A Week in the Life of Liberty Gilmore and her Long-Suffering Boyfriend
I have a bad day at work. Things get a bit on top of me and I come home, not upset, but frustrated. I go to my mothers on the way home to pick up my mail (two years after leaving home and still some things are sent her way) and vent.
She’s very understanding. I ring the Boyfriend and ask if we can have dinner with her because she’s kindly offered and I don’t feel like cooking. We stay late, eat lasagne and look at old photographs Mum’s husband has somehow got linked to his new blueray player. We laugh at old memories and marvel at how much we’ve all grown.
Mum finds some of me looking incredibly awkward in a pair of leather trousers and a very country denim jacket from when I was about twelve years old and terribly un-fashion conscious. The Boyfriend laughs. I hunt for a photo of me with my head in a wheelie bin (don’t ask) but can’t find it. We head home and I feel better, but it’s much later than we’d normally get back and I haven’t prepared for work. We rush through the bathroom and head to bed.
The Boyfriend is on earlies, so we’re going to work at the same time. We trip over each other as we try to get ready. He leaves about two minutes before I do.
I have an easy day at work, which makes up for the rubbish one I had yesterday, and tomorrow we have a day of Teambuilding and getting to know each other. Which I’m dreading, being generally antisocial, but it’s a nice end to the week in a sense.
The afternoon is taken up with a Road Safety Presentation, which I have to babysit. I think I’m immune to it, having heard it all before from the Boyfriend, who doesn’t spare the graphic details of accidents he’s been too, but the counsellor talking about having to console people who’ve lost their children gets me and I spend half an hour trying to swallow the lump in my throat. I drive home like an old lady – pressed up against the wheel like it gives me more control over my car.
The Boyfriend has ‘First Thursday of the Month’ Drill at the Fire Station, so I cook a quick dinner for him and he’s off. He says he’ll be back by nine, but at half eight he rings to say it will be closer to ten. I have jobs to do but I’m trying to review a book, so I leave them to the last minute. The Boyfriend is early and we fight about the chores not being done. I tell him he’s a clean freak (true) and a germphobe (not true). He tells me that book reviews aren’t important (definitely not true) and I get very annoyed. We go to sleep without speaking.
I get to leave later than usual because of the Team Building. The extra half hour in bed feels so good, but not nearly long enough. The boyfriend leaves before me, and I have the house to myself, yet still end up rushing.
At work I have to reflect on my strengths and weaknesses and discuss them in great detail with my partner, chosen out of a hat the previous day. I’m fortunate enough to be paired with someone who doesn’t take it too seriously and we talk about everything but what we’re supposed to.
I talk about arguing with the Boyfriend and she tells me about fights with her husband. We both agree that you fight about stupid stuff when you live with someone.
We have to create something that sums up our ideas from the day. Not being an exhibitionist (except from behind a computer screen) I play the piano while our group raps about caring and sharing. We are received well. I think the event leader, who plays guitar and made us sing stupid songs, is jealous of our talent.
We leave on time, but an overturned horse cart on the motorway delays me by almost an hour. I get home but have to leave straight away for my first aerobics class. The Boyfriend is not happy about my ‘hello/goodbye’ routine and I don’t blame him. I feel bad, but the class is paid for and I feel worse about wasting money.
Mum is with me for the class. We grapevine and knee lift our way through a torturous half hour, then stretch, press-up and sit-up our way through an even more torturous second half. We leave feeling exhausted but smug and book in for next week.
I go home, and after a much needed bath spend some equally much needed time with the Boyfriend. He’s working tomorrow because of his shift pattern, so I won’t see him all day. We go to the shops and buy fireworks, but won’t be setting them off until next week. The Boyfriend’s best friend will be down from Leeds and we’ll take advantage of Mum’s garden to set off some rockets. Mum usually puts on food and we all have a great time.
I spend far too long doing work for next week. Feel like I’ve put in a whole shift, but have at least finished before the Boyfriend gets home.
Unfortunately, I haven’t been shopping, so dinner is a bit scarce. We eat rubbish and vow to go shopping tomorrow when we are both off work and I have access to the car with a boot. My car is pretty, but not practical.
We go to bed early and watch The Illusionist. I’ve seen it before, and get equally annoyed this viewing at the lack of explanation for the magic tricks. The Boyfriend is more concerned about the size of Jessica Biel’s backside.
We fell asleep in the film, so we watch the end in bed while we wait for ten o’clock to roll around and the supermarket to open. We decide to have a Wetherspoons breakfast instead, so head into town, planning to shop on the way back. It’s my Step-Dad’s birthday so we drop into visit them after breakfast and spend far too long indulging my two-year-old sister in her favourite selection of youtube videos. (You try resisting the world’s cutest voice saying ‘nother song?’)
Mum and I are supposed to be going to the Gym, but both carry aches from our aerobics session. The Boyfriend cracks a joke about it being an ‘anaerobics’ session and we both stare at him blankly.
We spend far too much money in the supermarket and head home. I have to laminate some things for work, but find the time to watch Valkyrie on Sky before we head off to our ballroom dance class. Well, we watch all but the last five minutes, and get very annoyed when we come back to find it was only five minutes, not the ’14 minutes remaining’ that Sky would have us believe.
Our ballroom dance class is freezing, and our teacher laments at great length about her battles with the owners of the hall over the heating. We roll our eyes and hope she gets us moving soon before we turn into icecubes. We start with a social Foxtrot – an easy and elegant, but boring dance. The Boyfriend messes around and we bicker.
One of the other dancers has exchanged her partner for a new one. The previous one we called ‘Mr Swiggle Hips’ because he was a salsa dancer and like to move his hips, even when we were standing still. At first we think the new bloke is an improvement, but it turns out he is just as swiggley as the last.
We mince our way through the waltz, but totally rock the quickstep. It’s always been the Boyfriend’s best dance.
At home we watch the end of Valkyrie and the Boyfriend asks, as we get into bed, if I think it will freeze. It’s been quite chilly and the Boyfriend is on call. I say it’s likely, but he can’t be bothered to get dressed and put the windscreen cover on the car. He says his alerter won’t go off anyway.
At midnight, almost exactly, it does. I laugh. I’m half asleep but vaguely aware of the irony. The car isn’t frozen. The Boyfriend makes the shout. I fall asleep and don’t wake up again until half three, when the Boyfriend gets back in bed. He’s been back for two hours, he tells me, but couldn’t sleep. I wonder if I should be worried about not hearing the door open.
The Boyfriend doesn’t work mondays but I do. I drag myself to bed and head off to work. Monday is meeting day, but I’m in luck. The meeting isn’t for me and I get back at normal time. I ring Mum to organise a gym session, but she has two crying babies who need her attention so we cancel til wednesday.
I plod through some more work. I eat a whole packet of Skittles to ease the process and feel sick, both physically and at myself for being so greedy. I lament to the Boyfriend who is at college completing the third year of his degree. He tells me of his course problems and how he is having trouble getting back into learning after a year out.
At nine he gets home and we watch some rubbish on the telly until we go to bed. The Boyfriend tells me I can pick a film, so I go with The Prestige to keep the magic theme going. The Boyfriend denies ever having seen it before (even though he has) and I wish I could forget things that completely and watch them fresh each time, because then perhaps I wouldn’t have such a bad DVD buying habit.
We fall asleep far too early for twenty somethings, both thoroughly exhausted.
Another busy day at work. I’ve agreed to stay late on Thursday, so I’m desperately trying to get everything ready for Friday so I can snooze through it. I have everything pretty much done, but by half three I’m yawning at my desk and setting off my friend. We both laugh at each other and head home as soon as we can.
I come home and skim through loads of blog posts about NaNoWriMo and lament about how I have no time to write 1667 words a day. It gets me thinking about my week, and where I could find the extra time. I can’t really. Every week is like this week – shouts in the night, shift clashes, extra work activities, gym sessions, not to mention battling with a nasty cold and, just occasionally, a free hour to put pen to paper (or you know, the closest modern equivalent). Today I write 1800 words. It is blog, not novel, but it’s still writing.
Finding the time is hard, but it can be done. So all you NaNoWriMos keep up the amazing work and good luck!