I could have been lounging poolside, my eyeballs floating in cheap gin and maybe writing a little bit. As it is though, I’m in Chorley instead. Not comparable in any way as far as I can see, except maybe the temperature. The heating here is cranked all the way up to eleven and my skin is drying out after only a few days. And while I think I’d get away with slathering myself with cream at poolside, here, it will cause many a head to twitch up and down in bemusement in the meerkat world of the cubicle farm.
I’m closer to a window than I was in my previous job. There, I remember the fire officer once pointed to a pile of paper stacked on a desk near the window. She insisted it had to be dealt with because it posed a fire risk. I pointed out that if it were to ever spontaneously combust, then the rain pouring down the inside of the window would likely quench the flames.
The window here opens to about 5 mm, which in the summer I imagine will be perfect for midges to slip in and bite everyone – or more likely, just me. They love me, and although I appreciate their affectionate attitude towards me, it’s a one-sided love that will never be returned. I wonder if the Cypriot midges would have survived my gin quenched blood. Well I’m not likely to find out this year.
Every hour or-so a train goes past about 75 feet away and almost at eye level with me on the first floor. Even on a despondently weathered day like today, the faces of the passengers – artistically disguised behind the grit and grime streaked across the train windows – appear to be less gloomy than I am in my greenhouse of isolation.
I could have been in Paphos, up to my eyeballs in cheap gin, up to my knees in a swimming pool and perhaps up to no good. But I’m in Chorley. I’ve thought about this many times throughout the day. Only once did I think I’d made the right choice and it was five minutes to five. Then again, it did rain all the way home … maybe next year. Save some gin for me Liz