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I passed my Life in the UK test! I wish it meant that I was now a citizen; alas it doesn’t – next I need to put together everything for the actual application. There’s an ominous message on the application web page: ‘It may take longer than the usual 6 months to get a decision because of coronavirus (COVID-19).’

Outdated coronavirus PSAs grate on me, if you’d like to know another thing that annoys me. I feel convinced there will be a few cafes and libraries and such a decade from now that still have a dog-eared photocopy A4 taped to their door saying ‘Please wear a mask’. Some people just seem to have become blind to their surroundings. How can you work somewhere every day and not think that it might be counterproductive to warn potential customers that only two are allowed in AT ANY TIME and you can forget about using cash?

I’m cranky because I’ve had a bad night’s sleep. It was one of those nights where the boys took turns to suddenly scream at the top of their lungs for just long enough for one of us to decide it’s time to go help, get out of bed, grope our way to their bedroom door… and then they’re back asleep. I should have known – the night before was perfect and totally uninterrupted. There’s a price to pay for those kinds of favours.

Earlier in the autumn, in anticipation of busy times at work, I resolved to go to bed earlier, but I didn’t stick to it. I reasoned to myself that I actually needed the time between the kids’ bedtime and mine to relax and do some jobs. What I managed to forget was that tiredness doesn’t just manifest as feeling sleepy, but, more disruptively, as inability to focus and stay motivated to try. So I’m going to revisit the revolutionary idea of trying to get more sleep in order to feel better.

At one point in the night the wake-ups were so frequent that I stopped trying to sleep and read my book instead. I really like The Ink Black Heart now – the (fictional) online abuse is still quite unpleasant to dwell on, but there’s a fun element to being a fly on the wall to internet drama as well. The interpersonal dynamics of the mods of the online game Drek’s Game in the book reminds me of some The Sims 2 community drama I sometimes liked to lurk around.

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