Not for nothing have I renamed my blog But I Digress… I am good at digressing. I am also an expert procrastinator, especially on Monday mornings.
For the last two days I have been deliberately computer-free. I've used my phone and iPad to access social media and for fun only. Using technology for good not evil, as I put it. The only bad thing about this is that it has given me a taste of freedom, the opportunity to truly switch off and forget about work for the weekend.
So how did I spent my weekend? I didn't do anything most folk would consider exciting. First thing Saturday we headed to Orange Grove Markets for some good fruit, veg and pasta (well, that's mildly exciting, I love OG Markets). I weeded dandelions from the lawn both days, taking my weeding hours in the last seven days up to six. I mowed some of the lawn - will have to pick up some chunks of umbrella tree trunk before I can do the rest. G and I poisoned the remaining umbrella tree root in a very satisfying exercise. G and I took the dog for a good brisk walk on Sunday before breakfast. I hoovered the house. I scrubbed the bathroom. I did a few loads of washing. I read a book. G and I hung and rehung some pictures. I took down the venetian blinds in the living room as the cords had broken on two of them and anyway they were cheap things from Freedom Furniture 20-something years old. I polished some furniture. We rearranged some of the bedroom furniture. We both did some ironing as it had piled up. Are you seeing a picture here? Apart from reading a book, it was a pretty physical weekend.
After weekends like this I find it hard to tie myself down to a computer on a Monday morning. So all this morning I have been procrastinating, playing for time before sitting at The Screen of Doom. G leaves for work at 7.30am. At that point I put on washing; I have some blankets to wash which I am giving away on Freecycle. I did the washing up and cleaned the kitchen benches. I hung the first load of washing out and put another blankety lot on. That's also hanging out now, together with load number three, white stuff. I mopped the kitchen, bathroom, loo and laundry. I brought the bins in. I watered the lawn where I'd put lawn seed down the week before, and the little garden near our front door.
Yes, it's sad: I far more enjoy housewifely tasks than work tasks. I would rather scrub the floors than build a website. With the changes I've had in my life over these last few months I would rather clean the toilet with my own toothbrush than build websites and put up with clients.
G has been away quite a lot in the last couple of months, so I have ironed several shirts for him. He usually irons his own shirts (quite the enlightened bloke in some ways). In our marathon ironing session yesterday he mentioned that and thanked me for it, whereby I answered it was the least I could do and anyway, that's what I do. His reply: "I didn't marry a 'wifey'." Now 'wifey' I am not and we both know it. But is there a difference between a 'wifey' and a woman who enjoys the physical side of housework and treats it as exercise? Plus, I get a lot of gratification from cleaning things and seeing the result.
I've spoken with G about my loathing of doing the work I started my company for in 2001. Now we have moved into a mortgage-free house he has told me that if I want to cut down on the stuff I hate doing, I should. He'd sooner have me happy than stressed and miserable. So I have. I'm not building any new websites. I'm telling potential clients I'm too busy, and just keeping the existing ones and their odd requests for changes and updates.
But still, I have come to dread spending my days sitting in front of the computer. I've been using computers for more than 20 years, and am finding technology increasingly frustrating. I get cross with websites which don't accept the login I set up with them. (Not, I hasten to add, the ones I build myself). It seems you need a password for absolutely everything these days and it's overwhelming. I get cross with email spam, especially when it uses my own name as the sender, so I can't put it into junk mail as I don't want to ban my own email address from my own computer. I get cross with Microsoft products, particularly Excel as it keeps crashing when you least want it to. I get cross with Google products when they change the layout and setup and you can't find what you bloody well want in terms of functionality. I just get cross.
So I procrastinate. I figure I can spend at least an hour after breakfast each day on cleaning maintenance, i.e. washing up, sweeping the kitchen, using the carpet sweeper on the rest of the house, with a major hoovering at weekends, watering the garden and lawn. I can walk to the post office and check my PO box.
And when I do get onto the computer and go through the emails and say "fuck off" to every single junk email - today I fantasised about meeting the bastard who sent me 47 emails about Louis Vuitton products using my own email address, and strangling him -, I then spend some quality time on Facebook and personal sites. Anything to put off the inevitable work stuff.
I have even stalled the workday by writing this blog post. But all good things must come to an end. The sun is shining outside and the sky a superb azure. And I'm stuck in the office, about to research some social media products for a client.
Ooh! Procrastination alert: it's almost morning tea time. I'll go and put the kettle on and that will give me the opportunity to enjoy a cup of coffee outside in the sun…