Trying to get home can prove a little tricky

Down the road, a fifteen minute gentle amble along the shore line is the village pub. Mind you, in my former life I was not one to pop out for to the pub in the middle of the work day, but the local pub does a surprisingly good coffee. So with travel cup in hand I head down to grab a drink, a quick break from work, a nice walk in the sun, and the possibility of seeing another human being. It won't take long, 40 minutes at most - besides, I think, I have a meeting soon, so I shan't dally.

The walk there is quick and pleasant, the sun is shining and I can hear the sea lap gently against the shore. The soothing sound interrupted now and again by the chatter of a bird. I feel the stress washing away and the thoughts of work dwindling to a mere memory...

Before I know it I'm at the pub, the inside as warm as ever, as warm as every village pub should be, a bastion against the cold wind that is oft ever present, regardless of the sun. I grab a coffee, and chat for a few minutes, it's nice to be away from my desk, from the worries of work and even more importantly, out of my head. I stay for longer than I should but it's nice to talk. I grab a second coffee, but this time I leave, after all, I have that meeting to go to - a meeting I should really prep for.

I leave the pub, the sun still high in the sky, though the temperature has dropped slightly. I zip up my top and start the short walk home. A quick fifteen minutes and it would give me a solid hour to prepare, more than enough.

Sadly the village had other plans.

Maybe it was because the sun was shining, or maybe I was just unlucky - but every few minutes I ran into someone else from the village. I tried to be polite, to let them know I had to get back to work, but they all wanted to chat, to ask how I was getting on. I'm still new, and I can't really afford to be too rude, at least not yet. So I stayed, I talked - it was only one person, even if it took five or ten minutes I'd still be fine.

"How's the house getting on," I asked, having met this local a few days ago. He was in work overalls, and clearly in the process of some hardcore DIY.

I could see the twinkle in his eye, my question was clearly a misstep - "Why don't I give you a tour?" I could feel the stress levels rising, the looming work, the rejection of my new community's attempts at making me welcome...

"I'd love to," I replied, "but I have a meeting I need to prep for."

"Ah," he replied, before continuing the conversation. I tried to hide my sense of rushing before finally making my escape and once more attempting what was starting to feel like a very difficult journey home.

Twenty more minutes and three more people and I finally made it home - with ten whole minutes to spare. On one hand it's really lovely that people are so friendly, that you can stop and chat, it certainly helps fight off the isolation. But my pace of life isn't always quiet so relaxed. Just one more thing to get used to.

Ten minutes before my meeting - I could prepare a little, or I could grab a snack to go with the coffee...

Oh well, it wouldn't be the first meeting I had blagged my way through.

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