The predominant experience over the last few weeks? Tiredness. I’ve been sick, mostly minor ills in the big scheme of things, but for the better part of a month. First the threat of a cold that turned into a horrid chesty cough that took a week (and two bottles of Benylin) to shift, then a few days later a proper headcold that blindsided me for a whole weekend, and left everything smelling and tasting of slate mucus for even longer. Even as I write this a week later I’m still groggy from congestion, the kind that sloshes around inside your head and makes your ears sting when you bend over. Ugh.
Associated with that has been a general sapping of energy, that kind of non-specific tiredness that can’t be appeased by a nap or an extra hour in bed. Yep, I need a holiday. Which in my case just means a few days of doing feck-all. Roll on the end of September.
Anyway, I haven’t been completely knackered every single day. I’m still getting work done — that includes four long-ish film reviews this month, plus 2,500 words about wrestling — and I’ve finally got out on my bike for a proper cycle round Dundalk. Like, literally around Dundalk, riding a loop south to the seaside village of Blackrock. I’ll be doing that again soon, provided it’s not raining. Still on the lookout for other routes, of course, for cycling and for walking.
What else is new? Well, I need new glasses, for one. Went for an eye test six months later than planned, about a week or so after my left eye started twitching like mad again. The same twitching that sent me to the optician and made me a spectacle-wearer in the first place. The eye test confirmed there’s been a slight change in my vision, necessitating new prescription lenses, but I’m told the latest twitching is more down to stress than anything else. Wonderful.
I’ll sort that out in September. I couldn’t wait any longer to sort out my hair, though. Quite a few barbers within walking distance up here in Dundalk, almost as many as there are Chinese takeaways (and there are a lot of Chinese takeaways) but I finally found/chose one, in the back of a sweet shop. Yes, a barber in the back of a sweet shop! It’s this one here. Got my usual, a Number 3 all over, but didn’t get any sweets. Probably for the best, as I’ve been snacking on the bad stuff a bit too much lately. I blame the tiredness.
The same day I got sheared, myself and herself bussed out to the retail park to procure weedkiller and a lawnmower so we can finally tackle the triffids in the garden. The mower I was looking at turned out to be on sale, too. Bonus! Taxi back during a cloudburst (because who wants to lug a lawnmower onto a bus in the rain? Besides, taxis here have a flat local rate of €6, which is handy) and we were home by 2.30pm. Nice one. Still haven’t finished putting the mower together, though. I blame the tiredness.
On Friday we were sad to miss our friends Declan and Alan’s wedding (our sudden upping of sticks basically made it impossible) though we did pass on our best wishes to Declan in person a few days before at an impromptu drinks-in-the-pub gathering. I’ve seen the requisite photos of the happy day on social media and the whole thing looked fantastic. And as luck would have it, the very next day President Michael D finally signed the Marriage Equality Act into law. Hopefully a few weeks/months from now, once they can sign the papers that make it official, we can toast their nuptials proper.
The weekend took us down to Dublin for a quick visit to the MCM Comic Con at the RDS (even smaller than last year’s, alas, and strangely bereft of actual comics; I think their UK shows have more variety, more vendors… just more) before taking the Dart out to Howth for a meal with the family to celebrate what would’ve been my uncle Pearse’s birthday. We couldn’t get to the funeral in June, as I wrote earlier this month, so that was our first chance to give our condolences to my aunt Jacqui. After the meal we went out to the pier to scatter some of Pearse’s ashes in the harbour, a part of the city he always loved, and to toast his memory. Here’s to you, Pearse.