The Interior Designer’s Alternative Weekend

In theory, one of the advantages of self employment if you’re running a business that doesn’t require you to “man the shop” at specified hours, is the ability to pick and choose the times at which you work.

Of course, I can only talk to suppliers between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday, but much of my work could actually be done any time, day or night, weekday or weekend.

The theory goes that you can choose to work on a wet Sunday and then take the day off on a sunny Wednesday.  But how often does that happen?  The answer is almost never!  In fact, in my case, I am often to be found working on wet weekend days, AND then all the weekdays in between too, whether they’re sunny or not…..

The beach at Trelissick

Despite working extremely long hours, there’s still that little niggle of guilt if I take some time off during the normal working week.

The daft thing is that during my working week, I’m often out of the office, visiting clients and attending site meetings.  And yet, if I’m out of the office on a “schoolday” enjoying some precious time off, I can feel almost as guilty as the schoolchild caught playing truant, even though anyone leaving me a phone message or an email won’t actually know if I’m on a building site or on our boat!

Evening anchorage at St Mawes

This week though, I’ve kicked the niggle of guilt into the long grass and we’ve just enjoyed what I call a “Sunday & Monday weekend”.

Saturday in Cornwall was wet all day so I sat in my office drawing up electrical layout plans for a current project, uninterrupted of course, by phone calls or emails, as everyone else was on the weekend.

Sunday dawned bright and sunny and we headed off to our boat and sailed along the south coast of Cornwall. But as everyone else headed home with that familiar Sunday evening, back-to-work-tomorrow feeling, so we enjoyed a glorious evening at anchor in St Mawes.

The glorious view down the Carrick Roads from Trelissick House

Monday blessed us with lovely weather too, as we sailed up to Trelissick, where I walked through the bluebell woods, renewed my National Trust membership and took a quick look for the first time inside the house, which has only relatively recently been open to the public.

I shall return soon for a longer visit, but in the meantime,

The elegant interior of the house

The beautiful orangery

Yes, I caught up on my emails for an hour first thing this morning and checked up on them at lunchtime again, but it didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the rest of the day and I was back home in time to check if there were any urgent calls or emails that needed to be answered before 5pm.

So as we head  towards summer, I’m hoping to embrace the “alternative weekend” a little more often, knowing that I’ll be all the fresher to work hard on the many exciting projects I have on the go, when I am back at my desk.

A huge wisteria in Trelissick garden

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