I’m writing from the seat of exhaustion – where exhaustion starts, ends, and returns to. I am there, literally and metaphorically. My body’s aversion to gravity, while never very strong, is weaker today than is typical. It feels as though my skin is sinking off my bones, seeking its angle of repose: a horizontal pool of Kat on the ground.
This deep weariness is rooted, as weariness often is, in imbalance. My scales have weighted heavily towards work in recent weeks, but that alone wouldn’t have brought me to this place. It was the relentless pursuit of fun, on top of the imbalanced work, that has brought me here.
Last night I stood in an outdoor amphitheater in my polka-dotted work dress, sipping Bundy and coke and listening to Mumford & Sons. It was a little bittersweet as I had bought the tickets as a surprise for Rick, but knowing his work schedule can be so unforgiving, I told him in advance of the show so he could plan to be here. Nonetheless, this week came around, and he was unavoidably stuck in Cunnamulla, Queensland drilling holes in the ground while I was left quietly singing the words to songs that have been a recurring soundtrack for the last few years of my life, surrounded by masses of that unique brand of concert-goer who stands, arms crossed, face stern, assessing a show through thick-rimmed glasses, rather than enjoying it.
That’s not to say the show wasn’t fun – it was lovely. My feet in the grass of the outdoor amphitheater, my friend Krystle laughing with me at the stodginess of the crowd, my heart cascading up and around the crescendos of banjo and lyrical whirligigs. It was beautiful. When the show ended, Krystle and I retired to her apartment and drank guava drinks and chatted into the night, before I teetered back to my yellow steed and let her guide me home through the night. I bumbled around my house, exhausted, watering plants and cooking eggs as I had skipped dinner, and then collapsed into my bed for a few brief hours.
This morning, as they do, the birds began to squawk. . . at 4:30. It’s hard to emphasize enough how god awful the caterwaul of the avian beings here really is. It’s like they were put on Earth to destroy peace and happiness, and instead, replace it with a persistent rage that the laws of evolution denied this continent a branch of the Felidae tree. Please, someone import a tiger up in here to shut these birds up!
But, the beauty of being awake at the crack of dawn is the chance to enjoy the crack of dawn. I have been doing a lot of enjoying it, recently. I wake up and immediately head (pajama clad) to the porch where I uncover all my plants from the blankets and grocery bags that I use each night to protect them from possum teeth. I then wander down the steps to the garden I cleared in front of the house and water my seedlings, beans, and the native garden that I put on top of the hill where it’s dry. It’s a pleasant way to start the morning, dwelling barefoot in dark loamy soil of the garden, assessing the growth of my little shoots and stalks and trying to figure out how the whole thing works. I can’t wait until Rick finishes building my greenhouse in the back where I can keep them protected.
And with that description, it seems the exhaustion has finally caught up with me. I didn’t even get a chance to talk about our surprise surfing trip last weekend or the beach, or the debates, or anything else I’d hoped to touch on. So, we’ll have to hope I have the stamina next go round.