Things to think about when you have a cold sore
It's great to have a mum who takes me so seriously. Last week when I called her, I told her about my tentative (at most) plan to move to Fiji for a couple of months while I figure out how to set up a salmon farm in Alaska. My mum said, in all earnestness and without a trace of irony, "Do you think going into such an industry is a good idea? You have to think about the competition coming from Asia and the rest of the world."
M. on the other hand just told me that he wouldn't want to eat salmon every day. It's nice to know that my nearest and dearest are of the type to gently let me realise the folly of my ways.
The week before that, I had watched a Food Network programme featuring a young lady setting up her own cookie company
. I told M. that I should set up a cookie company - I know there are cookie factories in New Jersey that I could work on. M. said he didn't want to eat so many cookies. The months before my resignation at my law firm in Hong Kong, I spent hours creating an elaborate plan to undergo a career shift - I would study for an art history degree and intern in an art gallery. Oh, and the month before joining my current law firm, I was contemplating applying for a job in public relations. There was also that one time I was thinking of setting up a company for cooking classes using M.'s chef friend as the teacher. And let's not forget the creative writing class I took for a while.
Even now, I can think of at least five things I could be doing otherwise:
1. I could go into publishing and work as a lowly assistant. That way I could read books all day and get paid for it.
2. Make a T-shirt store online like David & Goliath
. I love their 'boys are smelly' socks.
3. Retrain as a lawyer for domestic violence victims at a charity
4. Learn how to make chocolate, set up a chocolate shop.
5. Import textiles from Laos.
It is clear from the current state of affairs that none of my alternative career plans will ever be put into use unless something drastic happens (law firm goes kaputt, I get sacked, M. agrees to move to Alaska etc.). As I sit here nursing the cold sore I have acquired over my frenzied working week, I feel a bit shocked at all these plans I made. What is also clear is that the sheer pressure of my work is leading me to these flights of fancy. But what I want to know is this - is this my coping mechanism, so that I can get through the late nights at work, or is this symptomatic of a genuine malaise that has to be cured (as in: am I pathological)? Does everyone else dream about having a different job as obssessively as I do? M. never seems to think about it - I asked him, and he just shrugged his shoulders.
I suppose I'm just more impressionable than others. Food Network seems to have a major influence in my life lately.