When I say it was warm and sunny today, I don’t mean it was warm and sunny like, say, Greece. But it was warm and sunny like Bristol on a beautiful cloud-free spring day. For the first time in a very long time, loafing around in the back garden with a good book and endless cups of tea (and so endless bathroom visits) life was normal again.
In the last week or so, with COVID numbers going through the floor, I have been to the pub, been shopping, played golf and been somewhere different on more than one occasion. And although the sun is always high in the sky, in England you can’t always see it. You can’t miss the bugger today.
If you are, like me, a mental basket case, days like these are what makes life worth living. It’s why I don’t completely give up on life and where I do listen to my friends who tell me, with Captain Tom-like certainty, tomorrow will be a better day. And even with my usual half-empty glass, now I’m gonna believe them.
A few short weeks ago, I was close to, if not at, the end of my tether. Various versions of lockdown since March of last year had made every day exactly the same as the one that preceded it. Normally, a stickler for routine, routine itself became corrosive to my spirit, probably because it was someone else’s routine that had been imposed on me. Today, admittedly still pumped full of antidepressants, the world to me seems, perhaps briefly, a better place.
I have been here before. The good times roll and I start making plans. I dare to dream, I started to get, perish the thought, confident in my ability to change my life and then the dream, like West Ham, fades and dies. I am sure, because underneath this happiness lies actual illness, that the good days won’t last forever. But for tonight, I am going to pretend they will last at least until next week, that I will finish my latest book, finally find professional fulfilment, break a hundred in a round of golf and so kick away this mangey black dog.
I can honestly say that I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else today. Even my local boozer has reopened, as if to say, “You’re right: things are getting better.” If I can sort out my iTunes (thanks Apple, for making it SO fucking complicated) Captain Tom might have been onto something after all.