Tuesday, 28 April 2015

The unbearable lightness of being unburdened

The worst experience I've had until recently was being suddenly and unhappily fired, thanks to a company resizing. It was abrupt and painful, but helped by the shared experience of the other people simultaneously being laid off. 

It turns out that's a blessing in comparison to the alternative, which is what I'm experiencing at the moment: the very slow winding-down of my work. It even feels good. Imagine: I am happy that before very long I'll be unneeded.

Teaching is a weird thing.

It hasn't helped that there's nothing else to take up the slack: my last essays were handed in today. All that's left is 9.75 hours of exams. I should be revising for them, and I will be - as much as one can for unseen translations - but they, too, will be done within a fortnight. On Friday 15 May, I'll be having a pint with my breakfast to celebrate the end of my (far, far too long) academic journey.

And I don't know what to do with myself.

Seriously. I should be doing things. But jobs that go from now until September are thin on the ground. So: to the blank sheet once more.

A friend of mine suggested a few ideas: cat pictures, the fleeting and fragile nature of love; the glories of the Bobbin.

(By the way, I ate a burger the size of my head today. It is the only thing I ate. It was entirely worth it.)

But cat pictures on the internet is kind of...passé. I don't know much about love. And the Bobbin? Well, it's glorious. It combines student dive with zombie apocalypse chic. I can't recommend it enough.

So what, then?

This will be THE ONLY ONE.
So I'm going to have a stab at something a bit more creative. We're going for Welcome to Nightvale as a vibe. Here we go:

Welcome to a small town in the rolling countryside of England. Where things chitter and bark and murble in the night; where the grass on the village green sways gently in the unmoving air; where the sound of children's laughter hangs like a noose in the breeze. 

Welcome to Morkton.

This is the first audio edition of the Parish Newsletter, read by me, your host. It's an exciting prospect and brings us bang up to date with the 21st century, and it's been made possible by the kindness of several unnameable donors. I'd like to say their names, but they've been written in the letters of a civilisation that perished in fire and death, and when I look at them I find blood pooling in my eyes. So...thank you, unnameable donors!

The next item in the Parish Council newsletter regards the fact that the King's Arms will be holding its weekly pub quiz on Tuesday. There will be a multiple choice round, a picture quiz, and a quick-fire round. The theme is "forbidden knowledge" and- goodness! Even the Council will be in attendance to congratulate the team with the most forbidden knowledge. What an honour! Since I don't know anything I'm not supposed to know, I'm not going to enter, but I wish you all the best of luck.

What else is there? Hmm. Quite a good crossword this week, it's fiendish! If you know any of the answers, you mustn't tell me, because that's cheating. And cheaters never prosper, because it is difficult to prosper when soldiers with no insignias crash through your window and take you wherever soldiers with no insignias take people. It's either to church or the building in the square that's only black because it absorbs all light. One of the two.

Ah, it says here that the Girl Guides are organising a bake sale on Monday. They'll be over by the allotments, selling carrot cake, red velvet cake, Danish buns and our local delicacy, finger fudge! I am definitely going to head over, I haven't had finger fudge since my mother used to make it. Back before she - 

Huh. That was weird. For a moment there I felt like I almost got hold of some forbidden knowledge, but - it's gone. Like Police Constable Lucy always says: "Remember something you think might be important? It's not. Forget it and go back to your life of ease and comfort, untroubled by thoughts of important things." Words to live by from our representative of justice in this little village.

I'm going to wind it up there, I think. It might have something in it, and I'd certainly like to produce something in homage to the genii over at Welcome to Nightvale, but it needs more development. 

And winding it up is probably what I'll do with this blog, too. It's been a great record of my life at university, when I've updated it, but I'm moving forward - in theory.  I'm going to try to close this particular chapter and move on. There will (probably) be graduation photos and a last, rose-tinted look back over what I've achieved (and definitively failed to achieve). But this is the beginning of the end. I hope you enjoyed reading it half as much as I enjoyed writing it. (If I'm optimistic, you like it even more than that).

Thanks as always for reading and I daresay I'll be back to write even more before too long. 

You're the best.