A few weeks ago, a friend of mine (who adamantly opposed my leaving New York/moving to England) left a poignant message on my Facebook page:
"Don't forget, lovie: wherever you go, there you are. Watch and listen closely for any repetitive speech or behaviour or situation to make sure that all the frustrations you left behind (and behind and behind) are truly location-specific detritus and not stuff you're carrying around with you."
On days like today, I wonder if he’s right. I am just shy of the “2 months in” point, and I have fallen into chaos. I've mentioned the broken tooth – while eating popcorn of all things! – and “the cold,” and the resulting desire for Tylenol. Well, now, all hell has broken loose!
The cold, turned into a cough, and last night the cough triggered what felt like the onset of an asthma attack – I've had one of these before, not something I’d like to repeat – the D.E.B. dutifully rushed me to Warwick Hospital, where I was seen—within half an hour I might add—by the “Out of Hours G.P. (General Practitioner)” at the Extended Hours Service Centre. No camping out in a messy, noisy, germ-riddled Emergency Room here, thank you very much. The doctor was very helpful, patient, and cute. But I digress.
It turns out that:
a.) my allergies have gone hay-wire, triggering my asthma, which has been relatively dormant while I was living in New York;
b.) the “ringing in my ears” is the result of a ruptured ear drum (!?!), caused by an ear infection I didn’t realize I'd had,
c.) I have a cold.
Dare I ask the heavens, “What else?”
So, here I lie, on a beautiful, Thursday morning, in bed. When I could/should be up and out in my new world: morning prayer at St. Peter’s, walking Lucy across the Barford playing field, taking my body for my 5K loop to Sherbourne and back, &etc.
And of course, our bodies pick the worse possible timing when it comes to being ill. I have a long week ahead. Tonight, the D.E.B. and I have tickets to see David Tennant (the current Dr. Who) in Love’s Labours Lost at the RSC. These tickets are GOLD DUST! We have fabulous seats—thanks to my connections at the Shakespeare Trust—and there I shall be, hacking away, trying not to bring up a lung in the front row. Brilliant.
Today is also the day when I should be making an appearance at The Shakespeare Institute, at the weekly “Thursday Seminar,” a.k.a. weekly “Shakespeare Schmooze Fest.” Tomorrow night, the D.E.B. and I are carousing with friends at a culinary event, “Claridge’s Night,” at Stratford College. What a joy my fellow diners will have with me sputtering over their foie gras.
Festivities continue through the weekend. Sunday, D.E.B. is performing at a charity event in Warwick (He is a darling, truly.) and in the evening we are going to see American folk diva, Diane Ponzio in concert in Stratford.
I am grateful to have such an active and full social life. And I am even more grateful that the D.E.B. has friends that are actually, really wonderful, and whom I actually, really, honestly like and enjoy!
My stress and angst are down to my own poor planning. I am scheduled to give two, separate, Shakespeare lectures in Stratford next week on Tuesday and Thursday. I have known about both of them for quite some time. Am I prepared? Am I ready?
I think the word Gordon Ramsay uses is “shambolic.” If “procrastination” were a country, I would be its Queen. My upcoming lecture at The Shakespeare Institute next week is only the most significant lecture of my academic career. Why not wait until the week before to flip out, and panic about it? Oh, yeah. And then, get sick.
Perhaps, some things don’t change, no matter where you are.