Last week I wrote about being sick and the resulting need to reevaluate priorities. The day job writing is going well, I think, and the novel is coming along. I’m still sick, though, probably as a result of the terrible weather we’ve been having. Little details are getting skipped, so that I have time to work and rest. It’s time for another round of reality checks.
To explain the weather situation, January is normally the coldest month in Finland. Where we’re at it tends to hover around -20 centigrade, give or take. The air is crisp and clean, the snow is beautiful, and while bundling up can be a hassle it’s still a magical time.
This year, though, it’s been warm. We’ve had temperatures above freezing, so all of the snow we got in December has melted. Instead of more snow, we’ve had rain. It’s chilly and damp, which honestly is worse than the dryness of extreme cold. Without all of that white covering everything, it’s dark. The Nordic darkness is something that has to be experienced. It is a palpable force that goes beyond the absence of light.
Reality Checks and the Little Details
The damp has my arthritis screaming and my respiratory issues flaring. The existential murk is punching me straight in the seasonal affective disorder. What’s being left undone are things like vacuuming, doing the laundry, and taking out the recycling.
Because time is a finite resource, I need to swap some things around. In the coming week I’m going to go mostly radio silent. Email will get checked once per day, social media twice. Blogging will be scaled back to maybe 2 or 3 posts, including this one. I’ve considered unplugging the router and the television and putting them in storage, but my wife vetoed the idea. Then I can tend to household chore and still get work done.
Chop wood, carry water, write. Eat and sleep in there somewhere, too. It’s really more the way I’d prefer to live my life anyway.