May started out strong . . . and then I went on a four-day writing hiatus.

Tuesday, May 3rd:
My landlord had the bed bug detective dog come back to my apartment for a follow-up inspection after heat-treating my place back in March. I was hoping for an all-clear, but instead received a text that began with, “So the bad news is . . .” The good news was that the only piece of furniture the dog seemed concerned about was the spare, red mattress underneath my bed. I gave him permission to dispose of it–I had bought the mattress back when I had a studio apartment and no couch for guests–uninvited or welcome–to sleep on.

So I counted out getting a good night of sleep for the next three nights, and I cracked a beer open as soon as I got home for work before bussing over to my boyfriend’s to meet a friend of his for a movie night. We watched Jacob’s Ladder, which was a lot less scary than bed bugs.

Wednesday, May 4th: 
Because I had meant to write Tuesday night but didn’t, I decided I’d give myself Wednesday night off, too. Why? Well, I did finish 30 Days of Yoga! But really I gave myself Wednesday night off, and fuck it, why not Thursday, too? because I felt so damn defeated. I needed some fun in my life, so I made plans to go over to a friend’s after work, which involved a ten-minute walk to a bus stop downtown after work.

I LOVE walking. It’s one of my favorite things about city living. What I didn’t remember is that I don’t love downtown Seattle. I should have. I really should have. At lunch one of my co-workers was telling the tale of how just that morning she bear-maced some hateful Russian man at the train station, and I remarked on how little street harassment I’ve had to deal with since moving neighborhoods, from Pioneer Square to Fremont.

However, on this ten-minute walk, about 50-minutes removed from cleaning up a whole lot of child vomit, I had to deal with three too many man-children. The first asked me to smile–“just a little smile?” And then a block or two down, a man walking just behind but completely in-step with me remarked, “Damn, you’re really making me walk,” alerting me to the fact that he’d been following me for god-knows-how-long. Finally, there was another man who muttered I-don’t-know-what-nor-do-I-want-to as I slicked on some lipstick at the bus stop. Luckily, I only had to wait five minutes for the bus.

Then my friend and I ate all of the Thai food and I finally got to watch Mad Max: Fury Road.

Thursday, May 5th:
I took on an early shift–at first excited because that generally means also getting off early. Except we had a two-hour staff meeting, so it didn’t.

But at least I had an hour between when my shift ended and when the meeting began. Except that I ended up clocking out with only 50 minutes to spare.

So what did I do? I went speed-shopping for the sake of retail therapy. Because it’d been a long week and an even longer day. Somehow in twenty minutes I ended up with a more successful haul than I usually do after an entire day dedicated to buying clothes: four camisoles, three skirts, three pairs of socks, a romper, and a dress.

And you know what? I did feel better.

At least until I ate the dinner provided at the staff meeting–Qdoba, cilantro–and my lips swelled up and I had break into a First Aid kit and drink a child’s Benadryl.

After, my boyfriend picked me up, because commuting by car is almost always faster than commuting by bus, and he’s nice like that. And when I got into the car, I noticed it smelled like LUSH and I had to make sure I didn’t step on a giant paper bag at my feet, but I pretended not to notice until he said something. Because it turned out that he’d gone shopping, too. So now I also had bath bombs, beer, baked goods, and tea.

So I took an hour-and-a-half long bath, complete with a Twilight bath bomb–Lush’s “gentle, reassuring hug for the bath,” drank a beer, and watched Autism in Love on Netflix.

Friday, May 6th:
I planned on writing Friday night. I really did.

But . . . it was hot as hell in my apartment when I got home because while the day’s high only reached 77, my apartment’s temperature reached 140. I decided I should wait for it to cool off some. And then I decided I should probably do laundry. And return my library books. And have a cold drink. And a phone a friend from back home and talk for an hour. And reorganize my closet. No, not just my closet. My dresser drawers. Why should my sweaters take up residence in the top drawer when I won’t have reason to wear them again until November? So I emptied the entire contents of my dresser drawers onto my probably-bed-bug-free-bed and hit play on some Spotify playlist until I ran out of clothes to put away. And then I thought I ought to make some dinner, and what’s dinner without entertainment? So I put on an episode of The Secret Life of the American Teenager.

And that’s when I finally decided, fuck it, I’ll write tomorrow. (Which for the record, I did.)


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