The 5 Minute Coffee Corner: Freedom

I’m out of isolation! Hallelujah!

For fear of speaking too soon, I somehow managed to swerve The Rona. James is on the mend, the dog has finally gone back to daycare for one day a week and I have salvaged every precious second of today whilst she’s been gone. It’s been truly wonderful to be able to work and concentrate on writing without her barking or mithering and my creative juices have been well and truly flowing.

The truth is, isolation wasn’t really that bad in the end, because as I said last week, it’s not like I could go anywhere anyway right now, so I wasn’t missing much. But miraculously, my mind decided for the entirety of the last week that I would have gone for a run on so many different occasions, if only I were allowed out the house. Funny that, isn’t it, the way the only time you feel like doing something is when you can’t?

So convincing myself to put my money where my mouth is, I started this week off with a run! Everyone seems to be doing ‘Couch to 5K’ right now, and whilst I’ve generally been running on and off for years, I thought I’d try it out. I absolutely loved it! I adapted it a little as I’m not a complete beginner, but I found that I thoroughly enjoyed the run, so will definitely be using it going forwards. I have had a self-imposed rule for years that I don’t run in Winter due to the dark mornings and nights, but one of the things I was most excited about when I began working for myself was that I could run anytime (because I could then run during the day). Well, I’ve been working for myself for four months now, and managed just one run prior to this week, so I figured it was time to stop making excuses and get out there. Now I have some form of hope to fit back into my clothes again when we eventually get out of constant tiers and lockdowns – woohoo!

I published a post at the weekend about showing up for yourself, and it’s generally been really interesting seeing peoples’ responses. I was completely OK with the fact that I’m a slob who is perfectly happy working in my comfies. But then yesterday happened.

I had a client call yesterday afternoon about taking on more work with them (woohoo!), and as those calls have only ever been audio, I stayed in my hoody with my freshly windswept post dog walk-hair and made ZERO effort to look even remotely put together. I think you can guess where this is going…

I logged into the Zoom call, and for the first time in the history of our working relationship, they’d decided to put their cameras on. They sat expectantly, waiting for me to appear and I had no option but to put mine on too. I switched it on having no clue what I looked like, and well, let’s just say I got what I deserved for not listening to Brooke Castillo. Brooke – you were right, it’s important to prepare for all eventual outcomes. The first glimpse I caught of myself was with my hair all over the place, my pale skin gleaming back at me and my scruffiest, most casual Adidas hoody looking exactly as scruffy and casual as it is. I looked as though I’d just got out of bed. It was 3pm. I considered apologizing for the way I looked, but figured that seeing as I’ve given it the big’un for the last week about being perfectly happy in my skin and not needing to make an effort, I had no choice but to own it and pretend that I intended to show up like this. All those people who replied to my post and said they like to make an effort before they start work, point taken. You’re doing the right thing my friend! I have learnt my lesson.

So, troublesome tales aside, what do I have for you this week? As always, click through to the links below to learn more (and they’ll open in a new tab which you can go back to once you leave me!)

Reading

When God was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman

I have to say, one of the things that I love about books (which also fills me with dread for when I write my own) is how subjective they are. You can have one person absolutely rave about a book, whilst another detests it. This book really brought this concept to light.

I finally read this because, as mentioned last week one of my favourite authors listed it as one of her favourite books of all time. I have to say, I found it a bit boring, generally unclear and I felt like I was just reading for reading’s sake. There was one chapter which evoked a little more emotion from me, but overall I felt bored and just trying to get to the end of this one.

There was also an unexpected sex section that really floored me, I found it distasteful and being the prude that I am, I felt the whole thing was a bit unnecessary. I told James about how it floored me because it came out of nowhere and was completely out of character when compared to the rest of the book, which was tame and dull. James suggested casually, as he always does with his pearls of wisdom, that maybe it was intentional. That got me thinking, because if it was an intentional writing technique, it was actually very clever and fitting for the life experience the character was going through in the book at the time, so I liked that. I guess I’ll never know if it was or not, and if the truth be known, I still don’t really care because it wouldn’t change my overall opinion of the book.

Not recommending this one, friends!

Watching

The Crossing

Oh I absolutely loved this series! I love anything sci-fi and especially if it contains time travel, so this series about a group of refugees fleeing a war-torn USA 250 years in the future and landing back into modern day time was right up my street. My attention was hooked throughout the entire series, and I thoroughly enjoyed watching it! I really, really hope there’s a second season coming because I really enjoyed it.

Cecilia Blomdahl Insta Stories

I am obsessed with watching this girl’s insta stories right now! Cecilia lives on Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago between mainland Norway and the North Pole. In the Summer, they have 24 hours of sun, but at the moment they’re in the middle of the ‘Polar Night’ which means 24 hours of darkness! She posts stories with the time of day on them, and it’s constantly pitch black. I would love to live there right now (except the fact that I get a bit antsy during these long winter nights here in the UK that actually aren’t long at all compared to what she’s living!) but I think I’d definitely need a SAD lamp if I lived on Svalbard.

That being said, it looks amazing and I’ve already looked up flights and Airbnbs to go on holiday there, of course I have.

Listening

Lose Your Head – London Grammar

I’d listened to a few bits of London Grammar’s over the years and generally liked them, but it was my cousin who really got me into them. She messaged me recently to see if I’d heard their new stuff (I hadn’t) and I went straight to their new songs – I am HOOKED! Such great songs – this one is my favourite right now!

I love the ethereal and eclectic sounds of London Grammar and I strongly recommend giving them a listen (starting with this new song, of course!) if you haven’t really listened to much by them before.

Before You Go…

I saw this and cried both from laughter and cuteness overload. Then I thought that the dog might genuinely be hurt, but read a lot of stories online from people who’d had similar experiences with their dogs, so then I cried laughing again. Best thing ever!

I also saw this and it made me tear up, because it is such a beautiful thing to do and gave me hope that the younger generations are thoughtful and caring and compassionate and all of the things that the media portray them not to be.

That’s it from me this week – have a lovely week ahead wherever you are in the world and I hope you’re not struggling too much if you’re still in yet another lockdown like us here in the UK! Hopefully 2021 will be the year we all regain some normality and appreciate everything we have that little bit more.

Featured Image Photo by Lavinia-Elena Mihai on Unsplash

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