The glamorous* things keeping me sane now that home is work and work is home

Two sprays of Byredo cedar scent which takes me on a dreamy night out with my fiancee, even though I’ve only been to a bar once in five months. With each push of the metal cap I imagine a 20p piece jangling into a piggy bank, the price of each expensive squirt.

The smell of suncream applied in the morning, even when it’s cloudy outside. It never fails in fooling my brain that I’m at the beach. My only worry is that I might overpower the sun and sand association and permanently replace it with a memory of my bathroom, circa 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

Updating my savings spreadsheet. Opening all the tabs and totting up the changes in the stock market or the miserly interest is a very soothing ritual for me. Some nights I go to sleep thinking of my financial cushion. If you’re looking for mental peace, you don’t need meditation: you need a “fuck off” fund.

Doing the meter reading. You mean I have to go outside to do a task? Shall I get dressed up?

Rearranging my book shelves and rotating the books on my bedside table is so important. Want to escape the dishes? Better pick up some Cixin Liu and visit outer space. Frustrated with pandemic politics? Pick up Dark Money and get angry. I’ve been reading at a rate of knots ince I started putting the books that actually interest me within my eye line. Next up, Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall, which is soon to graduate from propping up the fan to my reading list.

As a fair skinned man, tanning is not top of the list of my abilities. Nevertheless, I’ve managed to develop a healthy cyclist’s tan with a very noticeable threshold on my legs from pasty to almost healthy looking. Maintaining it with regular rides is what counts for fun in 2020.

Apparently the key to keeping house plants alive is spending your entire life at home. All they need is water, sunlight and the occasional chat.

*actually utterly unglamorous, but you wouldn’t have clicked that.

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