re on the outskirts of town, which means I can’t avoid at least five miles of exercise a day on my commute. It also means we’re about ten minutes from fields, hills, the river and beautiful walks into the countryside. Which is partly why this feels like a holiday. I hadn’t done any proper exercise in months. It feels good to be active again.

Which is lucky, because I got a ballot place in the Great North Run! Very exciting. As it’s a ballot place, I’m not obliged to raise money for charity, but given the past 12 months, and since it’s been a while since I came a-begging, I spoke to my parents and agreed a cause with them. This is a very niche one – really, only Manxies may give a damn – so I’m not expecting to raise a huge amount. But as always, a couple of pounds is always welcome if you can spare it: take a look at my Justgiving page for Hyperbaric Chamber Isle of Man (click here).

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