Where does the time go?

I would really like to do some gardening. Actually, that’s not true – I don’t like gardening much. What I mean is, I would really like to have done some gardening; it’s all gone mad in the last week or two, and the whole garden (and it’s a big one) needs a good sortout.

But I won’t be able to get out there for a while; some unexpected things have turned up which means that this week will be a busy one. As if I ever have a quiet one! Last week looked as if it would be quite quiet, but I seemed to be just as busy as ever.

I added a bit to the Tewkesbury band project poems, and sent them off again. The composer likes them. I was worried about the guy from the band; he didn’t reply for days, and I thought he was trying to find a way to tell me that he didn’t like what I had written. In the end I emailed to ask him – but in fact he had been away and then ill, and he was perfectly happy with them all, so that’s ok. Phew.

On Tuesday I did some prep, and started publicising the slam I’ll be running in Lydney next month. I answered a lot of emails, but I still hadn’t quite recovered from my weekend’s illness, and I had to go and lie down for a bit. More emails and prep, and then I did manage to spend half an hour clearing one of the patios. I did an application for some work, and in the evening saw Pompeii. It was ok; clunky script, but all right. It seems that all the films I really want to see – like Tracks – are on at the cinema for only one week, and I miss them. There’s not much on this week, either.

On Wednesday I did another job application, and prep for a session with some young writers, and had my GP surgery group in the afternoon. I had a new lady, who was excellent; she really took it all in and was amazed by what we did. I went for a swim (v good for my injuries, which still hurt a bit), and did the surgery group writeup – and then answered emails until 10 pm.

On Thursday I did some prep for a big Poetry on Loan meeting, and finally set up my new printer, which looks very sleek and black. I added a new page to the Poetry on Loan website, to hold details of our forthcoming competition; I know I shouldn’t be proud of myself for something as simple as adding a page to a website, but I was very pleased to find that I remembered how to do it. I added some more stuff to the website, and sent lots of emails reminding people about projects that have been on backburners for a while. I’m usually working on 7 or more projects at a time, with others waiting to happen, and sometimes it’s hard to keep tabs on everything.

Tomorrow I’m going to visit the next prison I’ll be working in. My prison security clearance has run out so I had to fill in the vetting form again, and find all the documentation to go with it, and go and get some passport photos done, and get someone to fill in a reference form and countersign the photos. This sort of thing takes quite a long time. I did some prep for tonight’s rehearsal, and sent some emails to do with the Ledbury Poetry Festival.

On Friday morning I did my usual weekly accounts, and went to look at some chairs that I might want for the production of Quartet. Straight off afterwards to the Poetry on Loan meeting in Birmingham. These meetings are always uplifting; it’s great to hear everybody’s ideas, and to find out what all the libraries are doing in terms of poetry, despite the problems they have with staff shortages, etc. I ended the day with prep for a meeting I have this afternoon at a hospital, and a whole load of ironing.

On Saturday I was with a  group of young writers in Stratford. They are getting ready for a public performance, and we had a voice coach; later they all practised their pieces. Unfortunately I won’t be there for the performance, which is a shame – I would really like to see how they work on their pieces and use the feedback they had to improve.

Sunday was a lazy day, with just a bit of prep for the prison meeting.  I’d had another email, which really bothered me – I had forgotten to credit someone for something they had done, and I felt awful about it. I’m usually very careful about things like this, but in this case it’s just too late, and there’s nothing I could do except apologise. I think I’ve been forgiven; I hope so.

…and another week has gone, dominated by emails. And that’s where the time goes.

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