Okay, it's official. One week of stress will completely erase any relaxing effects of a three week vacation - and then some. I'm tired, depressed, and so mind-boggingly irritated it took me three whole hours to marshal enough curiosity to get online again. Plus I have, for the first time in months, completely switched off my Blackberry - as in disabling mail delivery to it.

I also very nearly left my work laptop chained to my desk (but realised I needed it to test a Windows Mobile gadget, so I reluctantly brought it along). When that happens, it will be an absolute first - fear.

Then there's the old habits - having foregone coffee for the past month or so, I suddenly have a craving for bits of hot brown, muddy sludge frothing in a ceramic thimble, open air and, above all, an end to the madness.

Time to re-evaluate my strategy - I'll start by blotting out all sensless interruptions, finish zapping all non-essential e-mail, and re-schedule my to-dos according to my priorities instead of the mindlessly erratic ones I've been given over the past five days.

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