annanotbob2's Diaryland Diary


My beautiful laundrette

Full of anxiety, but trying to watch it as if from a distance, rather than becoming engulfed by it, and to keep open the possibility of enjoyable moments bursting through.

I took my dirty clothes down the laundrette for a service wash. Brilliant. You hand over your bag of washing and the cost of doing it yourself, plus less than the cost of a cup of coffee. You come back a few hours later and collect a bag of folded, clean dry clothes. It's two minutes from my door - what's not to love? I was a bit stoned and cheerful when I picked it up and full of the wonder of not having to do it myself, so I said to the woman, "Thank you so much - it's brilliant to be able to not do it sometimes. Thanks." She coloured right up and blurted out, "No one's ever said that before!" Shocking.

Of course, what I might have done was phone the landlord and tell him the washing machine in the flat is broken. And that although since boiler-repair-man's last visit the heating has had a perfect record, the hot water is fucking about like a bastard and the fences in the back yard are all falling down because they are rotten and have reached the end. But I can't call because I want to ask him to extend my tenancy, not make me pay six months in advance, and not make my poor sister act as guarantor as the paperwork is a nightmare and I'm fifty-seven years old for fuck's sake. But I can't bear the thought of what I'll have to do if he says no - though why would he say no? Admittedly I am smoking in here, but I also have log fires and that's the smell that hits you when you come in (I ask every non-smoker who passes the threshold - they're quite bored of it now).

It's not a logical response to the situation, it's emotional and inappropriate. I can break it down and see that it's bollocks. I can change the way I think about it, which changes the way I feel about it, but only late at night, when there's no chance of actually having to make the phone call. During the day it just makes me feel sick and start shaking and crying so that after a few attempts at talking myself down (attempts that don't get further than 'come on' before the panic screams 'NO!', so this takes a while), I can only distract myself and get no further forward.

I'm getting sneaky with this old mental health crapola though. I distract myself with doing things I thought I couldn't do, but are better than phoning the landlord, like cleaning the kitchen up a bit, which all helps towards feeling like a proper person. A person who's entitled to live in a nice flat and go to Florence.

If I hadn't been this anxious before every trip I've ever been on, I'd be anxious about the trip itself. But I know that I always have a good time. I don't have any clear expectations or desires - being with Bluey in Florence works for me, whatever else comes along.

I got my Euros today, and some writing pens. Ain't no stoppin me now.

Ciao, bellas xxx

12:14 a.m. - 21.04.12


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