Back To Work, sort of

Once again, I’ve neglected to write anything for some time – meaning I’m in danger of writing another lengthy boring blow-by-blow – rather than one of the rants I’ve got simmering.

But – I’ll try to keep it short.

Got back to London on the Sunday, and back to work on Monday.  Struggled to deal with the crazy fact that it is a different time here than in NZ – and turned up to work early every day that week.  But then I had a weekend of work to do.  And belatedly invited to a barbecue at Caro’n’Dom’s place.  Annoyed everbody by turning up with my laptop and spending most of my time doing work.  But – got myself so tired one way or the other that I was back to normal sleeping habits.  ie: late to work on Monday.  And with a noticable limp.

Next day – didn’t turn up at all.  My feet had turned all nasty.  Too painful to put shoes on, so I worked from home for the week.  Stayed home all weekend.  Finally went to the doctor the next Monday – and the nice lady had one look, and called for help.  The doctor had a look, diagnosed a bacterial infection, and quizzed me on whether I’d been to any tropical countries recently.  I’ve just checked – and Brisbane isn’t tropical, though it’s pretty close.  The doctor got pretty excited when I mentioned India, but admitted it was too long ago to be responsible.  Anyway – I blame Arsetralia. But – the doctor prescribed some antibiotics (an extremely heavy course, as somebody later pointed out) – and sent me down to a nurse to clean/bandage up my feet.  Or to just get the disgusting things out of his sight, probably.  The nurse did a lovely job, and I got myself a taxi to my local pub – so that I could eat a decent meal for the first time in quite some time.  And drink a beer.  Then – pick up my drugs on the way home, and spent the rest of the week working from home with my feet up – as told to by a medical professional.  Antibiotics worked wonders – and I went back in for a re-bandaging on Wednesday, and then self-diagnosed myself as cured, and didn’t show up to further appointments like I was supposed to.  I did, however, complete the course of antibiotics right through to the end, which I think is a first for me.

So – back to work the next week, albeit with sneakers on – tied very loosely, as I still couldn’t put on proper shiny pointy shoes.  Nobody seemed to mind too much, and I think it was helpful in showing people I hadn’t just been lazing around for the sake of it.

Ben turned up at some point also.  And some drunk was got on.  There has been walking through pouring rain, going into nice expensive restaurants dripping wet (me in suit, Ben in shorts/jandals), drinking champagne.  And then as we try to leave, the slovakian waitress asks if I’m leaving.  “Oh, really?  You’re really leaving?  You’re not going to have just one or two more drinks?  Oh.  That’s a shame.”  Ben walks up and asks me “What just happened?”  I couldn’t answer immediately.  I think, for the first time, I can use the word flabbergasted.  We just looked at each other, and then admitted “Ohhh… she’s good.”  Then I think I called her a nasty word (out of earshot) – and we went and asked to be seated, so that we may have some more drinks.  And therefore more champagne was drunk.

I think that was a Thursday.  On the Friday – I had lots of work to do.  But – there is a bar right next to my building.  So – 3 Osbornes & a Chook came to this bar, and we sat and drank and chatted for a while, with me popping back into the office every once in a while.  Caitlin headed off to wear glowsticks and ‘rave’ it up.  Ben, John, Chook & I stayed around, continued drinking – went to another bar, bought some champagne.  And then – back to Chooks, to continue with this theme.  1 billion beers, bottle of champagne, and a couple of bottles of cidar as back-up.

Saturday – barbecue at Caitlin’s.  Long time since I spent time around lots and lots of 23-year olds.  But – I was working, so had an excuse to not drink much.  Ben & I did, however, buy quite a lot of champagne.  And some food.  Anyway – spend the next 24 hours or so alternately drinking champagne, sneaking old-man naps, and working.  Finally got home on Sunday night – realising I was still wearing the same clothes I’d put on Friday morning.

And then – another week of work.  This time, I could put on my shiny pointy shoes – and look all professional, and what-not.  Except for the unkempt tired facet.  And what a week of work it was.  Absolutely nothing went right.  The first couple of days were spent doing things which I later found out were completely useless, and had to be redone.  And then somebody goes and tells somebody fairly high up that something is going to take 2 hours.  Now – I know I’m going to be the person doing this thing, and that it is certainly not going to take 2 hours.  More like 10.  So – 2 hours later, people start asking me about the progress.  And, of course, blaming me for the fact that it’s taking much much longer than they were told.  Not important – except several high-level managers had been actually told that their jobs depended on this.  When I think about it, I could have done it wrong on purpose, and emptied the company of about 3 or 4 managers.  Doing the company a favour, really.

But – enough of work.  Also had a couple of quiet drinks on Wednesday night with a few people.  Ben was also there, but he wasn’t doing quiet drinks.  He already had his big grin on when I arrived.  Got forced into staying around for dinner too.  Thursday night – drinks with my project manager/boss and workmate.  Got talking champagne.  And once one starts talking about champagne, one knows it’s only a matter of time until actions speak louder than words.  Also – boss was trying to get me to go along to U2 with him the following night.  No deal.

And now it’s Saturday.  And maybe a barbecue at Chooks.  Hopefully – only a barbecue.  None of this binge-drinking nonsense.  I am really hoping for a relaxing weekend.  And then – off to India on Monday.  Yep – back to India.  I’m scheduled to go there for four weeks this time.  Which might be just a little bit too long for me to cope with.  But – I was given the option of coming back to London for an extended weekend halfway through.  So – I’ve taken them up on that offer – except flying to Paris instead of London.  Will meet Ben in Paris, and then probably drive to Champagne.  And then fly back to India – nice and refreshed, of course.

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