Another good night’s sleep, what is going on? Got up to porridge and a sausage roll for breakfast; I declined the roll because it seemed too dry and my appetite wasn’t good enough to eat it. Some of the food has been really good here but there are one or two meals that I find too sweet or too salty. It’s not a problem because there is plenty of fruit and I can ask the cooks to make something else for me. Most of the others seem to love it all though – perhaps its the meds that are affecting my appetite.
After my post breakfast chat and fag I decided to attend the art workshop: I had a plan so I did my own thing and started to have an idea of what I wanted to do. It started off with wanting to portray an ex soldier amongst ‘normal’ and judgemental people but it turned into a squad of soldiers and their commander stood by a mass grave. I combined a collage of adverts and headlines from some glossy magazines. Freaky how it just changed itself and transformed before my eyes. Judge for yourself. The time just shot passed and it was lunchtime in a blink and I had a finished painting in front of me.
After lunch of mushroom soup and bread I read a little in a cool book that the therapist has given me to read while I am here (must get it when I get home): The Compassionate Mind, Paul Gilbert. It explains anxiety in a way that appeals to me and uses Buddhism as an example for some of the concepts. The second part of the book is full of practical exercises and meditations to help you to work on yourself. My eyes got tired just as it was time to join the walking group; as this was my last day I felt motivated to join most of the activities. There is a daily timetable of activities such as cooking, art, walking, cinema, quizzes, knockout pool, etc. I felt no compulsion to join in anything and could have easily sat in my room all day (but I’m sure someone would have checked up on me to see if I was alright) or watched non-stop TV. I wanted to get out of the house for a while so I went with three others in the minibus to Ayr Park for a walk around. It was lovely to be around trees again after so long (not many trees in Orkney) and to see and hear a wide variety of wildlife. We strolled gently on the path and chatted and enjoyed the scenery. We also had a quick look in the garden’s gallery but it didn’t hold our interest for long.
Back to Hollybush again just in time for a tasty fish and chips dinner – I wolfed it down. I went back to reading my book in the warm central hall until it was time for knockout pool: you have five lives and take turns trying to pot a ball. If you miss a hole, you lose a life. The last one ‘in’ wins. I won the first but not the other three. Seems a pretty boring game but it was good to be with others and not feel forced to make conversation or to aggressively compete.
So, in all it was a pretty plain day. However, I felt calm and peaceful; and in good company.
Now, off to watch a film and head off for, hopefully, another good night’s sleep.