The capacity for rage

Sunday October 22, 2006

In spite of our long, still to be broken spell of above average temperatures, there is now a distinct chill to the rain drops. I was caught in a sudden rain squall when walking to the car from the supermarket this morning. My normal reaction is to shrug and tell myself it’s only water. Today, though, it was cold water. I scurried across quick as I could, shoved my bags in the boot, disposed of the trolley and dashed back to get in the car quick as I could, heaving a sigh of relief.

Time to start swapping summer clothes for my winter wardrobe, I think. ‘Above average’ is a relative term only and I have to face up to the fact that it’s too chilly now for shirtsleeves and bare head.

I shall take the opportunity for a last de-clutter of clothes I’m unlikely ever to wear again. I thought I’d done a pretty good job in this area before we moved away from Lincolnshire but today I opened a drawer to discover a stack of old sweatshirts that no longer fit. My weight and girth are pretty much static now but I very much doubt I shall ever get smaller.

There are to be another few visits to the clothing bank in my immediate future. Soon as the Prozac kicks in fully I shall make it my task for the rest of this month.

Meantime I’m wobbling on an uncertain spindle of mood shifts. I swing between brief attacks of energy and long periods of tiredness. Hey ho. I jump up and get stuff done in the former and collapse as gracefully as I may when hit by the latter. I’ll be properly adjusted to the medication in two or three days.

Graham’s dental problem has settled down now and that’s just as well because he’s obliged by lack of staff to work ridiculously long hours at the holiday camp this week. I shall be driving over very late tomorrow to pick him up at the end of his shift so’s he can attend at the surgery on Tuesday morning, when the stitches are be removed and a final inspection carried out. Then he’ll have to go back to pick up the reins until Sunday or Monday. I’m expecting him to be exhausted at the end of it.

The problem is written in to the way the holiday business is run. A tiny core of ‘permanent’ staff is augmented during the busy periods by casual labour, taken from the pool of local students and other seasonal workers. It used to be a good system but the students are back at their studies now, and the seasonal workers have followed general economic trends to seek and obtain proper, regular work. Opening the holiday camp for the autumn half-term and a Halloween visitation from the line-dancers may seem a good idea, and it is, on the face of it. It puts an intolerable burden on the permanent staff however and, plainly, the thinking needs to be changed. One thing I remember from my executive days is that if you consistently over-load your core staff they are liable to vote with their feet. Loyalty is a commodity that needs carefully to be conserved.

I am studiously avoiding the news at the moment. When I walk over to the local shop of a morning I leave the newspaper on the stand and pick up croissants or brioche instead. Given my present unstable condition, and especially the heavy reluctance I experience when I face the breakfast pan, I’m best advised to dunk my pastries in milky coffee and to think of better times than to seek uplifting news in the pageant of tragedy and mismanagement I find in the world about me. It’s uplifting news that I need; I don’t have the capacity for rage in me just now.



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