“I get lonely, but I ain’t that lonely yet.”
She belted the lyrics at the top of her melodic range, giving as much meaning to them as she felt capable at that moment in time: Humidity clouding up her lungs, mosquitoes whizzing past her ear, tension shooting in unpredictable spasms up and down her neck.
Her brows arrowed suddenly down over her nose. Tension?
She rolled her shoulders experimentally; but yes, it was true! Tension in veritable spades. Her eyebrows did further acrobatics as they raised themselves in confused disbelief.
Thing was, she’d been on holidays for, like, two and a half weeks! Where the hickety heck would tension be coming from at this particular point in spacetime, when she was supposed to be at prime serenity?
Her head fell back against the couch as she reflected upon her day. It had started with an iced coffee (remember, it is hot) as she reviewed the list of DIY projects she had planned for the next several months. The previous days plans had involved visits to the hardware and craft stores for various supplies, however these had been cruelly stymied by first a friend demanding coffee visits, and then a client demanding therapy in exchange for money. She had intended to catch up on these plans this day.
“Ha!” Scoffed the universe. “I do so love when you guys try to make these so called ‘plans.'”
For as her partner was dressing for work that morning, he’d ever-so-casually dropped the gentle reminder that she was to meet him and another colleague for a business lunch at 11:30am.
Quickly realising this would leave inadequate time for her shopping adventures, she had immediately abandoned all hope of being productive in the slightest, and instead played Sims 4. Come 11am she had hopped into the shower, a pretty dress, makeup and her car to meet for lunch.
Lunch had turned out to be quite beery (unsurprising, given it was at a brewery) and fun. At its conclusion she and her partner had gone for a stroll to walk off said beers prior to driving home. Somehow they had found themselves in an argument of sorts; over mosquito remedies, of all things.
Interesting, she thought in review. Perhaps the current tension and this recently past tension are related? Was I more irritable than usual today?
Yes, she decided. Absolutely. At the time of said argument, her partner had expressed the concern that she was holding on to some unspoken bitterness or resentment. He reasoned that she had been noticeably irritable at multiple points over the past week or so, and that perhaps these otherwise unrelated incidents of unseasonable anger were the only way she felt safe to express said underlying bitterness.
“You really think this is what is happening?” She had asked. “Because no.”
However she did have to acknowledge that she had been far more aggravated than usual. She couldn’t pinpoint a specific reason, but she was pretty sure there was no underlying unresolved issue.
“Although…” she hemmed, “I mean, if I you are insisting with uncompromising force that I pick a reason: I do really, really want to buy a pack of cigarettes.”
You see, she and her partner had bought cigarettes for Deliverance festival, and had pretty much continued to smoke through New Year’s Eve and until they’d left their Monteville holiday house. She had been smoking about fifteen cigarettes a day for the past month, until quitting cold turkey five days ago.
Suddenly all that tension, irritability and argumentativeness made a couple of bunches more sense.
She sighed miserably and grumbled softly to herself, “Well, I guess we should add that to the list of ‘ways I’m never planning to ever again have fun’. Er, I mean, ‘resolutions’.”
“What?” her partner called from the other side of the room.
“Nothing!” she said. “Except that I need to learn to grumble quietlier,” she grumbled.
“I said shut up!”