the corner office

a blog, by Colin Pretorius

Catching up

So, what's happened since 2021?

I was never happy with how flippant I was in my final post about finishing my Masters. "project that doesn't suck". "another piece of paper". In-jokes for me, but probably nobody else. I'd said the two years had been heavy going, but finishing the research project turned into an even heavier three months as I rushed to get it all done. But in the end, I handed it in, and it was all over, me vowing I'd never put myself through that again, burned out, but free.

And then it was Ronwen's turn to go back to university, and my academic efforts since have been largely self-driven, when they've been driven at all.

Beyond that, I got COVID. And again. And again. Each experience was slightly different, but entirely horrible, and well over a year after my last (officially tested) bout of the disease, I still don't feel like I've fully recovered. It's been getting better since January, but it was quite sobering. Was this just me recovering from COVID, had I just lost that much fitness, or was I getting old?

Speaking of which, I turned 50 (and then 51). Turning 50 was ... a birthday, much like any other, except with more navel-gazing. I joke that I had my mid-life crisis in my 20s, and that wasn't pretty. I don't know whether I'm allowed another one. But either way, I'm now a 50-something. Mortality beckons, but youth still taunts from afar.

As of a couple of months back, my eldest is now taller than me. Maybe there's something to drinking lots of milk, after all. I perceive a subtle shift in the dynamics in our house. He'll stand next to me occasionally, I think just... enjoying it.

I returned to South Africa for the first time since we left in 2006. It was good to be there again, although it left me with mixed feelings. It was also a reminder that South African childhood, even now, is different to UK childhood, and I was glad that our boys got to experience something of it. We decided that they (and perhaps just a little less frequently, me) will be back more often, and for longer.

And finally, our eldest has been home-schooled for years, and as of last year, our youngest is, too. (Downsides: few, if you don't value free time. Upsides: off-season holidays. See previous paragraph).

{2024.03.20 05:10}

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