starting the day

This morning my alarm woke me at 02:40, about 20 minutes earlier than usual. I wanted to allow a little extra time for my run to work because I knew it would be raining and I thought I might want to take shelter for a few minutes if I encountered a heavy shower. As it turned out it rained steadily and continuously for my whole 11 km run to work, but it was relatively light rain. When I arrived at work I was wet, but not soaked by any means. So I suppose that’s a good start to the day.

After I’d washed and changed I settled down at my desk and started up my computer. I use my work computer to play music before my colleagues or my manager arrive. As always, I selected J.S. Bach to begin. I’m pretty sure there’s no better way to start a work day. In a little while the night cleaner, Bista, came in. Like nearly all our night cleaners, he is from Nepal. His family home was destroyed in the recent earthquake. Bista commented that I always play the same type of music. Although Bach is clearly not to his tastes, he was kind enough not to be critical.

After attending to a few emails, recording my run details, and grinding a day’s worth of coffee beans, I went for my usual one-hour walk through the city. There’s a lot of construction going on in Rat City, carried out by people who mostly wear high-visibility synthetic ‘safety’ clothing. I was wearing an old ‘safety’ jacket too, which I had bought for a couple of dollars from a charity shop. In the era of my jacket’s working life, ‘safety’ meant that welding sparks wouldn’t melt it or set it on fire. My jacket is, of course, black. Adjacent to one of the many building sites I found a dirty and soaking wet discarded worker’s jacket.

[discarded work jacket]
[discarded work jacket]

I couldn’t waste this opportunity. I have a small collection of warm clothing that I have collected from the streets and wear to stand around before the start of races such as the SMH Half Marathon. I can then throw the surplus clothing away (at no cost) just as the race is about to start. This fluoro jacket is now added to my collection – another positive at the beginning of the day, and the sun wasn’t even up yet.

Back in the office after my walk (now about 06:45) I re-started Bach and prepared my breakfast. This is my very favourite part of the day.


I carefully brewed my coffee using a measured 18 g of course-ground Rwanda Inzovu coffee and steeping for timed 4 minutes. I toasted an 81 gram piece of Sonoma fruit spelt sourdough bread. And I indulged in an excellent book: Patricia Henley’s In the River Sweet. I had actually purchased the Sonoma bread, whereas usually I eat bread scavenged from a dumpster. This toast was good. Very good. I wonder if paying for it contributed to that good taste? Anyway, for whatever reason this breakfast time will almost certainly be the zenith of my day. It’s not yet 07:30, but it’s all downhill from here.


About oldblack

ageing and decaying, misanthropic,
This entry was posted in books, coffee, emotions, food, music, observations, running, work and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to starting the day

  1. Wait. You RUN to work and then you take a 1 HOUR WALK after THAT?! My God. You run/walk more in a day than I do in a month! Your breakfast looks lovely. Perhaps it tasted better because it’s fresher (the bread)? I love your reuse of clothing. It’s very thrifty and smart — great that you can toss it because it was free! What is “In the River Sweet” about?

    • OK, never mind. I looked up Patricia Henley’s book. Looks interesting.

    • oldblack says:

      Well, Julee, the walk is for relaxation. It’s done at a slow pace and I often buy some fruit. Thrifty is definitely me, but the problem is you have to store this stuff. My freezer is full of bread, and my wardrobe is full of second-hand clothes!

      I’m not sure what you read about Henley’s book, but it is a rather complex book with lots of issues happening in the characters’ lives. It defies simple summary! On one level it’s one of those “issues” stories, but really, to simply see it as a book on adoption or on gay issues, or on Vietnam, does not do it justice.

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