Category Archives: Journal

And then I got COVID

I really didn’t seriously think I was going to get COVID anytime soon. Most of the people around me weren’t getting it, and it felt a bit distant. Then the youngest came up with a positive test last week. She went off to hide in her room, and we started being super careful about masking and such.

And then on Saturday I began to feel a bit unwell. Not terribly unwell, but a bit. I took a test. The result was negative. I went about my business, while masking everywhere I went.  That night I woke up coughing and took another test. Weird ambivalent result. Took two more over the next hour — clearly negative.

The next morning I had errands to run so I took another RAT. Negative.  The weird test result bothered me, though, so even though I’d had three negative test results in a row, off I went to get a PCR test. I then went home to self-quarantine until I got the results. Got the results on Monday — positive. I think technically the 7am Saturday test was positive, looking back at the photo (luckily I was isolating and masking),  so I’m just trying to work out when I’ll get out of quarantine – seven days from Saturday or Sunday. The main issue is voting. Need to get out and vote and play my part in kicking the current government to the curb.

PS: On day four of my COVID, so far the symptoms have been fairly mild. Fingers crossed that holds up, and that Marianne doesn’t get it too.

Cat people

In October 2018 we went looking for a new cat. Sophie found the slightly wild and temperamental Gigi somewhere south of the river, and I think mostly thought she was pretty, and said she should come home with us.

Jessica, who is phobic about animals, said she was up for it. Sophie’s birthday was approaching, and her present to Sophie was to agree to us having a cat. I was, to be honest, pretty neutral. I’d last had a cat more than a decade earlier and didn’t feel like I needed to repeat the experience. But Gigi was renamed Gwen (actually something longer, but I’ll just mistype it), and joined the family.

It’s been a very mixed experience. Gwen was a bit wild, but settled into a fairly sweet but temperamental cat who mostly wanted to be left alone, which didn’t really suit Sophie, who wanted a cuddly best pal, or Jessica, whose resolve failed utterly and to do this day just wishes she’d leave. It’s not been easy but she’s cute. Marianne, who had no interest in cats, has become Gwen’s bestie, which is kind of funny.

This photo shows her not long after her arrival, just curious.

Today is an odd day. I was due to be in the office but am working from home. We have Jon-Paul coming to repair the hallway floor, the first of many, many repairs and upgrades to the house, which has fallen into sufficient disrepair that one tradesperson asked if it was a rental (rude!). Hopefully, that will go well. I did get a walk in, but everything else feels stalled. Other than that, things are just ambiently stressful, though it’s a lovely day.

More on Wednesday

Didn’t get the additional exercise on Tuesday so some ground to make up on Wednesday. I did watch a handful of episodes of Made for Love and am hooked.  The copy of Le Guin’s  The Found and the Lost arrived too. Sadly,  Amazon’s poor packaging meant the dustjacket was slightly torn, so that’s not so good. It’s both an impressive and a useless book, in my opinion. Too big and bulky to be useful as a book, but filled with wonderful work, which is frustrating.

I did get my tax return for 2020/21 submitted which means, assuming the ATO doesn’t dispatch their stealth ninjas for me, that a refund is on its way. I have to get the quarterly return done, then on to the next annual one. I also have an enormous backlog of editing and such to do. I think I fell into a real funk, editing-wise, when Saga dropped the year’s best series, so I need to find my feet there a bit.

We also had the company we’d chosen to build our new patio decided not to proceed this morning, so that needs more attention. It does feel a bit one step forward, six steps back right now, but I’m sure it will improve.

Another day

Having bounced hard off Apple’s Severance, which I found a deeply unhappy viewing experience, I’ve enjoyed the first two episodes of Made for Love much more. The similarities may not be obvious, but one is a tech-bro horror/fantasy about work and the other is a tech-bro horror/fantasy about love and relationships. It’s not actually funny, but it is engaging. Cristin Milioti is great, and Ray Romano almost always works (though his inclusion is, to say the least, heavy-handed). I’m optimistic the next few episodes will be interesting. I am on the fence as to whether a couple of moments of violence in the first episode are justified, but we’ll see.

Other than that, it’s Tuesday. Exercise will have to wait till after work. I’m back in the day job office, which is fine, but not my first choice. I did get all of yesterday’s tasks done, so the taxes are off to the accountant shortly. I also got no almost no reading done yesterday, which was not good. I’m in the early stages of John Darnielle’s Devil House and enjoying it. I seem to have abandoned to disinterest Adam Oyenanji’s debut, Braking Day, but may come back to it. Time will tell.

Monday morning, again

The pandemic progresses.  With the recent changes to masking rules in Western Australia, my day job employer is calling us back to work. We’ve been working from home on and off for a while but were at home full-time for the past six weeks or so.  Today (Monday) is the end of that. We’re now back to our previous roster, which means Tues-Thurs I’ll be in the office. This is not the end of the world, but it’s not my first choice.

Today started slowly because I am on a late shift.  Up at 7am, had a cup of swamp water (peppermint tea), out for a walk, then home to work. I have a lot to do, both for the day job and not, so busy.

In the meantime, since I’m not currently editing a year’s best anthology series for anyone, I’ll try to note some of the best short fiction I’m reading about the place. My favourite story of the moment is Maureen McHugh’s wonderful “The Goldfish Man“, from Uncanny 45. Because it’s online and shareable, you should go read it if you see this. It would be in my year’s best.