Making your peace with the world around you, and more particularly with the life you’ve led, is not always an easy thing to do. We all makes mistakes after all, and believe me when I tell you I’ve made more than my fair share already. I like to say that I don’t have regrets, but I’m not sure I’m being completely honest with myself. What I really mean when I say that is that I wouldn’t change anything, but it isn’t really the same thing. I wouldn’t change any of the decisions I’ve made along the way because to change even the smallest one of them would mean accepting a new life with unpredictable consequences. I wouldn’t have my daughter for example. I would almost certainly never have met the man who has become my most trusted friend in the world. And, given the almost impossibly unlikely chain of events that led to my meeting her, it’s a stone cold certainty that I would never have encountered the woman I love.
Not wanting to change any of the decisions you have made is an easy thing to say if you like where you are in your life at the moment, and that, at least for me, has become a bit of a contradiction these past few weeks. What happens for example, if one of the many thousands of decisions that led you to your current happiness is also responsible for your refusal to accept that same goddamn good fortune? It’s a puzzler innit?
Now try to bear with me here because I’m trying to explain, in my own twisted way, why I have been missing from this blog for a few weeks.
When I was 17 years old I did something that seemed like the right decision at the time. I won’t bore you with too many details… Suffice it to say that I left somewhere with a cheeky smile on my face at the thought of being a stranger in a strange new place. It appealed to me (laugh all you like, but I was a teenager and I stick by that excuse). A couple of years later a situation cropped up, which was not entirely my fault this time, and the same thing happened again. “I can do this!” I thought. “I’ve done it before… It’ll be fun!” and off I went. The next place was not to my liking at all and before long I did it again… and again… and again! I am now at my 26th address, living on someone’s sofa, with people much younger than myself.
Now if none of this seems relevant to my current situation perhaps that is unsurprising; it didn’t seem relevant to me until a few weeks ago, when I had cause to say something like “…because that’s who I am isn’t it? I’m the guy who wanders in and out of people’s lives and leaves no impression.” I kept a relatively calm expression on my face at the time (I hope), but at the moment I said it I instantly thought Shit! Is that right? Is that who I think I am these days?
You see the problem I’m having is that I am now happy. I love most of the people in my life. I love the lady in my life very much and, perhaps even stranger still, I love the people in her life. This has led me to a bout of misery because I seem to have got into a position where I more or less just expect it to end at any moment. It is that misery that has kept me from this blog for the last few weeks, and it’s time I grew up!
Still… there comes a time in every man’s life when he’s lying beneath a beech tree in England, trying in vain to read a Swedish newspaper, and he sees an elderly man walking down an otherwise deserted country lane, pushing a Yorkshire Terrier in a baby-buggy. The world grows silent for a moment, and time seems to stand still as all the swirling, tumultuous fragments of his life stop moving and go “Wha..?”.
These rare moments of clarity are the ones which make you laugh and smile, and remind you what a strange and wonderful place the world really is. And… if you’re quick and careful… you can use these precious seconds to creep up behind all the broken bits of your mind and club them over the head with a big, fat, sweaty lump of common sense! Then, when you have them all gagged and tied up in the same place, you can say “OK guys… I’ve let you run riot in here for a long, long time, and we’ve all had a lot of fun, but I really need to talk to you about something.”
Since I last wrote here, I’ve been interrogated by a bus-load of Finnish drunks – Escorted into hospital with kidney stones, by a man with a snapped wrist, who had only been discharged the day before (thanks Richie) – Stuck on the tarmac at Skavsta while Ryanair crew attempted to discover the identity of the passenger who wasn’t supposed to be aboard – Attended May bonfires and 80th birthday celebrations – Met more of Amki’s relatives than I have seen of my own in over 30 years (and just when I think I’ve met them all, 2 of them wait till I go home to give birth to another!) – I’ve been measured for a suit by a man who wouldn’t seem out of place in Royston Vasey… and had many more emotional and scary moments besides.
None of these things are excuses for my long absence. If I was going to make up an excuse it would almost certainly have had more lasers and exploding, psychic zombies, riding in on Great White Sharks. No… it is simply my usual, long-winded way of saying “I’m tired of this now”, and of getting, finally, to the hysterical irony that followed my recent revelation:
In order to break this juvenile habit, and make my current situation more stable… I have decided to make the biggest move yet, and travel to a stranger new place than ever before.
Talk about saving the best for last!
Yes… I suppose most of you saw this coming before I did, but I have now started looking for work across the water, in Sweden. None of this is certain of course… it depends on finding work there, which may take a long time, or it may not happen at all.
What it does mean is, that I may take the blog in a new direction, OR… I may simply make a new one. I’m still going to try getting the novel published, and I still hope to find a more workable theme for the YouTube channel, but at this point I’m thinking that either the channel or the blog, or both, will be heavily influenced by my attempts to get work in, and move to, another country.
So there you go. If I’ve given you anything new to think about, then… I’m sorry! Go back to your Sunday and forget about it. If you’ve had similar experiences, please share them; I’m sure I can’t be the only nomadic loony on WordPress.
For now though… It’s good to be back.
See you soon, and don’t bend over for the soap!