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Garrett woke up before 7. He lapped the room. He jumped on the beds. He lay down on my bed. He lay down on his mum’s. A strategic barrage of kittens completely failed to even slow his onslaught.
At that point I conceded defeat and got out of bed.
So. Today is [[Sunday]]. Sun’s Day. Son’s Day?
I had a very long, interesting week indeed:
On Monday I went stepped through the doors of a school for the first time in twelve years. I made a hash of matters the time around, in Moneen. I was bored, apathetic, and ready to get out of school as soon as was humanly possible. In my entire last year I didn’t even bothered to go into class more than a quarter of the time – I was a master truant.
Since then I’ve been around. I’ve worked in everything from accounting through to retail, construction and veterinary. I’ve slopped shit, rubbed shoulders with some of North America’s richest elite in a Ferrari showroom, built walls on the side of a mountain in a forest two miles above a desert, balanced books for the world’s largest travel agency, counted t-shirts printed with tits, founded and owned my own photography company and lifted boxes in a warehouse for a living. I’ve resided in two countries, married a foreigner, had two children, and acted as the ambulatory plaything for a range of cats. I’ve survived a marriage breakdown and suicidal depression. I’ve gained dear friends on the Internet who I will likely never meet in person. And I have attended the first funerals of friends who passed away.
Overall, I have Had Experiences, loathe as I am to sometimes admit it.
I’m looking forward to the start of school proper in in a week. At the moment I am attending a pre-school refresher for returning mature students that offers a practical refresher in basic arithmetic and algebra, writing and note-taking techniques and managing my finances. The other half of the experience is more insubstantial, even if just as important: We are there to meet other returning students in a relaxed environment and to set ourselves into a mindset conducive of education.
The overall difficulty (and excitement) has been low. Yay (no, really).
As for my own place there, I’ve found that being well-read, curious and having no qualms about speaking out are finally working in my favour. A few people have already turned to me for help in interpreting and digesting what has been raised in class. It’s been a nice feeling, even if usually do my best to avoid eye contact and stay hunched over a book with my iPod blaring when I’m in the canteen.
I’m confident. I want to learn. I want to measurably better myself before I leave here in 2013.
One highlight of the course was Tuesday afternoon’s talk to the class from a campus representative of MABS, the Money Advice and Budgeting Service. It was a very sobering afternoon, but ultimately an uplifting one: No matter how completely piss-poor Mariah and I might be, even if we live hand-to-mouth and can’t buy half of the things we need, let alone want, we aren’t in debt. We aren’t tied to a house that is worth a quarter of what we paid for it, and we don’t let the children starve because we have crippling mortgage repayments. Neither of us have substantial personal loans hanging above our heads. If fate is good, we won’t either.
This didn’t stop Mariah and I from engaging in spirited dialogue about the health of our finances, income, outlays and overall management on Tuesday and Wednesday night.
On Thursday I left school early, sick. I wandered fitfully around Sligo for an hour before I finally gave up and went home.
Friday I went to Galway to collect packages, raid the home house for tools and miscellanea we left behind, drop off the cat carrier Katie so generously lent me. And, yeah, there was a visit my doctor. The consensus from Mariah is that the antidepressants are working to control my mood swings, so I am going to keep on them for the time being. The side-effects have (thank Christ!) been minimal: Some afternoon tiredness and headache.
Next week features more of the same classes and a presentation on just how a nearby star going [[supernova]] will kill us all.