28 September 2008

giving is receiving

Not much is happening at the moment. I had hoped to be busy enough to appreciate the calm, but really, I'm itching to disturb it.

I was paid a visit last weekend by an old friend from Townsville. Janet and I have only kept in touch sporadically over the past couple of years, but she came down for a wedding and stayed a few nights here. I was fighting off a generic lurgi from two different directions, so I wasn't ideal company, but made a good time of it. The Crocs lost, sadly, but we took a bus trip up to the Barossa Valley and spent most of the Monday shopping. Most of this I've done before, but I've never spent quite so much time with a $185 bottle of Wolf Blass Platinum Shiraz; it cost me a tenner just to taste it, but it was superb, worth every cent.

Work is about the same. I've been on-site on and off for the past two weeks, so I have had at least some proper work to do, even if it's not really mine. Now that I'm officially on standby - a status change that, in itself, took nearly three months - I'm a bit worried about turning into a bit of a dogsbody, getting dragged in to do the dirty work on everyone's little pet projects that they never get time to do. I almost want someone to tell me that we really have run out of things for me to do, so that I'd know that they'd stopped kidding themselves. Actually, I wonder if someone is going to tell me something about anything; the jobs I've been lined up for keep falling through one by one, which is as much a curse as a blessing.

Things aren't getting any easier on the relationship front, either. I had hoped to set up my actual common-or-garden date for last night, but my lady friend hardly had time even to tell me how busy she already was that night. I feel that she's done a lot more favours for me than I've been able to return so far, and I'm trying hard not to be impatient about when I'll be able to restore the balance.

We're even coming up to another special occasion that won't go exactly as planned. My birthday is only two weeks away, and as usual, not only do I not know what I want, but the only things I can think of are too big and too expensive for other people to buy them for me, and I'm too fussy to let them do it anyway. Try this combination out some day: it's a sure-fire way of not getting the presents you want. (Not that I don't appreciate people trying, of course - and, unlike some of my friends, I do like a pleasant surprise.)

That said, as presents go, if there's nothing you want, maybe there's something you need. Trouble is, what I need more than anything now is to give. I've even thought of calling my birthday off this year and using that time to do something for someone else. I've even got a few ideas already about who I can serve and what they might like. Maybe that's was missing. The serving, that is, not the other people.

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