Time running away; the need to prioritise

Once again I regret the absence of the Blog for many days now.  To use a cliché, time has been running away from me.  Strange concept that, given that we think of time is a kind of measuring rod, something fixed, against which we compare what is happening to us and around us.  Blog Followers will know that now and again I start ruminating about perception of time, usually with reference to ‘The Magic Mountain’ by Thomas Mann.  I’ll curb the urge to yet again philosophise about time because the root of the issue at the moment is that, to use a common excuse, there isn’t enough of it.

‘Not enough time’ is always an excuse, never a reason.  The fact is that when we offer the explanation that we have failed to do something because there wasn’t time, the real reason is that we failed to do it because we didn’t give it a high enough priority.  There are many competing calls on our time and, consciously or subconsciously, because we cannot do everything we would like to do, we prioritise them as we go.  Which means some things just don’t get done.  It sounds rude to say to someone “sorry I didn’t come to see you/do that thing because it wasn’t high enough priority for me”.  But that is the stark reality.  Time is there, 24 hours in a day.  It’s up to us what we do in it.

I’m trying to get everything sorted ready to go to Greece and, as always, there are just too many things to cram into the time available.  The last two weeks have been a blur of activity.  I’m still trying to unscramble priorities and there are not many days left now.

One of the top priorities has been publishing the book of Enfys’s poems.  That is now complete.  It will be in an increasing number of bookshops over the next few weeks and can be obtained from Ruth or Dai.  I have also been prioritising a way of making the book available on-line and have cobbled together a web page.  It’s not perfect but it works as tested out this morning.  If you want a copy click on:


Another priority has been to prepare the garden for the summer.  Still a bit more to do but just about got there yesterday.  The vegetable garden all planted up through weed-suppressant fabric or sown with seed; potatoes earthed up for the last time.  Seed heads from pernicious weeds have been taken off, some pulled out of the ground.  Foxgloves now coming into their own in the old bottom lawn, Acers spreading to throw deep shade to deter growth under them.  The fruit garden covered in weed suppressant fabric and mulched; raspberries tied in.

Foxgloves, becoming increasingly prolific in what was once a lawn

... and closer up

Gooseberries, blackcurrants, redcurrants, blueberries .... and a prickly pear

Courgettes, leeks, sprouts, red cabbage, purple sprouting broccoli, blue potatoes, fennel and artichokes

.... a closer look

Low growing Acers had been swamped by other vegetation, now cleared

I have also prioritised meeting up with people I haven’t see for a while.  One visit to Cardiff had a very bizarre conclusion.  At the end of a very enjoyable evening in a Mediterranean restaurant in City Road I was given a lift to the station to catch the train home.  What I hadn’t realised was that it had been the final of the Heineken Cup and the city centre was swarming with rugby fans.  No problem until on reaching the station I found that the concourse outside was fenced off like an old-fashioned cattle market with long queues of people for different destinations indicated by large banners.  We were held there in pens like cattle until 5 minutes before the train was due to leave when we were allowed into the station and onto the platform flanked all the way by police in riot gear and railway personnel. No hint of crowd trouble or aggression of course.  Didn’t they know this was a rugby match not some local soccer derby!!  I found it demeaning being herded like an animal but the up-side of it was that there were no railway personnel on the crowded train to take my fare.  Having travelled down on the bus using my bus pass I didn’t have a return train ticket …. so a cheap trip.

Still a massive amount to do, including getting to grips with packing.  And cleaning the house, neglected while I beavered away in the garden.  Not nice to come back to untidiness and dirt I know was there when I left.

Not many days to go.  I travel up to Stockport on Thursday and then fly on Saturday.  I’m really looking forward to it.  No meals to prepare.  No housework.  No garden tidying.  No conscience about not getting on with the decorating.  And sunshine.  Lots of sunshine.  To a SAD person like me that’s very much to be looked forward to.  Time to leave Grey Britain for a while

All being well, blog followers will have the pleasure of a return to The Daily Blog once I get to Greece and suss out WiFi connections.

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