The Meerkat Muse – 26th July 2023

Friends, meerkats, all of you, lend me your ears, it’s Meerkat Muse time!

Work it… Work it Real Good

No, I am not shaking my booty or gyrating my ass, or thrusting my hips. I am quite literally referring to work. Circumstances have been quite tough of late, due to a colleague being off long-term sick, and with another colleague being on holiday, this has meant long hours. I’ve sacrificed a day or two off to help out, and faced the awkward scenario of being stuck at work on my own. Needless to say, this has left me feeling quite tired. On the other hand, in terms of raw sales, I’m having a good month, and so in that sense, I cannot complain. Still, volunteering to do home measures on a day off is going a bit beyond the call of duty! I can only hold myself to account on that one, but if it leads to extra sales, and therefore extra money, great.

A Continent of Contrasts

Travel to Greece, Italy, Spain, or Turkey right now, and you’ll experience some of the most intense heatwaves to sweep across Europe. Temperatures have been pushing 50C, which is unbearably hot, and such extreme heat has killed people. The UK has been largely protected (through sheer dumb luck), and instead, July has proven to be something of a washout, with lots of cloud, and the strong threat of rain. Even then, it hasn’t been cold, with temperatures hitting the mid-twenties.

There are those who passionately deny climate change, yet the ferociously hot weather in Europe (and north America too) is a further demonstration that global weather conditions are changing, and it’s not realistic to deny human involvement in that change. The mercury is rising, and extreme weather patterns are developing. This is not just a summer problem, because the changing climate also brings increasingly-powerful hurricanes, and unpredictable winter conditions. We cannot bury our heads in the sand on this.

Writing Hard

My progress with The Awakening’s sequel is continuing quite nicely, and I’ve managed to push myself to over 45,000 words. I have a clearer picture of where to take proceedings, and I am feeling quite good about my efforts. Alongside this, I have another project that’s nearly at 30,000 words, and I am already considering whether to direct this to a publisher, or whether to return to the self-publish route. My thought process is torn; a publisher – especially my publisher – can add a lot of spit and polish to this. On the other hand, having direct control over this particular project might be interesting.

Under the Weather

The inconsistencies in English conditions are probably half the reason for a ropey spell, where I had a bit of the sniffles. The other half of this equation lies in how hectic work has been. Obviously lots of sales equals more money, but by the same token, having no time to take stock can lead to a bit of burnout, and I believe that’s how I wound up feeling. If we’d had consistent, 25-30C heat, that might have been enough to burn out of my system whatever it was that ailed me. Alas, that’s not how things played out. It is faintly absurd to end up with a cold in July, but that’s British weather for you. If it were normal, we’d have nothing to make small talk over!

Dreams of Dread

The other night, I had a dream where my wife, daughter and I were at a hotel in London. I don’t know why we were in a hotel, but we were watching out the window as missiles began to rain down upon the city. Rockets intercepted a lot of the incoming fire, but some began to get through, and London began to burn. I instinctively knew the missiles were Russian, and I figured this was the beginning of the end. None of the missiles were nukes, but nonetheless, the dream was quite a scary one.

My hope is that I haven’t somehow had any kind of prophetic dream (I don’t think I’m especially given to have those!), but the possibility of all-out war, especially given the on-going situation in Ukraine, cannot be ruled out. I sincerely hope that never comes to pass.

Dreams of Old

I’ve had a few dreams that harken back to my school days. In the dreams, there were events and gatherings, complete with lots of old faces. I’ve had a couple about old friends, and some of the dreams were more generic, featuring an ensemble cast, so to speak. One dream didn’t even relate to school, but to a former colleague from my office supply retail days.

Why these dreams, and why now? I don’t know. I do miss some of the people in these dreams, but I’ve not been thinking of them, nor of school. I have no idea what the trigger is for these dreams, and I gave up trying to find patterns in my subconscious a long time ago.

Taking Time Off

At the point of publishing this, I am on a week-long break from work, though we haven’t actually gone anywhere. I had days to book off, or I’d lose them, so I scooped up a week at the end of July, to do absolutely nothing. It’s a pity the weather hasn’t provided glorious, warm sunshine, but beggars can’t be choosers, and at least I’m not having to set the alarm for 6.30am.

Beyond all of that, I can’t really report a great deal for the past two weeks. What will August bring? Until then, I bid you all adieu 🙂

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