Got to make up 3 hours overtime so I came in 2 hours early today. I drove past our old house, got the mail and checked everything was in order. Took less than a minute then I drove off to work. Used up a quarter of a tank and figured I'd see if the local petrol station was open. It was, and there were only 2 cars on the forecourt, but as I slowed up I noticed plastic covers on all the petrol pumps indicating they had none.
I filled up the car on Friday which was day one of the panic buying. I drove to Ely to meet Sanjay (the artist). He'd cancelled meeting on Thursday and on Friday morning he rang me and started the conversation with "not I'm not trying to blag a lift" so of course that's what I assumed. He wanted me to drive to Cambridge (45 min drive) hang out with him at the Mill Pond (a park by the river with the punts etc) and then drive him back home. Sounded like a long day to me and I wasn't feeling it. Especially with people panic buying petrol.
After I said no, he said it was no problem and that he'd get the train after work (he's not driving at the moment) and he would be there about 6pm. I went early and tried 4 petrol stations before finding one where the queue wasn't too mad. Mind you, people were getting unecessarily aggressive at one point as someone wasn't leaving enough space for another to leave the petrol station and it quickly descended into a shouting match.
As 6pm approached I got a phone call. Sanjay trying to cancel on me (again). When he realised I was already in Ely he said he'd stick to the original plan, but he'd be at least 90 mins late. So I went to McDonald's and then I went to the supermarket to get some snacks for my long weekend. Afterwards I was sat in the Tesco car park which is right next to the train station car park. Another call - he'd met his friend whilst in the pub (???) and asked if I could give them a lift when they got back to Ely as it was on the way back to Sanjays. I didn't want to, but of course I agreed. I just wanted this whole thing to be over tbh.
Then he calls again, he left his house keys at work and would be another hour. He offered to buy me dinner, but I ended up cancelling on him. I know he has ADHD and that he spent a fair few years taking hard drugs - so he's a bit all over the place. But I didn't appreciate being strung along. I rang Jack, but he wasn't about that evening. So I drove home, had a smoke on the way. Watched the sun setting over the fields on the drive home.
On Saturday morning I saw the black cat in our garden for the first time in a week. This was the cat that visited me a few days in a row when I was doing my 5:15 am wake and bake. After making a fuss of the cat and taking a few short videos of it to test out my phone camera (which can shoot at 60FPS in 4k and 26FPS in 8k resolution). Afterwards I went on my usual bike ride. But I did something a little different - I didn't sit down to pedal. Stood up for the whole ride and kept it in 27th gear - even on the 3/4 mile uphill part. It feels like you're going in slow motion when you're taking a steep hill in the highest gear on your bike. It's quite an intense exercise. I did the same thing again 3 days in a row over my long weekend. Really pushing for the burn.
I've been enjoying taking 5 mins out half way through my bike trip for a smoke. I stop at the same place which is in the middle of nowhere on this farm track. Nobody about and it's so tranquil. When I got home I got chatting to my dad in the garage, they let me sit in their late 90's Merc SLK. Never been in a car with such a well made interior. They let me put the electric hard top down. My dad looked pleased that I was so excited being in the car. I've wanted a 2 seater sports car for a long time. It had more leg room than any car I've ever driven and it was so low to the ground. These early SLK's are dirt cheap and they also do them in manual. A few hours later my mum offered to put me on their car insurance. But I need to focus on my house before I consider cars again.
When I went to move my car I noticed water on the road by the neighbours. Without looking I knew he'd be washing his early 2000's Jag XKR. Sure enough he was. I decided to approach and chat to him (for the first time). We had a 30 min chat about cars etc. It was nice.
Later that day I met with Jack up the park for a smoke and catch up. Spent most of the weekend playing PSU or New Vegas. Later on Saturday evening I finally got a reply from Rob. He's the ex-Marine who turned into an alcoholic and coke head after he got discharged from the Marines after his ACL gave out in his knee and he needed surgery. I'd tried messaging him a fair few times over the course of several months with no reply. He apologised that he'd been in "ghost mode" and invited me over. I wasn't so sure, but I figured I might as well
So I drove to Cambridge on Saturday evening. I forget how quick a drive it is from where my parents live, which is why the village is so expensive these days. I noticed even more new buildings and changes as I took another drive into the city. Me, Rob, his gf and one of their friends hung out for a few hours. I brought my art portfolio and showed them my pictures. Rob also asked to see my latest contact staffing video and showed it to his gf. She seemed very impressed, from the smiles and expressions she was making as she watched the video.
I stayed for 3 or 4 hours. It wasn't a long one, as they were drinking, smoking and doing coke. It's not a pleasant environment. Rob was blasting his music too loud as usual. I was drinking plenty of water that evening, especially after a very strong coffee that Rob made me that dried my mouth out entirely. As such I went to the toilet a few times. The quality of these older build houses was apparent, as the loud, bassy music which unnerved me as I thought it would cause a public disturbance etc with neighbours could barely be heard from the downstairs bathroom. So I can only assume the sound didn't travel anywhere near as much as bass used to in my old house in March.
On Sunday I went for my morning bike ride and smoke. Later in the afternoon I went to the shop to get some snacks and then went to the old graveyard where they'd moved the headstones alongside one wall. So it basically became a little park. Never used much though. I staffed there in the shade for a bit. There's a few houses backed onto this park and I saw 3 cats whilst I was there. All of them were a little timid and didn't come over. I did get one photo of them though.
Decided not to smoke there as it backed onto houses and several of them had their windows open as it was a warm afternoon. So I walked back through the village and towards the rec (main park in the village). As I was about to get there I saw Joe (Jack's brother) on his BMX. We got chatting and he said he'd be going up the rec after he'd gone to the shop. We sat at the edge of the park by the trees so I could get some shade. He wound up waiting for Max a local guy to pick up some bud. I wanted to ask if I could too, as I'd got some off Max before but through Jack. Later that day I text Joe and the day after I got Max's number. In fact I'm meeting him tonight to pick up.
After my 4 day weekend I've only got a 4 day working week and 3 of those count. As on Friday I've got a 2 hour root canal appointment at the dentist (joy of joys). But it does mean I get to work at 12 and only have a 5 hour shift, plus I get my hour for lunch. Got in 2 hours early but the system wouldn't let me login. I was still able to go through my emails. I sent a message to the IT guy but he only just got back to me 6 mins ago (an hour after I messaged him). But now I'm logged in, so that's good.
Going to try and avoid smoking until Saturday. That way, what I pick up today along with what I already had remaining should last me into the new year and beyond. By that time I'll have my own place. Exciting times.
In general I've been feeling less stressed recently. Mind you, all the socialising did tire me out. I had noticed that I didn't really chat as much with my parents at meals over the long weekend. I was starting to become quite introvert from all the socialising. Some burn out etc. But my lazy day on Sunday evening and throughout Monday did feel nice.
I rang the solicitor yesterday and he said the buyer just has to sign and return their mortgage documents and then we're good to go. The house sale process should take 3 months and ours is approaching 6. I asked if we could close before month end (to avoid paying another month of bills) and our solicitor said that was up to the buyer.
Still, at least we know it'll all be done before the end of October. I'm hoping to have the money in our accounts by the first week in October at the latest. I'm going to ring the estate agent today and the solicitor again tomorrow. Recently I'd only called them once a week, but as we're in the final stretch I'm going to pester them. I've been very patient with them, especially considering this has taken twice as long as it should've.
I'm hoping work isn't too stressful today. I was all caught up a few weeks ago and in general I was feeling happier and less stressed. Problem is, this makes me work less in the office. I have to feel burdened by my workload before I pull out all the stops and get caught up. Then I coast along for a few weeks, fall behind again and it rekindles my enthusiasm and drive to get caught up.
Ah well, I can login to the system now, so I best get back to work. Meeting with the new HR manager at 3pm today. Discuss what they could do to help me. Not sure what they could do? Maybe he has some suggestions. Personally just telling him about my ADHD diagnosis and my pending Autism assessment felt like a big step for me. Not sure I really require any special treatment. I just wanted to cover my back in case my "silly mistakes" at work end up getting to a point where I get a verbal or written warning.
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