Monday, March 21, 2011


At least temporarily. I have today and tomorrow off work.  I know it's only a few weeks since I had ten days off but honestly, within a week of being back at work I knew I needed to get away from it again.  My boss has been particularly obnoxious, so much so that last week I actually even went to chat to one of the members of our Betriebsrat (workers' council - every company in Germany with more than 5 employees is supposed to have one).  I don't want to actually start any official proceedings against him with HR (yet) but wanted to at least have officially spoken to somebody about his bullying. 

At any rate, after being back for about a week I got a note in my door at home that the annual gas boiler maintenance would take place on 22 March.  Since that's a Tuesday and coming just after the weekend of my choir concert (which was yesterday, Bach meets Mozart, a Bach cantate followed by Mozart's Requiem - good concert although we alto were not very strong on two important entries, which we will undoubtedly hear about next time we see our conductor), I decided to try and just take the two days and make a long weekend of it.

I organised an appointment with my ear, nose and throat doctor as hay-fever symptoms seem to have kicked in a couple of weeks ago.  It's far to early for birch pollen (which is what I have a reaction to) but I had forgotten about cross-indications and apparently hazelnut is blooming now and that's probably what's making my eyes itch (am I the only perosn in the world that gets DRY itchy eyes with their hayfever rather than streaming tears, itchy eyes?).  That appointment was first thing this morning so for the first time in a couple of weeks I feel far more clear-headed and have a prescription for more nose-spray which will keep me going for a few months.  I also found out that that doctor is retiring at the end of the month.  Such a pity (well, for me anyway, he's very happy about it).  It's hard enough to find doctors with a nice manner who don't mess you around and for the most part I have so far been lucky in Germany so hopefully the guy who is taking over his practice will be okay too.

I also popped into the bank to move the last of the money from my savings account to my current account.  My refund from the health insurance hasn't come in yet and a direct debit is due to come out at the end of the week so although it leaves me with more or less no money at least I know that it's covered now.

So with my essential chores out of the way I now have the freedom to decide what to do for the rest of the day.  More chores (fairly essential ones but having ignored them for this long, another day won't make any difference) or just head outside into the fabulous blue skies and sunshine we have today.  Hmmm.  Tough decision.

I've just had some lovely toast for lunch and I have some mashed potatoes that are going to be made into potato cakes later on with some onion and the last of the bacon bits.  I've taken some chinese cabbage and some pastry out of the freezer and will get some eggs while I'm out to make a quiche later.  I also want to try out a side-dish mentioned in the comments of a food waste friday post on The Mrs' blog - using up older bread as croutons, mixing them with tinned tomatoes and baking with some grated cheese on top.  So I took some slices of bread out of the freezer and will be trying to cut them and the remains of the pumpkin bread I bought last week but didn't quite finish up to make croutons and maybe have that along with my potato cakes later.

I'm so enjoying my day off even though I haven't really done a lot yet.  It's one of those days which makes me feel like perhaps I'm not one of those people who is really designed to be at their best in paid employment.  Mind you, are any of us designed that way?

Edited to add: coincidentally I've just stumbled across an interview with Kenny Rogers where he said that one thing his mother told him was "Find a job you love and you'll never work a day in your life".  Wise words.

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