Hurray for deadlines! They hang over you and make you put off the procrastination for another day and actually get down to work. And not only that, you feel so good when you meet them and even better when you’ve met them and moved on.
I’ve been translating a very long thesis for the last five months, and it had to be in by the end of September. I made it, and I finally feel as if I’ve got my life back. Maybe I can even get back to a bit of blogging now, instead of slogging.
One way and another the summer was a bit of a dead loss this year. It was too bloody hot for a start. I mean, I like the sun, but 42º C is pushing it a bit in my opinion. Then they didn’t open the village swimming pool until 1st August to save having to pay a lifeguard in July. I was down there like a shot on the 1st to cool off and lounge on the fake grass for a bit.
It’s just as well I was quick off the mark, because on the 2nd the pool sprang a leak and all the water drained out. So much for my plan to go down for an hour every afternoon. The pool was only built three years ago, and there are conflicting accounts circulating about whether it was the alcalde, the local plumber or the construction company to blame for the chapuza. But the builders have gone out of business, so that might be a clue. Whatever. It wasn’t fixed and that was that. No pool for the hottest summer in living memory.
So I moved myself downstairs to the old part of the house where it’s cooler and closed the shutters during the day and opened them at night. I felt like a mole. Or possibly Dracula, hunched over my laptop. But at least I could get on with the thesis with nice cool tiles under my bare feet. Although the noise from outside was a bit of a distraction.
For some unknown reason the powers that be – in this case the provincial government in Alicante – decided that August was just the month to fix the church. Quite why this was so high up their list of priorities in the present economic climate I haven’t managed to fathom. So we had sandblasting machinery going on for several hours a day, plus what sounded like scaffolding being dropped from a great height and the builders’ radio going full blast. Not to mention (but I will) the clouds of dust produced in the process, which seemed to get into everything.
So I was glad when August came to an end and we quietly slid into September. And I’m even gladder now I’ve finished the thesis. Although I know if no translations appear in the next couple of days I shall start worrying about whether that’s it, I’m washed up and nobody’ll send me any work ever again.
I am glad I am not the only one who struggled to work in the Iberian summer. I feel almost normal again now that we have had a few miserable wet days heralding the winter in the Algarve, Portugal.
It’s been raining here too. Means I don’t need to feel guilty for being holed up in my office. Sometimes I even do some work while I’m here…