On stagnation

I know most of you will hate me for this (once again), but as August is drawing to a close, I am beginning to feel alive again. I say August and not the summer because in my beloved country summer refuses to let go, weeks after its contract has been terminated. I remember national holidays (on October 28th) where it was too hot to be wearing the long-sleeve shirts we were obliged to at our independence-day parade. 

August for me is the deadest month of the year, in every sense. It is too hot, too empty and too pretentious. It defines most people’s entire year in social media uploads, stories to tell and next year’s expectations. In Athens, the absence, of everything, is palpable. No traffic, no people, no noise, no breeze, no happiness for the ones that are ‘left behind’; those miserable prisoners of war. I too have been miserable for the past few weeks, but for very different reasons. I can’t seem to relate to anyone whose brainwaves resonate within this Augustine whirlpool of ‘last chance of the year to be free.’ 

‘So, where did you go?’ is the question du jour. 
‘Nowhere fast,’ is what I always think to myself.

For me, personally, it is both a blessing and a curse to be a teacher, but this, essentially jobless, August was a heavy burden on my shoulders. After an entire year, I had way too much time on my hands. The irony is that the more time I have, the less I actually accomplish. I am a particularly lazy individual, who is however driven and motivated by limited timeframes and strict deadlines. In essence, for me, there is nothing more productive than the last minute. When I have too much to do, I may whine, but I somehow do it all; when all 24 hours are free, I shut down or go on screen-saver mode and procrastinate to oblivion. Thank God for Netflix.

I recently told someone that I have never gone on a two-week vacation, and if I had I would probably have been bored after day 8 and missed home. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone look so shocked and offended. After a few days (I continued to his absolute horror) I would feel like a beast in a cage, as we say.

Crossing things off my to-do list gives me the same satisfaction as actually doing them. I should seek medical help, I know. I’ve heard it all before. I am abnormal. Well, la di da. Don’t misunderstand me, I probably whine about work as much as the next guy, but it’s unavoidable. We are creatures of habit, and nothing in life is more habitual than work and our grumbling thereof. 

But where was I? Oh yes, I was feeling better. Summer is stagnant, sweaty and slow; in essence, everything I despise, so as it is slowly starting to pack up its things, I instantly begin to take up the space it has so greedily been occupying. This veil of torpidity is being lifted and my sense are being reawakened one by one. My thoughts obediently take shape and escape the chaotic chimera of lethargy. 

There is a certain order to be found in disarray and I am now beginning to learn to dance around it.     

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