Posted by PintofStout on April 4, 2006
Well, I’ve been busy the last week-and-a-half. A__ and I had taken a week’s vacation from employment to actually work. So, I added onto the deck of my house, added a driveway around the back of the house, and nearly blinded and crippled myself on the process – but it was fun.
I have a few observations about doing directed work for one’s self as opposed to some sort of nebulous employment with slight rewards and mostly negative motivations. During a normal work week I will be miserable at actually getting out of bed in the morning, taking my good sweet time (hoping the world will end sometime before I have to leave for work, no doubt). So I get to work usually between 8:30 and 9:00 AM. I proceed to drag myself through the day and drive home (it is an hour commute each way). By the time I get home I feel tired and exhausted and am completely sapped of motivation to even cook dinner, do other household chores, or even write a blog entry. But this past week, I was surprised at my energy level and enthusiasm for the work I had to do. At the end of the day, it was a real tired – from actual exertion – that I felt, and it felt good. My mornings most of the week started earlier than a regular work day, with hardly a grumble about getting out of bed. The feeling of being in complete control of my time under no compulsion, whatsoever, was a really great feeling, and instead of being indolent and lazy, I actually got things accomplished. (The picture at the top of the page is the deck project in its current state. More before-and-after pictures are in the photo section of my main page.)
M__, my little niece, made me realize something else I usually overlook. Do you remember when you had play clothes and good clothes? Now what do you have? I, sadly, have work clothes, now, instead of play clothes. But, I enjoyed the working vacation so much; I am going to take to calling them play clothes now. This isn’t just a semantic change, but a change in outlook, as well.
We proceeded to greater D.C. area for the last half of the week and weekend for a visit and to baby-sit another niece. It is a good thing, too; many more days of working on the deck may have killed me. I sprained a thumb on Saturday catching a joist that missed it’s hanger, ended up in the hospital with a scratched cornea from sawdust (wear those safety glasses!) on Sunday, and strained my back lifting a miter saw on Tuesday. If we hadn’t left on Thursday, who knows what shape I’d be in!
While in D.C., we had a chance to see the Cherry blossoms in mostly-full bloom (More pictures in the photos section of the front page). They were certainly beautiful, but it was all kinda ruined for me by the general surroundings. After that visit, I don’t believe I’ll ever go into that monument to statism again. The glorification (and justifications) for war and veiled tyranny made my skin crawl. If I never see the Mall or a monument again, it will be too soon.
Generally, I’m really happy about the vacation, and, as usual, it was too short. Monday was dreadfully hard to get out of bed to go to work, and today was even harder. Maybe I’m psyching myself out and I shouldn’t dread it as much. Maybe this is just a natural rebellion – a reflex, really – to the unnatural act of employment in these modern times.