Floating Holiday


A tree at the turning point in the trail.

As a celebration of the so called “slow season” the Powers That Be at my company decided to give everybody a floating holiday- scheduled at the company’s discretion, during the month of June. The philosophy was that June was a month without any three day weekend, and since there wasn’t much need for the full cohort of employees at the beginnings or endings of the week that it would be a pleasant way to boost morale and show appreciation.

They were right.

My floating day was yesterday: June 3rd. It was a treat to have a weekday free that I could come and go as I pleased. I spend the whole day alone if I wished. I could run daytime errands when things weren’t crowded. I could get together with weekday friends: the ones whose jobs gave them the freedom to set their own schedules.

I could work on my novel.

I did my best to strike a balance: in the morning, while the gray skies of June gloom were still in effect, I went for an early morning run followed by a hike with a friend in Griffith Park. The landscape was green and hazy with mist as we clamored up the hills overlooking the 5 freeway and then wound our way back down through the grounds of the old zoo and past the shuttered dome of the merry-go-round.

It was enjoyable to break out of my loop and enjoy some new perspectives and some good conversation, but by the time I got home the sun was out and I was ready to stay in and enjoy some quiet comforts at home. I had some lunch and made myself a list: look up flights for a wedding coming up this summer, research dentist offices and make an appointment, look up the old file for my personal logo, file some more bills…

…work on my novel.

I had this fear that I would have this whole day to myself and that somehow I’d push of working on my writing. I actually did want to do it: I’d had a “Eureka moment” about the current chapter over the weekend and I was anxious to get it down on paper, but it was easy to push it off when there were other tasks that were more finite and more time sensitive. I compromised. I let myself write for forty minutes, then I took a break to work on something else. Then I wrote for another forty minutes. Rinse. Repeat. Progress was made. Other tasks were also crossed of the list.

As the afternoon began to wane, I headed out to therapy. I realized I didn’t have much in mind to talk about, and Aurelius commented that I seemed “lighter”. I certainly felt lighter- the tangled depression that had been tying me in knots for most of the last year finally seemed to be lifting. I could feel it in the house: the space felt happier, the backyard felt serene and orderly, the plantings were flourishing and I was finally making headway in my battle against the weeds and Bermuda grass. We’d entertained recently for the first time in months and everybody had had a good time. After months of feeling trapped in limbo, life felt like it was moving again. It felt like I had crossed some invisible tipping point and now things were beginning to fall into place with increasing speed and frequency. I felt optimistic about the future.

So all in all it was a good day and I’m now back at work feeling refreshed and motivated. With luck the feeling will continue to build.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on June 4, 2019.

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