My desk sits just less than two metres away from a queen size bed. Above the bed hangs a poster depicting Grace Kelly viewed through a giant and tempting champagne flute. Daylight falls from the skylight onto the bed, bouncing off the white pillow cases and giving the impression that the bed itself produces light. The pale cream duvet cover, adorned by classic floral prints, shares its own soft focus glow. Through physics only Einstein could explain, this combination of light, bed and Grace Kelly generates a peculiar, selective gravity. Peculiar in that it works sideways, drawing me from the desk, and selective in that it only affects me. Three books, three camera lenses, two spectacle cases and a napsack sit on the duvet. They dampen the gravitational field.
Coffee helps as well. Coffee and tea have become part of my routine now. Routine is a double-edged sword. Just having a routine is a luxury. It's comfy, even the exhausting parts of routine, such as exercise, have inherent comfort in them. The espresso I make myself after lunch (essential in defeating peculiar gravity), the afternoon cup of tea; they're like a well-loved t-shirt or a combination duvet-safety net. But comfort leads to complacency and boredom, and these must be avoided at all costs. Certain amounts of discomfort are necessary to move forward; to shift your legs when they fall asleep.
An unfinished novel is a source of discomfort, the blank pages nagging and demanding attention. Tumultuous housemates also provide discomfort and demand, sadly, a great deal more attention. They're louder and harder to ignore. But there is order to things, and by dealing with the former there is escape from the latter.
It's amazing what you work out while having a cup of tea.