Now Comes The Reckonin’

It’s not so long since I last posted here immediately post dental-trauma. On that occasion, the trauma turned out to be nerve damage that took months to settle down. On THIS occasion, I am feeling slightly shellshocked by – and still oozing blood from – the extraction (an unsuitably clinical term for an entirely visceral procedure) of my right upper wisdom tooth this morning. Removed but not lost: I have it here in a bag, misshapen and unsettlingly ugly, pour encourager les autres with what will doubtless be paroxyms of fascinated, squealing revulsion, ensuring he brushes, in future, ALL his bloody teeth, even the acutely inaccessible-to-toothbrush partially-erupted wisdom ones.

I was becoming increasingly less satisfied with my logical decision-making process by the time I entered the surgery. The Dentist had proclaimed that Out was the only option, but that he was entirely happy to leave it in situ until it caused me pain. I decided that pain + extraction was worse, on balance, than simple extraction, and booked myself in promptly. Sat in the waiting room, I felt that a little judicious procrastination might have had its merits, after all.

Modern dentistry, contact lenses and the internet are often cited by me as cherished facets of modern living. Regarding dentistry, I can be more specific: Articaine is, quite frankly, da shit. The worst I had to suffer was the hauntingly hideous noise (highly reminiscent of someone forcing a long series of particularly gristly lamb-chop bones apart) 2” from my ear, and the undeniably unpleasant experience of eventually being pulled slightly sideways in The Chair by the force of the steady tugging. Dear god, the tugging. Still, it was a professional job carried out without whiskey, blacksmith’s pliers, OR a knee in my chest, so I am, on balance, satisfied with the outcome.

I was given strict instructions to rinse with warm saline solution. I am sat here with tissues, a large jug serving as a spitoon, and a mug of cooling salt-water, and I’m making more anguished, wet noises than a drowning bull elephant. Salt water makes me gag at the best of times, and swilling it Back and Up seems to involve unhealthy gyrations of my head and neck if I am to avoid my tongue getting the full salt monty.

That sounds rude. And I am sinking into self-pity here, so let us quickly move past the the bit where I tell you that I totally failed to get a job last week, that there were several identical vacancies for, that I was ridiculously over-qualified for but would have really quite liked nevertheless, and that I thought I’d performed ok during interview for. I’m not sure what went wrong, really. Possibly I am simply an insufferable interviewee; it seems likely. I should really get my act together and scrape another application together for a different job I’ve spotted, but I don’t fancy it as much, and I feel horribly despondent about the whole business, and I have basically already decided in my head I’m not going to get it, and so I shouldn’t bother. The psychiatrists have a term for that sort of thing.

Moving on! The weather is sublime. Absolutely record-breakingly, unseasonably gorgeous. An unbroken spell of weather like this would be entirely acceptable in August. Next week, when Harry is on Easter holidays and we are free to Caravan To Places, is, of course, forecast gloomy. However, I had a postcard from May & H this morning from Cornwall – which, location-wise, is pretty much unbeatable in good weather – and if any two people deserve a decent holiday with spectacularly kind weather and in beautiful surroundings: tis them, so I vicariously rejoice.

And life is being good to me, really. I have time and freedom, if not any actual money, to indulge my hobbies, and I have been tackling my bucket list – forgive the phrase – with increased gusto of late. Courtesy of my parents, I have started guitar lessons again, because I have been playing for 26 years and I am still stuck on Fairly Awful. I have also took up my piano studies where I last left off, which was Buying An Actual Piano. I had intended to spend my maternity leave prior to Harry’s arrival in a piano crash-course, but he arrived 36 hours before the leave even started, so Piano has been gathering dust ever since.

I have found, to my disappointment, that I can no longer sight-read the treble clef. *chagrin* I have had to start again from scratch. I am also discovering – although no need to stop any presses – that muscle memory and Actual Learning of a new skill comes harder in adulthood than childhood. Who knew. It is entirely characteristic of me that I have a wealth of assorted musical instruments in the house, all of which I can extract a tune – of sorts – from, but I can play none of them to any standard approaching Competence. This irks me about myself, particularly as I know that I am musical. As such, I am optimistic that if I keep plugging away at it, I will eventually be able to Entertain and Delight. I am also vaguely mystified as to why I should be musical, as I come from two most unmusical parents, both of whom struggle to say if a note is higher or lower than its predecessor. (This, btw, is a pleasing way to waste half an hour if you suspect you are either a prodigy or a musical dunce.) A clear argument for nuture over nature, possibly.

I have also battered my laptop disk drive into submission, and finally installed my conversational French software. I read French far better than I speak it, which isn’t saying much – but I’m still (can you spot a pattern?) highly dissatisfied with my own abilities, and frustrated at the years I’ve spent placidly ignoring said lurking dissatisfaction.

My hobbies are being given full fling. I have treated myself to a new hobby drill – a proper Dremel multi-tool! (The time to humour me with an impressed intake of breath would be now…) I have dug out an oak house name sign that I began years ago and gave up because my gouges were all blunt and too big, and have nearly completed it. It is not a thing of pronounced beauty, but it should bring us out of our current anonymity, at least. I also have plans for a new set of gouges (borrowed, but the intended borrowee doesn’t actually know this yet) as I have a nice elm board that should carve well. I have the number of my local wood-carvers association, too, but I have met them all before and I fear I am too greatly deficient of beard to join – although sawdust did give me a fine 7 o’clock shadow earlier this week.

I have an unfinished needlework project I began 20 years ago. I have messed about happily with glass paint, and eyed up courses on tiffany lamp-making that I can’t afford. I am considering obtaining some upholstery gubbins and re-covering some old pieces of furniture. I have more fimo knocking about than you can shake a thin stick at. There is a 10-week sculpture course I really, really fancy. I could go on. The house bulges with my unfinished projects: so do my trousers, sadly, with the weight I am signally failing to lose.

But for today, I will confine my efforts to sitting in the sun, spluttering saline and blood noisily into the blasted jug.


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