Eaely to rise, fairly late to bed

Today La Serpiente demanded to wear her raincoat to school, a somewhat quixotic choice, given it’s designed for the cold rains of England, not the tropics. Still, by careful use of air conditioned spaces we made it to her school without her fainting from the heat, and a general lack of lollygagging meant she got a pain au chocolat to eat into the bargain. Getting her to take off her coat was hard, but that done I climbed aboard a rental bicycle and went to the station. It never rained.

This evening, I got home early (I had a meeting over the road from our flat) and everyone else was out, so I made the most of the opportunity by … checking emails. It certainly is an exciting life that I lead.

This evening though, after Destroyer had curled up and gone to sleep in my armpit, I got myself out for a run, the first since my abortive attempt on Saturday. I only made two miles, but I’m being cautious; I was only at the physio yesterday, after all, and not ready to undo all the hard work immediately. Even so, my legs were incredibly sore when I got home. Today, two miles. Tomorrow, swimming (and I’d forgotten to launder my swimming gear since Vietnam) and then fifty miles after that, I suppose. That will ease me back in gently.

Last night I could only sleep on the sofa, and only for a few hours (early morning phone calls are the worstest). Tonight, I sleep.

Yet more sleep deprivation

I couldn’t sleep last night, tossing and turning until 1am, and then woken by a crying child at 2, or at 5:30, or I don’t know quite when. I just remember waking up on Destroyer’s bed at 7:15, desperate to go back to sleep, and not being able to because I had an early morning phone call to get up and attend to.

When that was done, I put La Serpiente in a taxi (for we were running late) and took her to school. She coughed all the way. I got on a hire bicycle and rode to the station, took the MRT to work, and a few hours later got the glad news from my wife that La Serpiente had coughed and coughed until she was sick, and had gone home with a fever. Bad dad. Why did I take her to school?

I had my penance: a visit to the dentist to get a cavity filled. My dentist is very nice but seems very nervous whenever she talks to me. She has a fine bedside manner with La Serpiente, as I discovered last time we visited for a checkup, and is fine with my wife, but seems terribly concerned when she’s talking to me. Perhaps my enormous beard intimidates her. Maybe she’s worried that upon hearing the bad news about the state of my mouth, I’ll fly off the end of my handle and rage around the surgery. Or probably I’m just reading too much into this.

It was a small cavity but inconveniently positioned, so I had an hour of reclining in the chair, while she drilled and filled and polished, and I watched Mission Impossible 3. I don’t think seeing people getting shot is actually that helpful a distraction from the stress of having your mouth operated on, but then I’m not a qualified dentist. Afterwards, a little sore and numbed of face, I went back to the office and got moody with spreadsheets until 6, when I went home to my feverish child.

Destroyer was making the most of it by also watching TV, and she’s not even sick. I should have set her to some chores but it was far easier to have both kids rest their heads on me and watch penguins in Antarctica.

We put them to bed. I took an hour to get Destroyer down, or rather I woke up after an hour to find I’d failed and she was still awake and demanding bandaids for her knee, so I left and brought in my wife, and then she fell asleep on Destroyer’s bed instead.

Oh, what a night. Hopefully we’ll all be rested by tomorrow.

Brain fade

I slept well this evening. Mainly because I fell asleep next to La Serpiente at 8:20 and didn’t wake up for an hour. I crawled groggily from her room just as my wife exited Destroyer’s room. She went to do the dishes and I fiddled around with some code where I’d spent all day failing to make it work, because I’d typed one incorrect character. That’s the thing, it’s hard to debug code when you only have a 27″ inch screen in an ergonomic environment, rather than being hunched over a laptop in a dim living room.

That thing solved, we settled down to watch the last two episodes of the third season of Game of Thrones, which has some revoltingly gory stuff going on, and a man eating a sausage in front of the guy he’s just castrated, which is more than a little insensitive. There’s also people shot with arrows, stabbed, stabbed some more, … There’s lots of stabbery. No sexual violence for an episode or two, which I assume means season 4 will start with a bumper load of it.

I was meant to go running tonight rather than watch violent TV, but I was fairly exhausted. Tomorrow will be better, I promise. Or at least I won’t have a stomach that’s doing somersaults. But for now, just silence.

Not Swimming Lesson #1

Tonight I didn’t go swimming, and I was still so tired that I fell asleep on Destroyer’s bed before she did, which suggests that maybe it’s not swimming that knackers me out, it’s Thursdays. That’s aggravating because I don’t reasonably expect to improve at Thursdays, so all those lessons may be for naught, but it’s consoling insofar as it explains why I’m tired after every single swimming lesson.

I’m not swimming this week (or the next) because I only paid for ten lessons, and this week and next week I’m frantically busy or out of the country, so this pause to take stock makes a lot of sense. But the marathon training schedule marches on, and so only after I’d dragged myself out of Destroyer’s bedroom, and wasted most of the evening watching videos on YouTube or Netflix, did I finally get changed into my running gear and headed out.

It wasn’t a wonderful run; 2km down to the foot of Mount Faber, and 2km back, but it was at an even pace and I wasn’t reduced to terrifying weeping at the end of it, like I was in March. So there’s that to say for it.

It wasn’t a very good day for training though; lots of rushing about (two client meetings, both 500 yards from my house, but interspersed with returns to the office which meant I’d walked 12,000 steps today before I even contemplated ‘proper’ exercise. Then there was the can of Coke I shouldn’t have drunk, the quesadilla for lunch that keep threatening to repeat on me during my run (surely the statute of limitation for lunch shouldn’t allow for gastric distress almost ten hours after you’ve eaten the thing?) the ill-advised ice cream mid afternoon… Once again, I think I’ll put on weight while training for this marathon, which doesn’t suggest the best dietary plans.

Oh, it’s all muscle I’m adding. Honest. Stomach muscle.

Now, though, I smell of rotting apples. So at least my sweat is healthy. I hope.

Early night

La Serpiente was very tired when I got home tonight, and howled with unhappiness when I told her I would be away on a work trip. “No, you can’t go on holiday” she wailed at me, before my wife pointed out work trips aren’t holidays. It’s nice to get backed up on this.

Her fatigue continued into bathtime, when a disagreement over who got to play with a little rubber dolphin ended with Destroyer burbling quite cheerfully as La Serpiente wept years of inchoate rage.

All of which meant I read her one book, turned out the light and she was asleep by ten past eight, the earliest she’s been to bed in months if not years. I celebrated by going out for a very slow 40 minute run, my legs still sore from yesterday.

Today was not so tiring for me. I had a morning packed with meetings (some productive, some where I sat there wondering if my brain was utterly broken or if the topics were utterly otiose) and ate too much garbage, but I hope the run and not eating after ten o’clock (we exhausted our supply of cheesy poofs last night) mean I’ll wake up tomorrow feeling slim and svelte. My arms are completely ruined, but I don’t know if that’s just because I’m tired or I hurt myself picking up La Serpiente today. Everything will be right in the morning, right?

Not drinking gin

After work I ran to the National Stadium, but somehow took a wrong turning and went out of my way by most of a mile, which wouldn’t be so odd if I hadn’t been running the same route so often for the last six months. When I got to the track, I had to run a 30 minute time trial: lap after lap of the track, after which I had the happy news that my threshold power is almost 10% higher than the last time I tried to estimate it. Which is possibly bad news, as it means I should up my intensity from now on.

I got the train home, feeling sweaty and exhausted, to find my wife and a friend of hers drinking gin. My dear, precious gin. The girls were both being loony and so as the only sober adult I ended up trying to get them both to sleep. Apart from histrionics (“I love you so much you can’t leave!”) from La Serpiente, which lasted until I’d prised myself off her bed and left the room, the bigger challenge was Destroyer, who wiggled and demanded milk and Chicka Chicka Boom Boom and to sit on me and to talk about breakfast until 10pm, while I was desperate to go and have a shower, or eat some cake, or just recover from my run.

Instead of which I got to be sweary when I finally got out of the girls’ rooms, and then I ate a bag of cheesy poofs because I’m so serious about getting down to my racing weight, and so on and so forth until I was in bed. Tomorrow, I’m sure I’ll be more rational.

Game of Thrones Season 2

Tonight we finished watching the second season of Game of Thrones. The penultimate episode was almost comic in the number of decapitations, people getting masonry dropped on their head or their legs being chopped off with axes. Not to mention bright green wildfire (Wildfire was also the name of a Germanic pizza chain in Hong Kong – I don’t know if that’s still in business or not).

However, most of the people dying in the episode you don’t care about, because they’re just random blokes with helmets on. They saved all the proper deaths for the last episode, when Finch from The Office runs some poor sod through with a spear (I won’t say who just in case somebody is even further behind than me with this series – although spoiler alert : everyone you might even care about dies eventually).

All the dour Northerners, plus the schoolmarmish Brianne of Tarth, are jolly entertaining. The bald bloke off The Crystal Maze dies far too soon and yet Joffrey gets not a scratch on him; there’s no justice in this world, that’s for sure. But after watching 20 episodes (what’s that, almost 15 hours of grim, shitsprayed misery?) in less than two weeks, I think we need to pause for a moment and find something more cheerful in life. Also, I need more sleep.