Hey guys, sorry I basically dropped off the face of the planet. I’ve been …tired.
A few things happened – as you (probably) know, through 2019 and especially the latter half, I was becoming more and more stressed and overwhelmed in general (mostly due to agency bullshit around looking after my dad), and work, and so needing to do round-ups, well, the extra pressure didn’t help. Also, becoming more socially isolated as some regular friends seemed to drop off the face of the planet and never returned calls. Still, even as I stopped posting, I was still managing to get some painting done, though I was too burnt out to photograph, write posts and all that.
At the end of the year, the day before the anniversary of my mother’s death 2 years ago, Marouda and I took my dad out to a (pre) Christmas lunch. Not because of the proximity to Mum’s passing, but because he didn;t get to go to a different Christmas lunch, so we were making it up to him in a way – As we were leaving, Marouda got a mis-text from a “friend” who I paint kits for having a big old complain that I was taking a long time for this one kit he wanted done, even though I’d spent at least 2 12-hour Saturdays just weeks before with his (adult) son painting his kits together – a mix of doing stuff and mentoring on how to do other stuff. There was even the word “fucking” in there.
So I rang him, and basically gave him both barrels a number of times. I also used fucking as pretty much every second word. It felt fucking good, as well.
Then I didn’t paint again, until a couple of half-arsed scenery sessions in Jan/Feb, and that’s pretty much where I am now as far as painting goes. I’ve been playing World of Warcraft instead, because it takes less effort and occupies my brain in a way that painting doesn’t. Painting works as a zen thing, and I can listen to music or podcasts and think. WoW is constant problem-solving, so that occupies my mind in a much fuller and “immersive” way.
Then the fires hit. I’m in Melbourne, so I wasn’t directly affected, though it was weird seeing the smoke haze so heavy across the summer, and seeing things like Gyms and pools close. Still, seeing people pull together was heartening, and things like Vic Minis’ bushfire relief appeal was something that was able to bring a smile to my face.
Those friends I mentioned before? I even called them in early Feb to try to figure out what was going on, but basically got deflected and again, they never called back. Still don’t know what the deal is there, but whateverthefuck at this point. If people want to be like that, and I mean so little to them that they can’t initiate a call or even return a call over the span of months – then I’m essentially left with picking from two choices – either keep calling people who don’t call back or bother to call us at all which to my mind basically just morphs into crawling/begging – or essentially saying fuck ’em – and writing them off.
It’s not a hard choice. It’s basically been made for me. No prizes for guessing the correct one.
But now there’s something even more important than my butthurt feelings. COVID-19. While Marouda and I aren’t old enough that we’re in the danger zone, and we’re pretty healthy after a year of regular gym and healthy eating (not that anything is a guarantee), my father is in a whole lot of the high-risk categories. Over-70, diabetes, heart issues, emphysema, history of strokes and a couple of mini-heart attacks. If he gets it, he’s fucked. He’s really only got us to care for him, and naturally I’m in a job that exposes me to sick people all too often, and one that the Government seems to have no intention to allow remote work anytime soon. So I need to try to isolate him as much as possible (no more catching the fucking bus to the fucking supermarket, dad!) and also supply him with food, water and companionship. While working in a petri dish.
Hoo fucking ray.
So like I said. World of Warcraft>Painting for me right now.
Oh, and the fridge died today. Had to rush to get a replacement and got super lucky to have a guy willing to deliver it same day (on a Sunday afternoon) for an extra $50 cash. Replacing it wiped out our cash on hand though – but I guess it’s better than having it die in a month when the country is much further in the shit and things like whitegoods are no longer readily available.
Stay safe guys, and look after your vulnerable ones as well. I’ll still read and/or comment from time to time, but I don’t know if I’ll be painting much in the next while – hopefully I’ll see you on the other side of this.