Apologies for the dreadful pun above. Be warned - it won't be the last. As I'm sitting here in an oasis of calm and trying not to contemplate being swept back up tomorrow morning into the raging torrent of madness* that is work, I remembered that in a few days time Sonar Festival gets underway again in Barcelona.
I'm not going, although I would like to be there - whether for the festival itself, or just to soak up some more of the wondrous city which acts as its host. I last went there in 2003 and had a very memorable time (not least because I was sober throughout).
The main memory which springs to mind right now (bearing in mind the final sentence in the first paragraph) is of the last morning I was there. I'd just checked out of the hotel and was walking up the Rambla towards the Placa de Catalunya, from where I would be boarding the connecting bus for the airport.
I was walking quite slowly and, for a moment or two, I ground to a halt. I looked around me.
At the time, I had a few spare quid in the bank. Not a huge amount, but enough to keep me going for a little while. At that point I was unhappy at work (this seems to be a common theme on this blog) - I had loved the job but something had knocked out of me my enthusiasm for it a few months beforehand.
I had no dependents, no property. No overwhelming desire to go back to work, to small mindedness, to so many things which, when away from England for just a few days, seem to reflect on it very cruelly.
I was working out in my head how long I might be able to afford to stay in Barcelona, and reckoned I could be ok for a few months at least.
I was starting to think what I'd be able to do during that time, where it might take me. It was vague, unformed, but that was part of the excitement. Tantalising stuff. All in an instant, frozen on the spot halfway up La Rambla. Willing myself to turn round and head back down there.
Then I heard my name called by one of my friends up ahead. It broke me out of my reverie, and I continued onwards towards the bus, and ultimately back home to England.
I'm not one for sitting around thinking "if only" about things in life. At times like this, though, this is definitely the exception. What could have changed if I'd acted on impulse in that one moment?
I'll never know.
*I'm not using the term "madness" in relation to my clients, by the way, I'm talking about work itself.