Thinking things out

According to the news last night, there were heavy hailstorms in the north of the city, but where I am, south, by the bay, the sky was blue for most of the day and pretty to look at, and if it wasn’t warm exactly at least it wasn’t terribly cold, either. Today is different. It’s clouded over completely, and there’s a chill wind blowing, straight from the antarctic. It’s a day to stay indoors if you’re sensible.

I went walking to get some exercise and to think things out. I find walking helps me to clarify the thoughts swirling in my head. It gives me distance, and the motion seems to strip away the extraneous. My thoughts weren’t profound – I contemplated a chapter I was writing in my book and which way to go with it.

As it turned out, I didn’t think much about that. Instead, I looked about me, shaking my head at the dickhead who sped up the road and turned the corner without stopping; then, moments later, the courtesy between drivers as one pulled over to allow another to pass in a narrow street. I walked down by the church and back down towards the main shopping strip. Across the road was the vet I took rigby to.

Rigby is often in my dreams and regularly in my thoughts. It’s nice to remember him, but sad as well. He’s always a comforting presence in my dreams, devoted and caring. It’s like he’s there to represent something I need. I intend to get another dog at some point, but it has to be right. I got Rigby as a puppy, and we shared 13 years together. It may seem strange to say, but I don’t think anyone knew me as well as Rigby did. He got me. And I got him. He was my boy. I was his man. We were mates and lived in tandem.

I don’t want any dog; I want Rigby. That’s not possible, so the next best thing is to try and replicate the relationship with the right puppy. Unfortunately, dollars will come into it. I’m on the list for another chocolate Lab puppy but can’t afford it the way things are now.

In a week, I’ll be up in Mullumbimby visiting a friend, and a topic of consideration while I’m there is framing what the next five years look like for me. I need to figure out where I fit into things, what I want, and what I can manage. Hard decisions may need to be made, and I’m determined to set some lofty goals. Life beckons.

As always, some things become more apparent as time passes. Putting aside my health, which has generally declined since I stopped the hyperbaric treatment, there’s work and everything that leads off it.

During the week, I finally learned of the pay rise for this year – 2.5%. With CPI running at over 5.5% for the last year, it’s a modest increase and entirely unsurprising. I had tipped they wouldn’t give any more than 3%, but had to hit that mark to retain any integrity. They’ve fallen short, and it makes my decision clearer.

I’m paid a good $20-$30K less than what my role deserves, and if I hadn’t been ill and therefore basically helpless, I would have done something about it. They’ve put that on the table, and I figure that means I’m out of there once my long service leave becomes due. They may rue their cheapness, given no one else there has the knowledge I do, but then again, there’s every chance I’ll be offered a package before.

I’m assuming a return to near full health, which assumes a lot. I suspect there’ll be some things I’ll be unable to sustain in the years ahead, which means I need to tailor my expectations to my capabilities. This is what I hope to understand up north.

For now, I plug away. In a few minutes, I’ll begin working on that tricky chapter. I expect to be finished writing the book in the next fortnight. Then I’ll test the market. Who knows? Maybe that’s the way forward.

By the time I’d circled the block and returned home I had it all figured out. Hopefully, it’s as easy as that.

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