26.12.14 (Day three six eight)
Christmas Eve Eve – the twenty third – marked the anniversary of me being put out on the road. I’ve written this post as I’ve dipped in and out of writing over a few days.
One year. One whole fucking year of being out here. Out on the road. I didn’t celebrate.
365 days, 365 ways of surviving and 365 degrees of separation.
I’m not celebrating. Why would I? I’m not going to do a review of the year just passed. For that, I simply have to look at myself.
I’ve aged well. I’ve grown up but I’ve got younger in spirit and outlook. I’m definitely tougher; hardened. Less and more emotional at the same time. Less and more reflective and inflective. I’ve learned and I’ve taught. I’ve beaten and been beaten. It’s all recorded in this blog.
Those who’ve stuck by me are still with me; still stuck: my hosts, my best friends, my sister (The Courts) and the one I call The Wife. I saw her yesterday and was cheered by the mere sight of her looking as well as she did, for I feared for her. We’re still together: friends with benefits. Living our own lives by degrees of separation imposed upon us but still sharing a life whenever we can steal a moment.
That was three days ago. Now she’s lost again. How things change so quickly. I seem to have lost her to another. Such is the way with kids. I’ll be here for her as always when things fall apart and I pick up the pieces.
And another lost one who I wish I could be there for more: a fellow blogger who recently said this of me:
“I was told, not so long ago, to keep my head up because i can swim as long as i carry on moving my legs. It’s the only piece of advise i know. Spoken by a friend of mine, that man from McDonald’s. Only a small few will know who the man from McDonald’s is or understand what i mean because that’s how most met him.”
Little Blue II is broken. The keyboard gave up first, then I managed to drop what was left: the tablet part. The droid still works but it’s cracked somewhat. It was simply a matter of wrong place, wrong time but somewhere I was forced to be. Sometimes, wherever I am seems to be wrong. Out of the way but not out of mind. Visible but in the way. I can’t win. I’m in an impossible place sometimes. Displaced and misplaced.
That was two days ago. Now calm is restored. Temporarily at least but sometimes permanence is borne of repetition and this is somewhere I’ve been before. I’ll find myself there again.
The keyboard of Little Blue is working again, to a fashion. The letters work but the numbers don’t and neither do some of the shift functions. Hence this being day three six eight and not written numerically and the whole post not being as well decorated with punctuation as is the norm, apart from the part which I wrote at the top when the keyboard still worked. So I still need a new keyboard unless this one continues to improve and I certainly need to get the cracked screen replaced. I just need to find the money.
I have money due as the church I cooked the last community lunch for have insisted on paying me, despite my protestations. I was at a church yesterday as well, giving Christmas lunch to the homeless, elderly and other lost and lonely souls who are especially vulnerable at this time of year. The mood I’ve been in lately, it was fortunate there was no public transport yesterday as I was in the mood to play with the trains.
I received generous, practical and thoughtful gifts and gave what I could with limited means. I may not have much money but I spent what I could spare on gifts for the host family and am fashioning gifts for my other family, which are works in progress. I do have time though and I invested a fair deal of time on a personal gift for my best friend Meg in the form of a personal website at http://www.iammeg.net. I’ve also made her a blog.
Of course the best Christmas gift of all would have been seeing my kids but this is a pleasure which continues to be denied me. The next best thing came in the form of a framed set of photos, one each of my two kids and a third of the two of them together. That was from one of my other best friends, Nettie, the host mum.
Two days until P-day. That’s publication of the first in the Paradox series of short stories, The Paradox of Shadows in Schlock e-zine. The second installment – The Paradox of Reflection – is due to appear in the next issue a fortnight hence. Both should then appear in the printed magazine. The third installment – The Paradox of Time – is yet to be submitted to the editor. And as mentioned before, on the advice of several writing peers, the whole lot are to form the basis of a novel, which is a very large work in progress. I’m probably looking at two to three years of work.
So I’m writing and I’m cooking; engaging in two passions but not getting paid yet for either. I shan’t give up.
The title of this post is also that of a song by a punk band I used to follow back in the day: Crass. The closing line of that particular song goes “And if you’re eating your Christmas turkey, I hope it fucking chokes you”. There are few people I’d wish that on, although they do exist but I do find the whole Christmas charade crass. It’s all about the kids but I’m unable to see mine.
It could be worse. This time last year I was in hospital and Christmas lunch was a turkey sandwich.