I want to share this story as there may be some of you who can relate to some of these thoughts and feelings. I'll try to keep it as short as I can (and sound as little like a jerk as possible)...
-Around the same time my tabletop gaming hobby exploded, we downsized from our century home (of 15yrs) to renting a small, simple home with lots of nature around. It was a goal to simplify our lifestyle.
-In the simplifying process, we downsized from owning three small businesses, to two and combined them under one roof in the building we own here in town.
-We absolutely love our small home, and are very happy. That's the type of family we are. We don't need or want big and fancy. Just small and simple so we can enjoy the little things in life. However, with a smaller home comes less gaming space, and less space for my collection to get too out of control (a positive-negative.. 🤣)
-My primary gaming space is our large harvest table in the kitchen. Although some of my small-footprint games can be played in the office on the computer desk or art desk.
-My oldest daughter has always been a hard worker, and last year started her own side business in addition to her regular job, which meant when she needed more creation space than was available in her room at times, she would be spread out on the kitchen table, which some days limited my ability to get a game to the table. All good - We're very proud of her.
-In February this year, we created a space in our studio building for her so she could have her own creative space, and also help design things for our businesses as well. We all love her being there for a variety of reasons. 😃
-That being said, once she got settled into our building, I thought to myself; "With the exception of dinner time, I bascially have access to the table whenever I'd like".
You'd think with a wife and two daughters, I should know better than to think I'd be right with those thoughts .... 🤣
Since we're in our third lockdown here in Ontario, Canada (also meaning the third time we've had to close our businesses) my wife brought her work home. Many days she's been spread out on the kitchen table. 😯 After ordering Rise of Fenris, I've had the urge to finish my "Scythe Bingo Campaign" before it arrives (which is now this Sunday! Woo Hoo!!!). However, access to the table has been tough.
Yesterday, I finally was able to play. My wife, planned to keep the table clear for me after lunch so I could play (she gets me... 😉). But when I came home from my walk, ready to take on the Automa, my oldest daughter was home and painting at one end of the table (because why would she paint in the office on the art desk!?!?!? That wouldn't make sense...🙄 ) "I left you space to play still" she said. I bit my tongue and chose not to remind her that we have an art desk to do, ya know, art stuff.
In my head, I was going to sit down, relax and immerse myself into a game or two. But living with my wife and daughters, I know them and I know what will happen in situations like this. Sure enough, not long into my first game, my oldest starts talking. She's talking about some local houses on the market (because real estate prices here in Canada are insane now!). I was trying to maintain composure and just answer briefly and not mean; but all I wanted to do was play my game. Then, my wife came into the kitchen and the conversation carried on, which then led into more conversations, which then brought in my 12-year old daughter as well. Help!
While my focus dwindeled and frustration was setting in, I've learned to not get upset (because you'll never win against the ladies of the house), I went to get my noise cancelling headphones and put on some ambient music so I could just play and focus on my game.
I'm not trying to sound like an ass or a bad father. I'd like to think I'm not either of those things. But this situation reminded me of a few things when it comes to gaming and about my personality;
- I love people. My job is working with people everyday. I also enjoy my alone time each day. And because of my work, I think it's important to have that time to yourself each day, as much as it's important to have the social interaction.
- As much as we love a small simple home (which will never change), it reminded me of the importance of a dedicated space for gaming. Somewhere I can close a door, and be to myself when I want with minimal distractions if any.
-It reminded me of how much solo-gaming is becoming a bigger passion than I ever expected; whether there's conversations going on in the room while I'm playing my solo game, or whether I'm playing multiplayer and people are talking about anything BUT the game (So frustrating!) ... it's a huge pet peeve of mine. Talking about the game is totally cool, but anything else... 😠 It's just not the time!
-It also reminded me of the importance of variety in your collection. I'm a huge fan of heavy games, and big beautiful games that take up table space (Scythe, Caverna, Raiders of the North Sea etc...) But having some smaller footprint games that can be played in a few different spaces is a good thing too.
I'm I just becoming a grumpy person, or can anyone relate to some of this??