It’s so odd. Easter Weekend and normally London would be so busy. Those weekends where eight friends are having a party and another eight are in a show and I’d spread myself like marmite and try to go to everything all at once and drink a bottle and a half of wine in the process and wake up suddenly in the morning wondering how I got home.

Now the phone barely buzzes and if it does it’s seventy five percent likely to be one of the WhatsApp groups coming off 7 day mute again. I check the recent messages, find a hundred smiley faces for every three words, mute it again and go back to missing being sociable.

I need to get fit. That’s the next thing. I need to actually do that thing people do where they go into the world in order to become more healthy. In the past there’s always been that lucky job that has kept me fit by mistake. Maybe a director has had a two hour warm-up every morning, or maybe I’ve been sprinting around London with a Walkie talkie trying to pretend to be calm while Americans ask me to do things, or maybe I’ve been walking ten miles on the floor of a great big tent at Ascot making sure that table eight have had the plates cleared, or maybe I’ve had to play five parts in a Shakespeare play at 1886 metres altitude or in blazing sunshine or some-such. Accidental fitness has been my jam. Not anymore. I’m gonna have to seek it out.

The pets are no good influence. Mao sleeps whenever possible. Hex is never happier than when he’s under his rock. Maureen and Sadie and Brian and most of the other fish just hang out under various rocks. Only one of them really represents for Team Nervous Energy. Chippie is ADHD.

And the snails… The snails have magic powers.

“I’ve got two snails,” he said. “They’re supposed to clean the tank but they don’t.”

When I set up the tank, there were no snails. I changed the water completely. We acclimatised the fish. No snails. About a week later, one snail. But it kept moving faster than it’s possible for a snail to move. I’d look away for five minutes, I’d look back and it would be the other side of the tank. But I’d never see it moving. It was like a weeping angel – (Doctor Who reference alert). Then I realised there were somehow two of them, and they had arranged it with each other that one of them was always hiding. Sneaky bastards. They still do that. But then this morning they magicked a third empty snail shell, and they both hid. I thought one of them had died. I tried to coax the empty shell back to life. I’d put it on a nice flat surface, and come back to find Chippie trying to eat it again. Then suddenly, five minutes ago, two snails again, plus this new empty shell that might suddenly turn into a third snail. And a fourth. And a fifth. Until my flat is overrun by snails.

This is what happens to your mind when you don’t work out, kids.

Best think about ways to get fit but I just hate on-purpose fitness. Anybody need someone to carry boxes?

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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