Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Give Me Some Space!

The fundamental requirement for successful working from home, is a dedicated space where you can keep everything you need to do your work efficiently. Now for me it's what was once the dining room. The fact that we had to give up dining in here, was really due to not wanting gravy or custard dripped over my work-in-progress files.

So we took away the dining table and chairs and I was left with a wonderful space, plenty of room for my desk, cupboards, shelves and a small sofa. It was heaven.

But the tranquility was not to last. Gradually, almost imperceptibly at first, other people's 'things' began to creep into my room. Well alright, some of it was mine too, like the tapestry wools and spare frames, the art materials, the 'cello and of course a load of books. But I have never played the bassoon, and there are two of them sitting on the floor here, next to me. I don't own a viola a violin or an electric keyboard either, but here they are too.

The roll of cable must belong to the other half. Very useful when cable is what you need, not so handy when you'd rather have two square feet of clear carpet. I admit that the pile of handbags and briefcases may technically be mine, although I do occasionally lend them to the rest of the brood, but the beer brewing kit is definitely not mine. I am not now nor ever have been a brewer.

I like the old horseshoe in the window, but the huge telescope tripod that is propped up against it really could do with another home. The sewing box next to my printer comes in handy from time to time, but I should put it back in the cupboard upstairs it once came out of. 

I won't go into any detail about the considerable tower of ancient computers stacked in the corner of the room. Needless to say, they're his, not mine, but to be fair they are over in the half of the room I've practically given up any title to, it being stuffed to bursting with electrical detritus of unimaginable origin.

The sewing machine that you need to be a weight-lifter to pick up, is on the floor, right in front of the cupboard where I keep my envelopes. A tad annoying when I'm doing my post. But my leg muscles must be enjoying the exercise I get pushing the machine along the carpet.

Despite all this, I generally manage, with just the occasional rant, to keep my desk space clear of other people's stuff. And so I must conclude that it could be worse. And I really would fight my way through any amount of instruments and electricals, rather than commute every day like I used to do.

My space may be pretty cramped, but I have a great view across the front lawn and a friendly squirrel comes and nibbles his acorns outside sometimes for my entertainment. Not a pleasure I had in all my employed years.

But take a tip from me, be protective of your own work space, guard it jealously if you can, or before you know it, you'll be surprised about what you're sharing it with.

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