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I haven’t posted in weeks, and a couple of people have messaged me asking if everything is okay, especially considering that my most recent posts involved me getting over that pneumonia.

The answer is that everything has been good, because I’ve been on vacation. The Boss™ has the very civilized attitude that he doesn’t want to work over Christmas and New Years, and the even more civilized attitude that he isn’t going to ask his employees to work when he won’t, so every year we shut down the company from Christmas Eve until the first week of January. This usually ends up being about a two-week break from work, except for emergency on-call which we try and split up fairly; this year we had a 12-day shutdown and four on-call techs, so it was an easy division. Since I’m the only on-call tech without a kids (or, in one case, grandkids) I volunteered to take Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day. The fact that my selfless sacrifice freed me up to drink on New Years’ Eve (unlike last year) should be regarded as a happy coincidence.

So what did I do with my two weeks of downtime?

Nothing. At all. It was glorious.

Okay, I did take a couple of emergency calls during my on-call, and I cooked a lot of meals, and did some odd jobs around the house like installing hooks in the downstairs bathroom, but for the most part I read old Discworld novels, played a lot of Star Wars: The Old Republic and experimented with mixing various cocktails. (A rye Old Fashioned is now officially my new favourite cocktail, by the way.) I spent a lot of time bundled up in front of the fire snuggling with the dogs.

It was a desperately-needed break from my life, is the point I’m trying to make.

Some low-grade socializing over New Year’s, some bad weather and repeated trips to the liquor store (we got gift certificates) were the only stressors over that period. I’m back to work now, and of course the stress is ramping back up as we get caught up on the backlog, but it could be worse: At least I got an actual (and badly-needed) vacation this year.

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