Monday, April 27, 2009

DIARY 104 - The Finishing Touch

The final handover to my replacement draws nearer (May 1st- Hurrah!!!) I've devised a Handover Ceremony, which will take place in the context of a Sevenfold Puja. This week I've handed over what might flatteringly be called my 'managerial portfolio'. My daily in-tray is pretty empty most of the time now, so at any hour of the day I can frequently teeter on the edge of tedium, without fully embracing or toppling over into it. Fending off boredom can become soooo utterly- utterly- exhausting. Staying in the present moment, and not looking forward to a time of future release, can be made more difficult when that present moment is as dull as ditch water.

The beginning of last week, though it was all too familiar, was just taxing. With one member of staff on leave, and one suddenly off ill - 'we two left together clinging' - were - I believe the common parlance is - 'holding our shit together' - but only just. It may objectively have been no busier than usual, but subjectively, it did feel a more severe strain than I felt happy to accommodate. This is just how it frequently is in Customer Services - its one of the things, by stepping down, that I want to get away from. By the time the 'ailing one' in my team did return on the Tuesday, it seemed every cranky, confusing, uncooperative customer we have on our books, was ringing up to place orders, or chase up a delivery. In the run up to a Bank Holiday, there are often such mad stampedes the week before. Through the unique eyes and pressures of the moment it seemed worse than usual. I handled it all OK on the surface,though I was finding myself handling a side of my psyche that's a trifle crotchety and intolerant. The underlying state was bedraggled with ragged edges - my mental states weren't always saintly. As the weeks pass, frustrated impatience, if not weariness, is becoming an increasing trend I need to remain aware of. I never realised before that simply waiting could be so tiring. I've not been sleeping soundly, and I'm not sleeping soundly because I'm unsettled, and I'm unsettled because I've been waiting to step down from being Customer Services Manager for eleven weeks. Still only another six weeks to go - six weeks ! Agggh !! calamity!!! - why did I agree to this? Because I was considering other peoples needs, and prioritising them before my own. So I have only myself to chastise on this one. If my rewards are not be in heaven, I want to know where they are - right now!!

I appear to have survived relatively unscarred by the last three weeks without David. Two weeks absence away on retreat is quite normal, but by next week he'll be clocking in his first month in Ghuyaloka. Many people have asked how I'm doing without him, and generally I'd say I'm OK. I'm not the moping type, at least never for long. I'm keeping myself busy, I have a number of creative things to be getting on with, and friends to meet up with. Obviously, I do miss him not being around,if only to share thoughts, confidences and experiences. I notice it most in the little rituals, the things we invariable do together, where it doesn't seem quite the same when ones doing it on ones tod. I have yet to find myself clawing at his picture and tearing open my shirt in wailing desperation, at least not yet. I've a very convenient way to manage the lack of sex - if you get my meaning. Given time, perhaps by the last month of his course in July, I might be clambering like a mad baboon looking for sight of him. Who knows?.

I've almost completed my first 'seed syllable' picture, the Ratnasambhavsa one I'm doing for Paco. I did his first because he isn't staying the full four months in Ghuyaloka, he's back at the beginning of July. Though in the end its come out quite well, there was one tense moment on Saturday. I'd bought some gold leaf paint to outline a lotus design. I'd shake the bottle to make sure the golden bits were suspended well, I'd turn away to paint a few brush strokes, but by the time my brush and I returned to the pot the gold would have separated out again. I was shaking, stirring and painting repeatedly all afternoon. This unsatisfactory process, didn't help in producing a result I was entirely happy with, but its now so bedecked with jewels no one else will notice a slightly blotchy wobbly edged paint finish. Only I will know and continue to be creatively aggrieved by it, should I allow myself to be. Learning to be creative in my responses to imperfection has been a cutting edge in my practice for many many years.

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