Down time

Or, maybe, “down” time, for down-time is was not.

It’s been a three-day weekend in this country and I’m just about to go back to work. It’s also the kids’ school half-term holiday, so they’re not going back until next week. This means, of course, that we can spend the whole day on Sunday at the National Space Centre, with a late night; the whole day on Monday doing the quintessentially English activity that is going to the seaside in the rain and another late night, and still have all of the children running around the house making noise before 7am. If they were going to school today, they’d be asleep until two minutes before it was time to leave, but no. Not today. Today is a holiday day, and there is chaos to create.

In the meantime, Child 2 has discovered that actually doing practise helps him to play things on the piano that he couldn’t play before, so we’ve been serenaded by Ed Sheeran every morning and every evening for the last fortnight. That said, he’s now much better at playing Photograph than he was, and it’s getting him to do his practise, so we’re looking upon it as a good thing.

Child 1 is counting down the days until he can leave Scouts, which I am finding quite difficult — not least because I became a Scout leader so that he could join the movement — but that’s the way it goes sometimes. You can lead a child to fun adventures and things they wouldn’t get the opportunity to do elsewhere, but you can’t make them enjoy it. I didn’t have any time for Scouting when I was his age and I have grown to regret not staying on board when I had the chance. Oh, youth. Of course, it may be that he’s just not interested in the stuff we get up to and  I have to be man enough to admit that.

The youngest is as energetic as ever, and seems to be enthusiastic about more-or-less everything. This is a good thing, I suppose, but it is exhausting. He’s going fishing with the Beavers next week: another new thing. Maybe one day, he’ll settle down a bit, but there’s plenty of time as yet, and he seems to be making the most of every second.

For myself, I took advantage of Mental Health Awareness Week to let my employer know that my brain does funny things from time to time and that, when it looks like I’m sitting at my desk trying not to cry, that’s probably because that is exactly what is happening. I shouldn’t be surprised, but they were very good about it and have offered all the help they can, including taking a day or two off sick if I need it from time to time. I think I landed on my feet with these people, after the last lot pushed me out (which was a blessing in disguise on many levels).

But on the subject of work, I’d best get into the office and earn today’s crust.

See you next week.

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