So panic sets in – that stupid, irrational sort of panic which says, “They’ll make you an outcast because you haven’t bought a new item of clothing since 2007,” or, “They’ll hate you because your bag has been mended a thousand times and is literally held together by a single thread.”

I don’t know why I get like this – I’m inevitably fine, and I’m actually pretty good at talking to people, despite my deep, underlying contempt for the species as a whole. It’s not the change of pace in work-life that bothers me – frankly, this is going to be a step down compared to my usual mad rush from pillar to post throughout the day. It’s the bag that fills me with a sense of dread.

I like to have everything I need, contained and within easy reach. I like to have space to throw my jacket should I get too warm, and somewhere to stash a spoon for the afternoon break, when I consume my packed lunch which I didn’t have at noon because of the tempting canteen food. Waste not want not, afterall. Most of all, I like to be able to fit everything I need to carry into one convenient parcel so I’m not worrying about leaving more than one thing behind.

And my folder doesn’t fit in my mended bag. It’s killing me.

Especially because I have a new sewing machine just waiting to be tried, and some PERFECT spring-green Kath Kidston fabric which would make a glorious tote. I even have some cream cotton to line it with and it would Fit The Folder In It.

But it’s getting late – I have writing to finish and I am being ridiculous. No one will care about my bag and the fact it doesn’t hold my ring binder. I don’t need another bag anyway. I just don’t want to turn up for the first day of what promises to be a good, long-lasting career sort of job with my Pucca lunch box, my Haynes wallet and my rainbow-stripe crochet bag. And though I LOVE all of those things with a passionate, great love that will last through the ages, it will look as though a teenage emo wardrobe has thrown up on me.

I hate starting new jobs. I think I’ll call in sick.

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