Typically, I have a very simple rule when it comes to TV. I watch it at the gym, and on planes. This is my secret trick for getting in lots of cardio.
Every so often, probably about once a year, I break this rule. Not with just one episode of Big Bang Theory whilst I eat dinner, but I get addicted to some TV series and watch it… whilst I have breakfast/catch up on Twitter/delete all my email in the morning. In the evening, at home, when I’d usually go out, write, or read a book. Over the weekend instead of going to an art gallery. Whilst I write unit tests. Whilst I try and fail to fix my website. Whilst I do anything that doesn’t require 100% of my attention. Sometimes I watch it and don’t even multitask. I destroy my sleep schedule staying up late, mindlessly clicking “next episode”. Somehow, it’s 2am and I don’t even know what happened.
Having run out of episodes, finally, I feel liberated from my addiction (I’m going to read BOOKS again!) but also strangely refreshed. Like I checked out of the real world for a little, to go and live in another, and have come back ready to face things. Like, where I should live. What I should do past the end of this year. Ready to start on the Scary Project at work, finish up That Side Project for reals – it’s tantalisingly close – and generally just start living life more fully again. Maybe even cut down on the cardio in favour of weights and yoga.
The truth is, I don’t like living in London. I have found it hard to adjust to the grey, to the size of the place (living in London, you can live in the same city as a friend and yet still be hours apart). Hard to handle the sense of loss I felt leaving Sydney, and also of failure. Because in an alternate reality, I was brave enough to go and have a different kind of adventure. Fed up and bitter about the tech industry, because whilst I’m having a good time in it right now that hasn’t always been the case, and isn’t the case for many other women I know. I’m tired of the casual misogyny, the rampant harassment, and the constant instance everything is egalitarian, nothing is gendered, and yet it just so happens that women are always the ones to suffer.
This was me, escaping from trying to be happy, because it’s been such hard work. And escaping, to just be absorbed in someone else’s story.
And now, I actually feel ready to have another go.