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Freezing cold
All we need now is an airport strike...

December 20, 2002
The Iranian

We all know someone who always gives a predictable answer in response to a greeting: "Hi! How are you?" "So busy - up to my eyeballs..." Eventually you get bored of asking them because it seems like they are using the word 'busy' to convey a sense of self-importance and success. The word 'busy' has become a status symbol.

Now I have a confession to make: I am that 'busy' person you want to avoid at parties, in the street or anywhere. However, I do not use it to try and convey self importance. The whole office is extremely busy and I am simply a cog in a large wheel. And to cap it all my wife Varinder is extremely stressed because our accountant claims he can no longer cope with his workload.

However, it was yesterday morning when my sanity was stretched to its limit . I was walking down the newly carpeted stairs from our loft when my I lost my footing near the top. I landed on my backside with one leg in front of me and the other twisted underneath and behind me.

As I slid down with my buttocks thumping each step sideways, I honestly thought that my anus was going to tear to twice what god had given me. The reason why I couldn't use my hands to break my fall was that I was holding my laptop and cables securely to my chest in case I started rolling head over foot. Many bumps and an extremely sore bottom later, I reached the bottom of the stairs.

Varinder, in her usual helpful way, was standing at the bottom looking at me as if I had suddenly gone mad.

"What are you doing?" she shrieked.

"I AM FALLING DOWN THE FUCKING STAIRS!" I shouted back. I had momentarily snapped in front of everyone

I suddenly heard about 6 of our colleagues peel with laughter. The more polite ones were trying to suppress their snorts whilst characters like Nick were rolling on the floor. Because I had raised my voice at my gorgeous wife she stormed off. I ran after her still holding my laptop.

"Honey that really hurt." I pleaded

"Good!" She smiled tight-lipped. I was in the doghouse for the rest of the day.

Later in the afternoon I received a call. Our accountant was finding our finances too much like hard work and wanted to resign after Christmas. I begged him to stick with it until we found a replacement. He seemed to reluctantly agree but there is no telling whether or not he will come back after Christmas.

At midnight I was switching the lights off to follow V to bed when the phone rang. A colleague in the US wants to see me about a project (it was 4pm his time). My stomach tightened as if a hand was squeezing my intestines. This would mean a last minute flight to the US and just before Christmas. This would also mean me having my phone switched on to trouble shoot any problems with colleagues who were going to have to work over the festive period.

I curled up next to V and gently whispered that I had to fly over the water next week. Even in her half sleep state she managed to deliver a sharp kick to my shin.

"You still haven't apologised for shouting at me this morning and now you want to bugger off to the US two days before Christmas..."

I rolled onto my back and bit my lip.

"Come with me and we'll spend Christmas and New Year in Toronto!"

"It'll be freezing cold"

"So! We'll rent an SUV and drive to Montreal." I suggested.

Today she is still thinking about it. I have also just heard that airport staff may go on strike around Christmas time. This will completely ruin our break but I won't say anything to V until I know for sure. In the meantime I am trying to be cheerful.

"You better make this into a good trip because I am cancelling a whole lot of family gatherings not to mention your mum's visit," V warned.

I can now confirm (20 mins since I last typed) that we are going to NYC and then Toronto to have a lovely break with my Canadian relatives. A 4X4 has been hired and flight tickets bought. All we need now is an airport strike...

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