Okay, so the Dopey Happy wore off. In the last week I have experienced a full range of emotions both positive and negative. But nothing too extreme and nothing that I thought was worth blogging about.
Plenty of good stuff has been going on though.
Firstly, what you might call my Graded Exercise Therapy (although it's not official, it's just what I've decided to do) has got off to a good start. The plan is, to do a little bit of a walk each day, gradually increasing over the course of several months until I can walk what you might call "a useful distance". I'm letting myself off on days when it's raining (because I can't carry an umbrella) and if it gets icy, I won't go out then either for obvious reasons. But still. Phase One is to walk to the end of the road and back, once a day, a round trip of approximately 400 metres. It hurts, and it takes a while, and I have to stop to rest, and I feel awful when I get back to the house - but I'm doing it, and feeling quite proud of it. Once I'm definitely on top of doing that walk every day, and managing to stay on top of it for a couple of weeks, the next step will be going round the corner to the next corner of the block, making a 600m round trip. Once that's nailed, it'll be the post-box - 900m - and after that, completely round the block, which as far as we can work out, is a full kilometre.
Then, it'll only be another 200m on top of that, to get me all the way to the bus stop, which is my definition of "a useful distance". Unfortunately that last 200m is all uphill, so we could have upwards of a year to go before I swap my community transport membership for a bus pass. Still, like I say, Phase One is going well.
Secondly, the jumper I'm knitting - my first adult-sized one - is coming along nicely. I am only a couple of rows away from having the back piece finished. I think I should get it done tonight, and probably cast on for the front piece as well. As I suspected, I am on schedule to get it completed just as the weather gets a bit too warm to wear a jumper.
And thirdly, Access to Work. Since I bang on about all the trouble I have with these schemes, it's only fair that I should report when things go right.
The job I do has two major elements. There's the boring part, which is looking at the order someone has placed, picking the CDs they want off the shelves, scanning them to book them out of the stock, and printing off the paperwork. Then, there's the really totally insanely boring part, which is wrapping and packing each set of CDs and sticking the paperwork into a documents pocket on the package.
The packaging we use is this self adhesive corrugated card, with the hand press which squishes the layers of card together at either end of the package, sealing it. As you can probably imagine, it's rather difficult for me to use. I can do it once or twice quite easily, and I can do it five or six times without too many problems, but after about the tenth package, I can barely lift my arm any more, much less squish the card with the force required to seal it properly.
Of course, usually I'm not working alone, so I do the picking, and my fit, healthy and energetic CoWorker#1 does the packing. But there are two problems with this. Firstly, it's unfair on CoWorker#1 to always be doing the insanely boring physical part of the job. Even if he didn't complain, I would feel bad about it. And secondly, CoWorker#1 does sometimes get sick, or take holiday.
This might have been enough to make me turn around and say "okay. I can't do this job for four hours a day after all," except for The Machine. The Machine was sent to us on approval at about the same time as I arrived. It works much like a mangle. Two mechanical rollers spin, and you feed the end of the package through, and it squishes the card shut. No physical strength required. It means I can do as much of the "packaging" end of the job as they want me to do.
However, the approval period has come to an end. It's an expensive piece of kit, and I'm the only one who needs it - CoWorker#1 hates it (he just can't get the hang of it) and no one else does enough packing to have an opinion either way. In the words of The Boss, "so you find it useful... but is it really £severalhundred worth of useful? Because we don't exactly have that much money going spare."
Well, it's necessary for me to be able to perform all aspects of my job description. Enter Access To Work. There's a certain amount of paperwork to be done (isn't there always) but the advisor reckons we can get help with purchasing The Machine. I don't have to give up my job. CoWorker#1 doesn't get the nasty end of the stick regarding distribution of tasks. The Boss doesn't end up out of pocket. Everybody wins!