18 April 2009

All these things that I've done

Back in Dublin after an amazing few days in Helsinki, catching up with fantastic friends and our amazing godson. He's now almost two and really starting to talk, but of course its all in Finnish, so I have no real idea what are real words and what are just Finnish-sounding gibberish. Also, as my Finnish is non-existent, I spoke in English pretty constantly to him just to confuse him all the more, just as he's starting to get the hang of this talking thing.

"What's that you say? This thing is called "cheese"? But yesterday you told me it was "leipäjuusto", make up your mind you stupid moose".

Yes, the internal monologue of all babies sounds like Stewie Griffin, even in Finnish.

It was thus while basking in the afterglow of a week of sumptuous Suomi hospitality that I completely failed to notice an important anniversary creep up and then defiantly pass me by, for Thursday was in fact the one year anniversary of my graceful transition to the world of underemployment.

There were those who said I would crack under the lack of strain and constant stress, overdose on the luxuriant freedom afforded to me by an almost complete lack of obligations and responsibilities, and loose touch with the common man who remains oppressed under the unrelenting yoke of the global corporate machine. To all these naysayers, doom-mongers and more, I say 'Feh! A pox on your doubting houses!"

And what exactly do I have to show for these last twelve months? A lot of international travel, apparently:
April 2008 - London & BangFace festival, Camber, England
May 2008 - San Marco di Castellabate, Italy
June 2008 - Pezinok & Bratislava, Slovakia
July 2008 - Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
August 2008 - Mexico City & San Cristobal Des Las Casas, Mexico; Caye Caulker, Belize; San Francisco, CA & Burning Man, Black Rock City Nevada
September 2008 - Donner Pass State Park & San Francisco, CA
January 2009 - Belfast; Washington DC, New York, New Haven, CT
March 2009 - Belfast; Brno, Czech Republic
April 2009 - Pezinok & Bratislava, Slovakia; Vienna, Austria; Tampere & Helsinki, Finland
Looks like I need to get measured up for a new Carbon Footprint.

When I left work I had put together a monthly budget that would allow me to take a minimum of 18 months off, and surprisingly in spite of the ridiculous amount of travel I actually came in pretty much exactly on budget. This says to me that if I cut back even just a little on unnecessary perambulations I should be able to stretch out this happy period of underemployment just a bit longer and possibly sleep through the recession.

But beyond the travel and the hiding under the bed-covers from the reality of the global depression, what else do I have to show for the last twelve months? About half a stone less in weight and a blood pressure down to a very respectable 128/72.

This, beyond the new experiences and reconnections with old friends, beyond the time spent with family or exploring new avenues of creativity, beyond the opportunity to be a part of history on a global stage and to be part of the life of an individual child, I would say that the restoration of my health and well-being has been the most significant accomplishment of the last twelve months.

Actually it is not beyond these experiences, rather it is because of them that I have rediscovered myself.

Every event in the last twelve months has been a key that unlocked another part of the real Me, the Me once buried deep that had sacrificed too much of my sense of self for external goals that now seem difficult to even fathom.

To everyone that has been a part of this voyage of rediscovery, thank you!

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At 5:37 am, Blogger Tadhg said...

Better health and better sense of self sound to me like pretty damn good achievements for the time off.

Time and money well-spent, I say.

At 7:36 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hah! Foulnd your blog! Toivo is still asking for 'Lei' and 'Shasho'..


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