All entries for Friday 27 May 2005

May 27, 2005

Hot day: instant autobiography

With a sigh I grab the roll, peel out another chocolate biscuit, sigh deeply again. It’s a hot day today, and even though I’m sitting at my desk, probably relatively the house’s coolest space, I can’t focus because of it. I spend the whole day reading Wahrman’s views on the construction of the English middle class around the 1820s-30s.

But I read slowly, extremely slowly with regular intervals of distraction: the guitar behind me, the Groene Amsterdammer (Green Amsterdammer, a Dutch opinion magazine) right beside the “Gender, Class and Empire” module core texts – with much more interesting and up-to-date debate: much on what the Netherlands is going to do in five days: ditch the European constitution (most likely) or accept it? And, of course, the internet, our time’s greatest chaos and biggest distractor. On a day like this, I can check my email over five times a day, up to ten. Today, I receive the happy news that my brother has finally met all requirements of his masters course of law, so that nothing stands in the way of his official appointment as a master in law. Soon, he’ll be heading over to Bolivia, to do volunteering work at an NGO in Riberalta (see also my Campesinos project page, although it’s no longer updated). Oh, plus, I book a flight for my dad to come in and help me move out the last days of this term. Flying directly from Amsterdam to Coventry. It’s one of these feats ascribed to the globalised world.

At four James, Thomas and me go for a jog in the burning sun. Some flatmates and neighbours sit outside in the sun, but Thom’s picked up the crazy idea of improving our 25-minutes record (on an approximate 5 km) down to 20 minutes. Why now, why today? I haven’t jogged for around, maybe over a week. That record’s not gonna happen. And indeed I’m dead exhausted by the first turn already. It’s so hot! And running in the baking sun is something you have to let your body get used to gradually. Not for J + T… they sprint off and actually nearly manage to make it within 20 minutes too (as I later hear, they disappear from my sight pretty much immediately). Back at the flat I empty a glass of water over my head and chill out in the grass, 25 mins again, perhaps. Not too bad for this weather.

I read a bit more, eat my summer spaghetti meal outside in the ever-continuously radiating sun, and sit down to read a bit more around 19.30 – a painstaking process. I think it’s been enough for today – probably heading over to the Graduate soon for a regular quiet pint night.

May 2005

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