First Gear

That waterlogged sign marking my first blog post has been haunting me lately. Oh, there are many excuses, mainly related to “nothing much to write about”. But this is a journey, and one has to get out of neutral and engage first gear to get anywhere. In fact, the better analogy is to get off the couch in the nice warm living room, put on some sturdy walking boots and take the first few tentative steps outside the front door. Into the cold, lonely, frightening. Unknown.

There! One paragraph down, and we’re flying now. Ok, maybe not, but we’re mobile.

Which reminds me of an old dream. To walk the Camino de Santiago. It’s good to nail the colours to the mast. Now it’s out there. It’s got to be done. Sometime soon. Well, not this year, that’s already spoken for. Next year I’m reaching a milestone birthday. Then it’s got to happen. It won’t be the whole route, not even half. It will be first gear all over again, slipping away from work for a week or two.

There’s a new sleeping partner. Not my wife.  Nevertheless, a legitimate one. It’s a shiny CPAP machine courtesy of the National Health Service, parked on my bedside table. Sleep apnoea has ruined my rest for more than a decade, so this has to be seen as a blessing. And so it is. Funny how something so restrictive, uncomfortable, suffocating even, can also be so liberating at the same time.

This is how I see it. There’s much to accomplish, a new year ahead. Challenges. Making new year’s resolutions is not what this is about. I’m not making any. This is just announcing my participation. I don’t know what 2013 brings, but I’ll be there at the end, God willing.

Are you with me?

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Aantree!

Ek het doelbewus die nabetragting oor 2012 gesystap. Daar was nie tyd vir nostalgie en sielswroeging nie. Terwyl (sommige / die meeste?) Suiderlinge in die son gel^e het is hier gewoeker. My nuwe assistent is terug Spanje toe vir Kersfees en hier moes die fort gehou word. Gelukkig darem Kersdag en 2de Kersdag tyd gespandeer saam met die gesin.

Hier rondom Kersfees is dinge nie altyd maklik in ons beroep nie. Eerstens vat ander mense vakansie en ons moet werk. Jy s^e ek kla met die brood onder die arm en jy’s reg. Ander mense moet ook werk. Winkels is ongelooflik (ongoddelik?) besig. Nooddienste word oorweldig. En tog. Ek wens partykeer ons kan die tydperk tussen 15 Desember en 15 Januarie uitsny en voortgaan asof dit nie bestaan nie.

Vir troeteldiere is die feesseisoen gereeld onprettig. Vreemde mense kom werp die roetine omver. Vreemde diere kom versteur die status quo. Ongewone voorwerpe, insluitende kersversierings en snaakse kossoorte. Humeure vlam op. Mage werk. En dan is daar “The Christmas Clearout.” Ek wil nou nie in detail hierop ingaan nie. Net om te s^e dat dit ‘n hartseer tyd is vir ons wat dit moet hanteer.

Gelukkig is ons darem nou anderkant uit. En is daar ‘n skoon bladsy om weer te begin.

En nee, vanjaar kry jy ook g’n niks geen nuwejaarsvoornemens uit my uit nie.

Niks.

Nada!