RogerBW's Blog

Back to Work 02 February 2015

Today I go back to work for the first time this year.

I work for an entity that hangs on the side of an academic instutition, so we get their leave policies. The leave year ends at the end of January, there's extra compulsory leave at the end of December because the whole site is closed around Christmas, and the allowance is reasonably generous. I don't go for long summer holidays, and in 2014 I didn't get to Essen either. In previous years I've taken all of December off, but this time I thought I'd work backwards from the end of the leave year, which saw me finishing work on the Friday before Christmas.

It worked rather well; I missed some of the traditional heavy drinking in the run-up to Christmas, but I've mostly had time off that wasn't constantly in the shadow of an upcoming Big Event, and it's all been quite pleasant. I didn't quite get everything done that I'd planned (I had a very productive first few weeks, including the production of this blog engine, but as soon as I stopped eating Christmas meals I was back to normal).

Mind you, I almost certainly couldn't sustain the long holiday-free stretches if I were commuting instead of working from home. I haven't taken a sick day since I started this job; I may feel a bit poorly sometimes, but so far I've always been able at least to get on slowly with ongoing tasks and respond to emergencies via laptop from my bed, when dragging myself out, getting dressed, and spending an hour or more on trains (and then infecting the rest of the office when I got there) simply wouldn't have been sensible. I do miss the ease of evenings out in London, but on balance I think it's worth it.

And I'm one of the very few people in this country still able to smoke at work. Though I don't like to smoke in the house, and at the moment it's too cold even for me to be sitting around outside.

Tags: real life

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