A day in the life, 2023
The boy (6yo) wakes up five minutes before my alarm goes off at seven. He's always early. Sometimes 30 mins, sometimes only three. He shouts for Daddy, or Mummy, as the mood takes him, but Mummy went out to walk the dog and get a coffee at six thirty, so I'm usually the one roused by his shouting. I carry him to the sofa in the living room. The sofa must be prepared the night before, with a warm blanket (cozie) covering the cold leather, the remote on the armrest, and a second cozie to cover. I leave him there and make coffee for myself, and a waffle with nutella for him. We call them fake waffles because they're the frozen kind, and not daddy-waffles which are the kind I make. I like Belgian liege waffles, with pearl sugar bits, and I like them without nutella.
Mummy soon returns, with hot cocoas for each boy. She makes breakfast for the bigger boy, maybe eggs, maybe a bacon sandwich. The bread is always warmed up in the oven, and she'll bake rolls for the boys' packed lunches too. I head upstairs to do my exercises. I've been trying to work hard at it this year, but it doesn't seem to have much effect. The pain in my shoulders from a few years ago is gone, but I'm not building extra muscle, and all the stretching feels endless.
Some days I'll work from home, sitting upstairs in my office, one of the best rooms of the house. I play random music and try to work through things, but I miss the personal connection. I'll often find some excuse to pop downstairs in the hope of a chat, or I'll walk the backyard a little and enjoy the sun. Recently I've been stealing a quick swim at the local pool before work. It's always empty in the morning.
Other days I'll drive to the Bart station. Ridership is still low after the pandemic, so parking is easy and I can always get a seat. I like to do some work on my laptop to distract me, if I've got something that doesn't need decent internet or help from others. When I get to the city, I order Bluebottle coffee and a waffle from my phone as I walk there, spend ten minutes working from there, and then go into the office. The office is lovely: near the Bart, near the Saleforce park, a large space, and a fun team to work with. It's my first real crack at startup life, which is very different. I like the freedom to change, but I do miss having millions of users.
Lunch at the office is great. If it were left to me, we'd be eating burgers every day. Thankfully, it is not left to me. We all eat around a large table - which is just large enough. We have our meetings, we have our coffees, we ship our features, and then head home. If I don't get a seat from the city, I often get one halfway. Sometimes I can work, sometimes I just stare into space.
Back home, I get a hug from the 11yo. He's started doing that again, which is great. The 6yo has stopped rushing to the door to hug me, and I usually have to shout to get him to look away from the TV. Phases, it's all phases. My wife makes the boys several meals, and makes a Blue Apron for me. It's good. I sit with the boys and watch some TV. We've been watching lots of Simpsons and Grand Tour recently.
At 7.30 we dig out the melatonin for the boys, and turn off devices. I read to the 6yo. We're reading Real Pigeons, which is good stuff. At eight, we do "jobs" - have a wee, brush teeth, pyjamas, and into bed. Lights out, but he's got a space image projector for the ceiling. I play some Supergreat Kids stories on my phone until he falls asleep, playing solitaire on my iPad while I wait.
It's probably about 9 o'clock at this point and I should head back up to my office and do something useful. Maybe file some papers, organize things. Maybe learn some new frameworks, read a book. Write a blog post, imagine that! In truth, I never do these things. I stare at the beer in the fridge, knowing it'll be bad for me. It stares back. I have a protein shake instead, which helps my muscles recover from the morning workout, and I go to watch TV. At 9.30 my wife says goodnight and goes to bed. At 10.30, I quietly join her.
I wrote one of these before, in 2018:
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