Slowly going bonkers

Don’t listen to the news.

Just don’t.

I’ve been driving to Brighton. People try and say things on the radio like they’re good news. “It might be possible for vaccinated people to travel to either Portugal or Cyprus after May 17th,” somebody says in their best happy voice. I almost have to stop the car in a layby in order to strip naked and set fire to everything. Instead I just howl at the road on front of me like a wounded manatee.

I do not want to divide my life into two sections. Into “Before the fall” and “after Covid”. I don’t want to sit in a circle of old people in thirty years and say “when we were your age, we could go anywhere we could afford to go. I remember sometimes I’d just get on a plane and go somewhere. We never knew it would change so quickly. If only we’d known.” I don’t want to say that to a young person who I can tell doesn’t even believe me because all they’ve known is ever decreasing circles.

I hate everything about this. And I’ve just driven to Brighton so I’m covering more ground here than most. Lou is my mental support bubble and I have to be able to say that in case plod tries to slap a fine on me. It’s been happening at Borough Market. Somebody walked there from Battersea, which is a pleasant walk on a sunny day. I had a similar one a few weeks ago. They were told they had strayed too far by the police, and were issued with a fine. That’s crazy.

Despite the Audi and the freedom it gives I still feel trapped, and I can’t see the end of it. I have a hunger to see the world. To experience as much as I can in his short story I’m creating, before my bits stop working. Right now I can still hike up a mountain. I wanna do it. Himalayas or even Kilmanjari – anything but Everest although even that – the Macdonalds of Mountains – might be a bit less of a tourist trap right now. I could join the legion of idiots throwing tissues and farting in a queue so they can go home and make out like they’re Edmund Hilleary. Get me out there. “I went up Everest and all I got is this stupid T-Shirt”. I want to see and feel and know all the things damn it all. And yes I also have my calling, and it’s always been a balance between the two energies. The need to be available for the nebulous job that could crop up at any moment is constantly at odds with the need to get up and see all the things, and both of them are balanced by the fact that money doesn’t grow on trees so I have to be resourceful within my choices. But … the world is shut. The whole fucking world is shut. I need a lear jet. Or an ocean going yacht. I need to cover some ground. But no matter how many times I buy that lottery ticket it doesn’t seem to come in. So I continue to be surrounded at home by antiques because I haven’t the financial space to say “oh just take the lot for a fiver. And while you’re at it, drop me a quote for a full redecorating job. I’ll be taking the yacht to Corsica with the puppy.” I like the antiques but they wouldn’t be there if I didn’t have to hustle for cash. And they’ve done me well over the last few months, thankfully.

Bring it back. Ugh. Has it really been less than a year? I’m done with it.

At least I’m by it seaside again. And somewhere, I guess I should remember that I chose this existence.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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