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Sunday, July 8, 2007

This has been the most work-intensive weekend I can remember for a long time. The thing is, in the old days I used to work much harder than this for much longer hours for many more days in a row, and I wouldnít get nearly as much done as I do now. And letís face it, I donít work very hard now. Thatís what makes this weekend so unusual.

Over the years of doing the same thing over and over, Iíve learned a lot about how to get through the same amount of work in less time and using less energy. But even beyond that, Iíve learned there are many parts of the job that I once considered essential that really arenít. The reason it takes me fewer steps to get from A to Z now is that I leave a lot of steps out. I do pretty much no more than I can get away with.

July is just a different kind of month, with all the tax returns and special reports that have to be done. I even have a special to-do list for July. I print it at the beginning of each week, then cross off the tasks Iíve already completed. It starts pretty slowly, and by the last week of the month itís cause for alarm, because thereís almost always so much left to do. Somehow I manage to get it all done every time.

Iím taking things a little more seriously this time around, though, and itís all because Julie isnít around for me to lean on when I need help. I could always count on her to gather the raw data from The Kennel, which made my part of the job a lot simpler. Now I have to go to the people who are still there and ask them for specific bits of information, and itís hard to know exactly how to ask for what I need. And chances are, the first person I ask wonít know any more than I do, because Paul is no longer around, either. Itís such a muddle.

8 July 2007

The top of the birch looks dead, but leaves still grow on the lower branches.

So I spent my Saturday and most of my Sunday getting through the petty tasks that keep me from spending time on the big items. This wasnít how I wanted to spend the weekend, but itís good that I was able to motivate myself to get started each day, because once I start, the momentum keeps me going. I worked a lot later this evening, for example, than I ever thought I could on a Sunday. Itís just that one thing led to another, and I kept thinking of one more piece I wanted to add to the puzzle, before Monday sets in. On Mondays I have a lot less control of my time, so I have to do the contingency items whenever I can. Like right now.

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