End of the working year
I can stand there for ages, watching the cars zoom across the flyover on their modern missions in the modern world. I am always glad I'm not in them: that, for now, I don't have to travel any further.
If you look left, you can see the Cowley Gas Tower and the Mini factory. I never mind industrial architecture in the winter. Even in the summer it looks better than the Business Park you see when you turn around. The sky is big, too, and I love it. I miss the big sky of my childhood by the sea.
But I'm not paid to look at the view. So after a while I gird my loins, crack my knuckles, and stride up to the plexiglass barriers. They part at the lightest touch of my proximity card, and I'm in.
And without a doubt, it's been a better place to be this year than last. I have a job that I really wanted, that is real and practical and useful, and I seem to be allowed to get on and do it. I have many lovely friends and colleagues and a slow-growing feeling that actually, I might be in more or less the right place at more or less the right time. I survived my Dark Days.
One of the outcomes, of course, was that I broke away from full time office work. I needed some time to lick my wounds, and there was something else I wanted to do. My plumbing year is a whole different post, but my sense is that, one day, I will see that that cloud did indeed have a silver lining. NGO X is restored as the best place I have ever worked, and very happy I am about it, as I like to think I'm pretty useful to have around.