Winter Blues

The winter blues, yes I have them.

The last few days at the house of TGOG have been quite ordinary indeed.  The weather has been cold and miserable, there has been very little sunlight, and both Kim and Ben have a very strong dose of gastroenteritis.  Pretty shitty sort of day today (literally), and I took the day off work to look after them both.  Being sustainable is the last thing on my mind today, however someone still has to feed the chooks, clean the house, do the washing, and keep them hydrated (tap water of course).

Both cherubs are sleeping right now, so I have a little time to myself, that is of course, until they wake up and I put on my nurses apron and escort them to the loo for the umpteenth time today.  I am not complaining, it is one of the joys and duties of being a father and husband.

After the recent elation I felt upon publishing my e-book, it has kind of been slow and quite, other than the gastro.  I have washed my hands – with my own soap – more times than I can remember, in the feeble attempt of warding off the bug myself.  As sure as the sky is grey, I will probably fall ill tomorrow, and have warned people away from visiting.  We are in lock down and under quarantine!

Gardening has been put on the back burner for the last few weeks, because it has been so cold and wet that it is not a pleasurable task.  The garden usually holds its own at this time of the year, so I am not that worried in the slightest.  The broad beans are about 1.5 metres tall, the garlic and onions have good growth, as does the broccoli and cabbages.  All the fruit trees have been pruned, and the deciduous varieties have dropped their leaves, much to the joy of the two bantams who love scratching through all of the leaf litter.  I have let them free range for the last couple of days, so they can do the weeding work that I couldn’t be bothered to attempt.  So far so good as they are tireless weeders, and when I take a break from nursing, I pop out to watch them.  They are so funny to watch, and puts a smile and a chuckle into an otherwise ordinary day.

Both yesterday and today, I have attempted many times to begin another book, which I was hoping would just flow from my finger tips.  Alas, it is just not happening.  Every time I sit down to write, the Interwebs distract me, which I suppose is its role in today’s society.  I seem to be gravitating to peak oil blogs full of collapse stories, climate news full of new tipping points and disasters, which is never good when you have the blues.  Misery loves company, so they say, and that is kind of how I feel right now.  Just a little low which I know will pass, and I will be back banging on the keyboard whipping up witty prose both here and in a new manuscript.

Anyway, I know it will all get better around here soon.  Ben is on the mend after three days of sickness.  He is eating again, but not with the appetite we are used to seeing, however it is improving.  I dare say a big breakfast will be in order tomorrow when he wakes up.  Kim will take a couple of days to recover, but that is fine, because I am the best nurse bloke they have, and am dedicated to the task.  I am just happy in knowing that I am giving them the best loving care that I can.  A speedy recovery to both my charges!

I know that so many people have it a lot harder than we do, but occasionally you just got to get things off your chest.  It can’t be all beer and green skittles around here.

One can never get quite used to the smell of disinfectant.   Better light another incense stick!


  1. Janet says

    You’re a treasure, Gavin. I hope Kim and Ben and feeling better. I will know who to call next time I get sick :-)

  2. Tracey says

    Sometimes finishing a big project (like your e-book) brings a sense of anti-climax after that first feeling of big elation. Maybe that’s why you’re suffering a bit of writer’s block and feeling down in the dumps. Plus having gastro in the house is not a lot of fun.

    • says

      Tracey, so true. After I wrote this post, I gave myself a good talking to, and overcame the writers block and my mood. Spent the evening working on my new book about backyard chickens! Stay tuned.

  3. says

    Hi Gavin,

    Best wishes to Kim and Ben for a quick recovery and fingers crossed you escape the lurgy – although maybe the winter blues is gastroenteritis of the heart/soul/brain/whatever bit of us that is responsible for moods.

    Don’t worry, blue skies are on their way along with your summer. Over here in Old Blighty you can tell it’s summer as despite the grey clouds and almost constant rain, the temperature has risen slightly. :-) Must be because of our big sports day – the Olympics. It’s a running joke here that the quickest way to guarantee rain is to hold a village fete, sports day or barbecue (along with the minor rain spells of washing the car, mowing the lawn or hanging out the washing). Am staving off grey cloud days by running into the yard at every bit of sun and staring at my flowers and bees (whilst chanting ‘small pleasures, small pleasures’ under my breath). Needless to say the neighbours think I’m about to be sectioned.

    Thinking of you all and hoping things cheer up soon.

    take care

    • says

      Thanks. Both are feeling slightly better today, however I still have them confined to their bedrooms, and am keeping the ship afloat around them. They both should be fine by tomorrow, albeit battered and bruised from the experience. Full recovery will take a few days.

      Here is to more sunny days for both of us!

  4. says

    Aaah, ya big wimp! :)

    Seriously, watch out for the dreaded lurgie! I got caught last week after coming home and was laid up for three days with some sort of bug. Very unusual, They usually don’t get hold of me like that.

    I bet by the weekend you’ll be back to your bright and happy best.


  5. says

    Winter blues and gastro – great combo. No wonder you’re reading doom and gloom stuff. Eat some greens, get some fresh air, keep washing your hands. We had 3 out 4 of us come down with pneumonia a few years ago,and my sick husband chose to read “The Long Emergency”, thereby sending himself into a tailspin of anxiety and depression. Do not go there. I bought your book, by the way – wonderful! And shared it on my FB page. Also, my older daughter was chatting to me while I was checking your blog, saw the soap post and wants to try it! They’ll be better soon.

    • says

      Hi Dawn.

      Thankfully, I am yet to succumb to the bug, even though I felt a little nauseous late last night. It was Jim Kunstlers blog that I read the gloom and doom at, closely followed by John Michael Greer’s The Archdruid report! You get the idea.

      Thanks for the fantastic book review on Smashwords. I really appreciated it.

      Gav x

  6. says

    Dear Gavin, get well wishes from Canada! Our days just started getting shorter :-(
    I sit in front of my “Happy Lite” for 10 minutes every morning in the winter months. It has saved me thousands of dollars in drugs. I noticed a difference in my mood the second day. My doctor actually recommended it.
    Also cut back on the scary reading for a bit and live in the “now”.
    Love the blog. I made my first batch of soap last month and it was a blast! I want to tackle cheese next, but milk is an issue. We have very few places to get it at a reasonable price. The joys of living in the North.
    Take care of yourself and your great family

  7. says

    The thought of you in a nurses outfit is not inspiring me mate, however Kim and Ben will truly be thankful for your help. Keep your chin up, blue skies are coming.

    I have left a review for the book and given you a shameless plug on my blog.

    Love to You and Family
    Keep it green

  8. says

    Hang in there Gavin, my best to Kim and Ben too. I’m a bit over these dreary winter days too, but the days have already been getting longer for a week. How’s that for a happy thought? :)

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