As I approach my desk for round two of my writing session this morning I smile at the disarray of objects upon its surface.
A white feather quill pen is in the furtherest corner, a birthday present from my son a few years ago ‘to help with your writing Mamma’. Five pencils are lined up, ready to be sharpened. They have lain there for three weeks, dull and useless, with pens and a fountain pen tipped over them. In this heap are my ubiquitous Hals throat lozenges; these are littered wherever I sit down to work or read and if none are in the house I feel bereft and unable to concentrate.
Near the quill pen is a 16 inch tall cardboard cut-out of Heisenberg from ‘Breaking Bad’ complete with yellow suit and gas mask. I am a total fan of the series and am currently going through cold turkey after viewing the final episode.
Next to him are two postcards; one from Vietnam showing a typical floating market in the Mekong Delta. This is from a friend travelling there as I write. The other card is one I bought at The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge after seeing the Claude Monet’s ‘Springtime’ (1886) there. Next to them stands a thank you card from another friend. Its brightly coloured flowers in equally decorative pots brighten this grey March day and shows how well she knows pot-mad me.
Bored yet? I hope not. Luckily this is a rather large wooden desk, with lots of room for knickknacks and every morning my iPad and I fight the same battle to make space for my keyboard and cup of tea. Yes, this was the reason for my break and with the fiercest of ginger tea – the one in the red packaging – I am sipping it from the mug bought for me by my son for my last birthday. On it are the words ‘Go away I’m writing’. I love it so. My only regret, I wish I was bothered by more visitors so I could swing the cup and its message at them.
For some quick music I lean over and switch on my pink iPod and to tell the time I look at my pink Beetle car ornament with clock in its door. There is more as a cuddly bear (from my son) cradles the sign 40 – so you know my age or so now! Then a sweet ornament of a boy lays on his side, engrossed in a book (from my mother).
A giant black Helix lamp is adorned with my costume jewellery, dangling down in shades of white, grey and gold. On either side of my iPad are various notebooks, A4 writing pads and files. Upon some are doodles I draw whilst thinking or talking on the phone. My reading glasses lay unused to one side as my eyes are still undecided if with or without is better for working on the computer.
To my right the beginning of my packing pile for the Easter holiday is growing with a shower cap perched precariously on my pink Blott writing pad and a turquoise nail varnish balanced on the edge of the desk. By my side rests my iPhone, an item, which for better or worse, has become an extension of my arm. Last but not least, my two coasters, a tile one made by son as young in primary school, the other one a heart shape bead one made many years ago by my niece.
I never realised how my family and friends surround me on a typical writing day, that one glance up is rewarded with a a sparkle of love and warmth. And yes, fun too.
I would love to hear about your working space / desks. What surrounds you? Or do you prefer a clean tidy area in which to work? What precious items are there for you to look up at?
“To bring your attention to a stone, a tree or an animal does not mean to think about it, but simply to perceive it, to hold it in your awareness.”
By Eckhart Tolle