I begin the day writing about Friday, thinking about my anxiety, about work and the changes that have happened. I pause often to consider how I was feeling then, remembering the fear, the doubts, the lurking darkness in me.
I put the phone back on the bedside table and picks up my book. It is easier to lose myself in the turbulent world of Mongolia in 1920 than to consider ours in 2020. I barely have time to read a chapter that my phone rings. Surprised by the sounds, I pick it up, expecting an unknown caller but instead I see my friend’s name on the screen, the very same one I was just chatting with on Twitter.
I walk past my partner, my hand brushing her neck, and step outside. I pour much needed water into the pots containing lily of the valley, mint, and unknown plant. We picked up the last two from a garden front with a sign for ‘free plants’. We only recognised the mint from its smell.
he flow of motorised vehicles is taking back the main roads. I can’t help but wonder why. Are all those people going to work or coming back from work? It’s an odd time for such traffic. Are they all driving to different places for their daily outing? Are they visiting family?
I know full well what will happen. Either my partner will take the lead or I’ll mumble something incomprehensible, get confused and bright red in the face, and repeat in a much simpler way that I heard she would like eggs and we have some, so here take this box out of my hands before I self combust.
My eyes dance between the timer and the thermometer until finally the alarm on my phone rings. I spur into action. Out with the water, in with the developer. I press start on my phone timer and begin to agitate the tank for a minute. I put it down and dip the bleach-fix (blix) solution in the hot water bath.
My partner guides me through aerobics movements and stretches before we repeat the run up the stairs, press-ups, stretches, sit-ups, and back downstairs. And again. And again. My arms collapsing, I announce that I have had enough. We stretch our aching bodies before stepping into a warm shower.
‘Oh you know.’ She pauses for a second. ‘It’s all nonsense isn’t it?’ There is a strain in her voice as she says the words. I do not need to look to see her face long and worn down by worries. It seems ages ago when I saw her smiling, her eyes filled with joy. She had just bought a new caravan then. It has been laying dormant on her drive ever since.