Friday, November 30, 2012

Better Day

It seemed to be a better day today and I'm a bit more positive and feeling a little bit better about things.  That was until I wrote, or rather started to, the family newsletter for insertion with the Christmas Cards.  I got to the bit about my dad and had to stop and just take 5 minutes to stop feeling bad about those last few days of his life.  I'll not forget what day it was and in many ways I knew when I left him the week before that it probably was the last time I'd see him, alive that is. Mind you I decided not to see him when I eventually got up there, in many ways I wanted to remember him in another way.  

I've almost finished the newsletter now and I guess these thoughts come and slap you around the face when you least expect them to.  It's getting towards Christmas - a time he loved - and he wont be there.  I'm going up in a few weeks for a couple of days - such is my diary that I'm blocked out a lot in the next few weeks and don't actually have a weekend free.  I've been out for most of the last two weeks as well which gives an indication of my diary.

Better Day

Ah, well the sun is out, it's mighty cold though and the frost hasn't gone yet except where the sun has dissolved it :-)

I'm still waiting for Christmas to arrive (my two outstanding parcels) but having missed my meeting this morning waiting in for them, L has now called and wants a lift from the station - which is fine but what if I miss my delivery?  I won't be happy about that at all.  

I've a better feeling about things at the moment and I put that down to the weather and to beginning to see various avenues open to me.  I am trying to put together a number of possibilities that will allow me to work on a number of projects at once.  The ideas just need to crystallise in my head a bit more before I test them out.  I'm hoping to pull together a way of commencing short and long term projects together which would balance income and allow me to work on the long term stuff ready for that to take over in due course.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Walk Forwards, Don't Look Back...

Not sure if that is right or not?  It's a thing I have difficultly doing anyway but there's a good point here about you can learn from what's happened but you mustn't dwell on things that perhaps you regret.  These things have happened and they are in the past and as much as you may regret decisions or outcomes, you cannot do anything now to change them.  You can of course learn and move on.

Behind lies a path that's trodden and is now history, it contains many good and some not so good times but it's the past.  They say your past can catch up to you and it felt a bit like that last night.  I felt myself staring at one of the young ladies (but I probably wasn't) as she looked so familiar to someone I knew 35 or more years ago.  It was a bit of a shock actually now I've had a chance to think about it.

Anyway, looking forward is the next thing and who can say what will happen and how things will pan out.  I feel that I'd like to have a different type of life to what I have now.  I want to spend free time doing pleasurable things and not having the one eyed god playing in the corner of the room.  Then again, I'd enjoy that but would other people - is that their vision and what they want out of life?  I fancy a place of fine wine, good sounds, nice food. good friends etc.  That just doesn't happen - getting in from work all stressed out and the last thing you want to do is to chill out (that's not me talking).

The way forward isn't fully clear to me but there's some key components that I'd like to see and these include spending time actually enjoying the time off work and when we are in the same house.  I've barely seen Mrs. F. for well over a week now and I admit it being a partial plan of mine to instil into both of us what it will be like for me to no longer be around once again like I used to be 10 years and more ago when I worked away and whilst that was happening, fed the family pretty well too.  No it's more for me to evaluate what being alone might be like and also for Mrs. F. to be reminded of the past and what it used to be like before I became ill.

I'm not advocating playing away from home but I am saying that absence is helping me think things through.  It's a bit annoying that I have to be at home tomorrow now as I really wanted to go to the History Society meeting in the Village. - I might sleep on that or hope that delivery arrives in the morning and I can get to go.

I'm now away from formulating strategies and into testing my hypothesis to see if it will fit.  

Shake Down

This morning I've chased up my last two presents - one is a replacement and one is outstanding.  That will then be all my presents sorted out.  I can now get on with the Newsletters and the Christmas Cards and just getting ready.

Another job came through today but this is the same ones who had the job in Wimbledon and never ever got back to me about it and do I've consigned it to the delete bin.  

I'm busy transferring tracks from cassettes (remember them?) to MP3.  This is quite easy using Audacity and just uploading them to my backup server thingy.  I have no idea if these are actually worth anything to anyone, I have hundreds of them lying around but not for much longer as I want rid of them.  I have a load of vinyl which also needs to be sorted out and recorded before getting rid of them too.  Some of them have a value and so I might try and sell them on.  Certainly some of the early Promos I have may be valuable to the right buyer.

I had a good night last night and I'm out again tonight, it's keeping me distracted I suppose.  I continue working on some ideas for the New Year and I hope that I'll have something finalised in the next few weeks or at least a way forward.  As I suggested before it requires things to be stable at this end to get on and do these things and it requires me to get my head into the right frame of mind too.


Is my one fall-back and today I just hit the button and this came on:

"Fix You"

When you try your best, but you don't succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can't sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can't replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you're too in love to let it go
But if you never try you'll never know
Just what you're worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face
And I...

Tears stream down your face
I promise you I will learn from my mistakes
Tears stream down your face
And I...

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Now Coldplay are a band that you either like or not (Marmite) but I quite like them as a stadium band but this is one of my favourite songs.  It was one of the songs I listened to as I went for my operation - the first one - the one that saved my life.  Today it is as powerful as it was then, generally it grabs me and stirs me up and makes me cry but somehow in an uplifting way.  Strange that it should play tonight of all nights.  

Then this came on:

                                                                     "The Scientist"

Come up to meet you, tell you I'm sorry
You don't know how lovely you are
I had to find you, tell you I need you
Tell you I set you apart
Tell me your secrets, and ask me your questions
Oh let's go back to the start
Running in circles, coming up tails
Heads on a science apart

Nobody said it was easy
It's such a shame for us to part
Nobody said it was easy
No one ever said it would be this hard
Oh, take me back to the start.

I was just guessing at numbers and figures
Pulling the puzzles apart
Questions of science, science and progress
Don't speak as loud as my heart
And tell me you love me, come back and haunt me
Oh and I rush to the start
Running in circles, chasing our tails
Coming back as we are

Nobody said it was easy
Oh it's such a shame for us to part
Nobody said it was easy
No one ever said it would be so hard
I'm going back to the start

Ooooohhhhhhh [x4]

Exactly.  Blue eyes haunt me...

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Something Different

Went  out tonight with some friends - 3 guys and 3 gals.  It was a really good night and a little bizarre too.  We started at my local and had a good few beers and then had a nice Curry and just enjoyed each others company.

I have to say that I'm really taken with one of the gals as she reminds me so much of a girl I knew way, way, way back in my youth.  She has the looks and the most amazing eyes and it was really nice to see her - I hadn't expected her to turn up at all.  It was just a nice evening out and my local Indian restaurant did us very well even to the point where I asked for a spare glass for my friend and they were very pleased to give that to me gratis.

They are nice guys at the restaurant but it is obvious that they use it as a training ground for the young waiters who must progress on to bigger and greater things.

So, here I am, I have no idea what to make of the evening other than it was very enjoyable.  Yikes, this girl/lady has the most hypnotic blue eyes, great sense of humour and turned up when I wasn't expecting it.  I have absolutely no idea what it all means anyway as I'm so screwed up at the moment and I don't get any signals whatsoever.....

Damn wouldn't it be good if for once it was all obvious to me what to do?  

My Mum woke me up this morning

Which is pretty impressive as she lives a good 120+ miles away :-)  Actually she called me just gone 10 and I was fast asleep :-)  I must have dozed back to sleep and I'm not surprised as I was tired yesterday and from the exertions of the past week.

I'm wrestling with a balance problem - not in my body but in what I do next.  It was nice to have a chat with this chap yesterday about his company woes and in some ways I'd enjoy being back in that sort of situation again although he needed to kick some arse frankly and lay the law down - I'd have enjoyed doing this sort of thing...

No what has been bugging me is that I reckon I have some plans that I would like to do to raise some funds and keep the metaphorical Wolf from the door.  They rely heavily on being in this house or having full support from everyone.  These aren't direct employment opportunities nor will they raise cash from day one - perhaps day 90 or 120 but certainly not straight away.  They involve remodelling my office and taking up space in either the garage or shed both of which are storing large amounts of stuff that isn't being used.  However, if we were to move elsewhere that may not be possible.

Once again, I am reminded that I need to sort both things out not just one for each is reliant on the other to some extent.  

It's all in your mind

"Mr. Tweedy, all in your mind!"  - good old Chicken Run - a harmless piece of entertainment if ever there was.

I've been troubled by many thoughts in these past few years, it's getting worse and and whilst I have a potential resolution to these I am actually uncertain if it will actually resolve things.  I'm being obtuse on purpose at the moment as I'm exploring scenarios and thinking things through very thoroughly, such is my way.  I'm normally like this but then normally it is to do with business and not personal life.

As I write, Bridge over Troubled Water has just come on - poignant indeed.  Most, if not all of the problems I have are almost without exception my problems.  The reason I say that is that it was my illness that led me to make some fundamental changes and those changes place me at the centre of that change, no one else has been asked to change and neither do I want my illness to change them.

That was difficult to write and it still isn't clear is it?  Let's try again.  The person most affected by Bladder Cancer was me.  Whatever the outcome, life would continue in a normal and predictable way because there was nothing that the remainder of the family could possibly do to affect the outcome even if they had changed their lifestyles it wouldn't have made a jot of difference to my fortune in surviving.  If we assume that everyone was travelling along in the same general direction at the time of diagnosis, things were going well enough and life functioned much as it had done for many years.  Post diagnosis, it is as if I am a totally different person, I still have my absurd sense of humour and if anything I am a much lighter touch person, far more tolerant than I was and generally a much nicer all around human being.  But that isn't the actual point still.  I am changed in terms of outlook and attitude and now more than ever struggling to work out what I am going to do next.  As such, I look to have diverted off the general direction everyone else was travelling in.  I'm off some side road (perhaps a cul de sac) trying to get my new Sat Nav to work properly.  I have a vision of how things could be in the future and the frightening thing is that I doubt anyone will understand or appreciate what I want or why I should want it. Why the hell should they, it isn't about them it is about me and the last thing I want is to impose my new sets of values, principles and ideas on them.

I'm full of great ideas and things that I could do but I do not see these being huge money spinners nor do I see them being much more than some sort of fantasy at the moment.  I hated going up to London (and back) the other day it was uncomfortable to say the least.  My claustrophobia is taking more effort to control and I am I'm not getting things done despite having time to do things - I spend time at the moment researching various ideas and trying to see if they are feasible or just pipe dreams.

In essence though I'd like to work for myself and in two or three areas that look as if they could complement each other but I'd need to make sure that the conditions will be available for them.  I can only see them being successful if I have the full cooperation of the family and I currently doubt that I do have that.  So it's a bit of a double edged sword in the fact that I probably can't do what I want to do without cooperation which I currently may not have.  Urggghhh, it's just so difficult to get some sort of plan together, it's probably more complicated than the biggest projects I've ever handled :-) The Risk profile is horrendous too.  

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thinking - I do too much of it

Interesting conversation - yes not quite what I thought it might be so silly old me thinking too much as usual.  Had a nice chat with business colleague of a friend and helped (I think) get their thinking straight.  They can come back and chat some more, where upon my business partner was around and we went out for a late coffee after the call I had.

Funny as we were driving back, a head hunter called him so I left the car and him too it at my house - hopefully it will be a good job opportunity for him, after all, he deserves something good to happen to him.

I've been a bit of a grumpy today, not happy with something or other, not happy with Mrs. F and I backed out of a couple of one-liners I was about to deliver as they weren't appropriate nor were they "big or clever" :-)  If you can't say anything nice don't say anything at all I suppose.

Had some of my deliveries turn up today but unfortunately so badly packed that one of the chocolate items was smashed to pieces.  It was a particularly badly packed parcel I'd say.    The customer service experience isn't great and I think it would help these guys immensely if they saw the Amazon model which I've never had a problem with.  

Mrs. F is out for a short while which gives me a nice quiet time to calm down prior to her return although in reality going out for a couple of coffees and a chat have done.

Frosty Morning

Indoors that is :-) It hasn't been a great morning here but Mrs. F. has now shot off to do shopping and see her mum and stuff so that's OK.  I am sat here at the PC wondering whether I should follow my star sign this morning (I have a desktop thing that has a daily Horoscope on it - what possessed me to look at it today I don't know).

"Relationships can be a source of pain now, yet opening your heart in the presence of potential hurt could earn the rewards of intimacy. This is not an easy process, for your tendency is to protect your sensitive feelings from being wounded. Showing your vulnerability to someone you love is the first step on the journey to healing today."

How bizarre is that? :-)

Anyway, I've been doing a bit more work on reviewing my options and I suppose that I ought to have some of those chats I said I ought to have.  Of course, it is typical, I got a call last night from someone who has some potential work for me.  Idiot me I didn't turn it down but said I'd have a chat today with them.  Where's all that assertive stuff I used to be made of gone?  Down the toilet with my confidence and everything else I reckon :-)

Monday, November 26, 2012

Out and About with Flocky

It was nice to get some time with Flocky.  He's a good chap and a good listener and a good confident too.  I certainly needed some vent for my frustration at ending up on the Thursday night soaked through!  But it's happened before - I've ended up having to work out a way to get home because no one will come out for me - but then that's par for the course, I'm sure if it was them and I did that I wouldn't hear the last of it.

Then there's a little fact that is also interesting and that's that until last night I hadn't actually spoken to Mrs. F since Tuesday - well not to have a conversation that is.   What contact has been made has been by Text.  There's nothing particularly wrong in this, it is usual.  However, not sure that everyone else finds it usual.

So there we have it - I've had a good weekend - not sure I'd want to do anything quite as crazy as flying there again but you never know.  It was good fun.  Flocky didn't come to Scotland but maybe next year - it is good fun....

Recovery Mode

There is something rather special about being driven home in one of these beasts.  The miles just flash by and the ride is smooth and effortless and you hear hardly any noise.  The temptation to floor it would be too much for me :-)  I'd lose my licence in about 25 miles! :-)

It was the culmination of quite a weekend.  On Thursday I had been in London and got soaked on the way home and by the time that no one had wanted to pick me up and I'd got home, I needed to dry out my suit, jacket, shoes and overcoat.  As luck would have it, my Regalia, in a case remained dry but my umbrella was wet and wind damaged :-(  It took quite a while to dry things out and as luck would have it, by 2 am or thereabouts I was able to assemble things together so that in the morning I could do final packing and not have a damp bag.

Flocky picked me up on Friday morning and we (well he) drove to Southampton.  We were able to book into our Hotel early but we hadn't counted on no lift and so we were confronted with 3 flights of stairs and a long walk to our rooms.  This would come back to haunt us.  We went to TGIF for lunch which was very nice indeed, although I'm no great lover of chain outlets it was OK.  We then headed back, got showered and changed for the meeting at the nearby Novotel.  When we got there we found out that there were some double bookings and we had to get to the 5th floor to change.  I managed the first lift up but elected to walk down and walk up and down again as I really didn't like the idea of getting 6 or 7 of us in a lift at a time and there were well over 200 brethren there.  We then took our cases to our Hotel (next door) and had to go up and down 3 flights of steps!  At this point I realised how unfit I was :-)

We had a nice meal and I was fortunate to sit next to an old friend of mine who was my Committee Chair when I was at the Charity, he had just had a Scan as he has Prostate Cancer and they need to make a decision on what to do about that.  So we chatted about that and many other things too.  He was good company and he held a high office in the Province but as Flocky said he really was a nice chap and very good company indeed.  
On Saturday Flocky took me to Southampton Airport - a mere 4 miles from our Hotel but that took us close to 20 minutes because of the Traffic Lights!  It was a nice little airport and I spent time in the Coffee Lounge watching the planes taking off and landing.  I was meant to be in a Flybe  Embraer E-195 aircraft but over a period of weeks my flight had been put back almost 2 hours and I actually flew on a Bombardier Dash 8 Q400, which was a bit disappointing but there you go we made Glasgow in great time - 1 hour and 15 minutes I think.  I had to admit to not feeling particularly good on the flight or a couple of times during the day suffering with what felt like Angina!

I was met at the airport by one of the Scots Lodge members and driven the 30 or so minutes to Strathaven Hotel where I met my colleagues in good time for a double Glenmorangie to be thrust in to my hands and the day to really begin.

In Southampton and the South of England it had been raining constantly but it was quite pleasant in Scotland however that changed overnight and we managed to get particularly wet getting home at 3 in the morning!!  YES, 3 in the morning.  We had a lovely meeting and meal followed by a Harmony (a sort of self put on show - the Bag Pipes (3 master of Pipes) were just amazing - I will see if I can get some photos on here.  My friend and I did our two sketches - one in the main hall and the Nelson sketch in the pub afterwards!  The first was funny but the second (whether through drink or otherwise) brought the house down - the props just added to the fun.

All too soon, the evening was beginning to get quite boisterous and around 2:30 we decided to get back to the Hotel.  After we said our goodbyes we headed up the hill (more like a mountain).  Once again, I was out of breath but my colleague, who has Asthma and other chest complaints was suffering in the cold and the dampness as it was chucking it down with rain and it could only have been a handful of degrees.  We got back about 3 or just past but by the time I was ready to hit the sack it was 3:20 - I didn't need any bedtime story I can tell you - I was out like a light.  This year we had breakfast at Gentlemen's hours and around 9:00 we were having a Scottish breakfast and we got on the road about 10:30 or 10:40 - the journey home was only eventful when we got near Northampton where a small flood had topped the road - the car in front hit it and swerved on the edge of loss of control, a Jaguar like mine, thank goodness for 3 tons of car and all wheel drive as we certainly had some aquaplaning but the car just ploughed on nicely in control.  

I unfortunately heard the result of the World Championship in Formula 1 but not the circumstances of that win and I got home just in time to see the rerun of the Brazilian Grand Prix and it was an absolute classic which but as I knew the outcome of the overall thing I had some of the excitement (and it was exciting as he may have lost the thing on lap one - it was very lucky he didn't) mitigated by that.

I've now got some decisions to make about myself and where to go next.  I think the weekend gave me some time to think things through but in reality, what I would really like is to get my head into gear quickly and actually knuckle down and start to sort things out systematically - that's the plan - whether or not it happens is another thing altogether. :-)

What a weekend

I'll do so more later in the week but suffice it to say it was a good few days but I am very tired as I only got a little sleep between Thursday and today (Sunday).  It was good to have a long chat and time with Flocky Bicep as that helped me to crystallise some of my recent thoughts.  A crazy night out in Scotland was just what the doctor ordered and it was, indeed a fantastic meeting, meal and harmony afterwards.  Suffice it to say I got to bed around 3:20 am but actually hadn't been feeling too well for most of Saturday - not sure if it was nerves or food that made me not feel great but it did mean I didn't drink a lot and so that helped me a lot.

Then to get driven home in a 6 Litre, W12 Bentley Continental from Scotland was just sublime, the engine note is absolutely amazing and produces a smile a mail wide every time the pedal is pressed.  

I am now just sorting myself out and will probably sleep for hours tomorrow :-)  More later.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thinking of Building an Ark

It sort of follows that the US gets some sort of storm or hurricane and a few weeks later we get some sort of "weather event".  Well yesterday was like Armageddon, the heavens opened and the skies darkened and rather than walk I had to get public transport to the event.

Today, we were told that it would be a lovely sunny day and that overnight - like 2 or 3 am it would get wet and windy.  WRONG.  We had been in London, actually al fresco although it was a bit blowy earlier on but around about 9:30 all hell broke loose and the wind was driving the rain sideways so we headed to the train station and there were (unusually) lots of people around.  All the trains were delayed due to inclement weather, signal problems and on my line a broken down train.  

I need to pack the stuff I was wearing tonight ready so I can go away tomorrow - I have it all laid out drying as I'm soaked to the skin and once again the call home where three drivers and two cars on the drive went unheeded and I ended up getting a thorough soaking whilst waiting in the bus shelter and between the bus stop and home my trousers are soaked through and my umbrella is suffering from being blown inside out.  Call me a cynical bastard but you'd have thought one of them would have answered my request for a lift.  One of them actually rang me as I was on route to London asking for a lift from the station when it was dry and sunny.

Hopefully I'm not getting paranoid about this but this isn't the first time that I've ended up soaked to the skin because no one would come out.  It wasn't even that late 10:30 but there you go.  Luckily I'm away for a few days and sod them all.  At least I will be enjoying myself for the next few days and very much like this evening have a good old time to take my mind off things.

50 minutes to go

Then off to London for a Lodge meeting getting back quite late I believe then up early tomorrow with Flocky Bicep travelling to Southampton to get there for a long lunch followed by getting ready for another Lodge meeting, a few post meeting beers and then to bed up early to go to Southampton Airport in the morning and catch my flight to Glasgow to be picked up, run over to the Hotel and then off to - you guessed it another Lodge meeting followed by a meal and a Harmony where sketches, music and poems are performed and bagpipes and all sorts of things go on.  Back late - like 2 or 3 am and then being driven home to arrive home late on Sunday!  What a way to go on! :-)

I will be totally shattered come Sunday.

As I suspected

Mrs. F. was on early shift this morning so I glimpsed her leaving.  Realistically I'm now not going to see her until Sunday evening!  Oh well, it just gives me a starting situation to work from.

Communication is a key thing and the trouble is that I am (despite what you may think) quite introverted in many ways and I'm not surprisingly extremely good at soaking up all the annoyances and frustrations and can do that for years.  You don't ever want to see what I am like when I get angry or annoyed :-)

It looks like I've got a hell of a lot of work to do when I get back from Scotland but then again I knew that.  Much of the indecision and also the time taken to think this through is that it is actually quite serious.  Whilst I can't change my life in one big step and one all encompassing move, change my life is what I want but at what cost?  If I were to just please myself then everyone gets "hurt" apart from me as I get my own way -- or do I?  If I compromise, as I have done for a number of years, will I ever be happy with my lot?  In many ways I want to keep some of this life with me but maybe, just maybe that wont happen.

I don't know the answer (or maybe I intuitively do and that's why I don't want to act).  Part of me feels I should untangle the situation I'm in now and some of me yearns for a break and a clean start and yet there are so many permutations and it's just a difficult question to answer.  I don't suppose that there is an malice in the way Mrs. F. acts as she isn't like that but perhaps through getting ill I now find I need some different sort of support.  I don't know!

I'm now out and about from later today and will be heading to different places and travelling around.  The girls will be arriving back tonight and so I might bump into one or other of them, we will see but I will be back late and then off and away in the morning to Southampton, then Saturday Glasgow and then home late on Sunday.  After this - I need to work on getting things completed for Christmas.  Newsletters, Cards, presents etc all need sorting out!  At least I will have few distractions even though I am out every weekend between now and mid January!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

What a Day

Our weather forecasters (who also assure me that Global Warming is real) suggested that we would be clear of rain by lunchtime and that it would be a lovely day from mid afternoon onwards.  At around 2 pm I found myself turning on the lights as it looked like an Apocalypse was about to unload itself on us.  

I was due out and was going to walk the 2 or 3 miles or whatever it is to a meeting but ended up hanging about and then grabbing public transport.

To make matters worse after the meeting Mrs. F. kindly came and got me but it was obviously begrudgingly.  I could have got a Taxi or someone could have run me home but as it was I spent a while in the car going home trying to make conversation against the "great wall of silence".  The unfortunate thing is (I realise) that I won't be seeing Mrs. F. until late Sunday night at the earliest as I'm away now until then.  I feel bloody minded enough just to let that happen and see what the effect is.  I have a meeting that means I wont be home until midnight at the earliest tomorrow and then on Friday I'm away early in the morning and I won't be home until Sunday.

I'm neutral, almost blasé about this because - it isn't me that's dealing out the grief, far from it.  I just find that any grief fired in my direction only gets my back up further and I reciprocate in kind and add interest.  OK maybe I shouldn't do that but that's the way I'm built, that's the way I protect myself and that's just tough.

In a way, I don't care at the moment as I am out to please myself (I know that's selfish but perhaps, just maybe, I've earned that right by now).  Whatever it is, the parting has been one of no words or anything else and that's sad, I did try but that's not important I guess.  

In recent months I have been really trying to communicate and get back to some semblance of "normality" and yet despite those efforts it isn't to be.  I have a mission to sort this out when I get back from Scotland once and for all because it makes for troubled times and it ties me to an impossible plot and theme one that I cannot hope to achieve.  

Messed up again

Strange old morning - I've done a bit of work on the bathroom and just faffed about, I've printed off the scripts for the weekend jaunt to Scotland and packed the props and suddenly I feel like I've dropped off a cliff and just feel awful for no apparent reason at all.

It is a pretty strange feeling I have to say but there you go, it comes and goes like this a lot these days.  I feel a little sick in the pit of my stomach a little tight across the chest and have a dry throat and it's all in my mind it is just so debilitating - I have absolutely no interest in doing anything even though I have things to do.  This will pass a little later on I'm certain.  I was doing quite well up to now.   

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Fear Itself

It was Franklin D. Roosevelt who coined that phrase:

During his inauguration on March 4, 1933, occurred in the middle of a bank panic, hence the backdrop for his famous words: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

It is a most bizarre thing that we just beat ourselves up and invent the fear and live up to it.  Too many times I've been in that situation and my mind has got the better of me.  Sure, some of the things that have happened to me aren't nice and the weren't pleasant but fear made them worse.  Once I was "used to them" I could live with them and waiting and other indignities are now part of every visit but it doesn't bother me so much because that is the system.

I realise that my father's death did affect me in many subtle ways.  Strange things happen these days that really create a wobble in my day to day equilibrium.  

Fear is a massive factor in Cancer - I mean things like will it recur, will it be treatable, will you die and so on.  It IS frightening and it's only when people remember and tell you what I was like say 5 years ago that I realise how ill I actually was and how near I was to having a far worse time.

Setting out a vision for the future

It is always a good chat with my business partner.  Both of us had cancer at the same time and surgery overlapped by a day or two.  Mine wasn't radical surgery - his was and so we both began to spend time chatting comparing notes and it's been cathartic because we were both going through similar symptoms and reactions and so we've helped each other along the way.  He is about 6 or 7 years my junior and this is an interesting age gap - he hasn't hit 50 yet and so we have different outlooks on where to go from here.  I've said before that I really want to just take things easy, make a living but on my terms as I've had so much time for myself and my needs and wants to have that taken away is one of the areas that I can see would affect my decisions.

Currently I am waiting to hear back from one job.  It's a pretty interesting job but would mean me becoming an employee again and I just don't know that I really, deep down inside, want that.  However I need to be a realist and to set out something for sticking some money into the bank account and allowing us to eat and pay the bills.  I'm a bit of a closet artisan really - I'd love to make money by making things, pottery, paintings, photographs, crafts and so on.  Of course I very much doubt that you'd actually pay the bills doing this for a living and you'd need a series of small enterprises to keep you going.  A chap in the village paints and sells prints of the originals but he also does commissions and he runs the weekly Jazz club too.  I think he just about keeps body and soul together doing that, you see his paintings all around the local area in pubs and clubs and exhibitions.  I'd certainly like to do something like that but of course you need to find you niche and then go for it.  

I think that the genealogy business will have three peak times per year, Christmas, Father's and Mother's Day.  I can see some times when it will be quiet and then I'll need to substitute doing something else in its place and I could set up a couple of small businesses aimed at the clubs and social market.  It would be something along the line of targeted marketing and selling on personalised items that they can use for fund-raising etc.  I know there is a market or an appetite for these sorts of things as many people ask me whether I can source things like pens and personal pepper pots etc.  It might be another line to pursue especially as I have friends who are engravers and another who runs a personalisation business.

I will work on this from next week when I get back from Scotland.

Neck is a bit better

I've been using the heat bag (wheat bag) a couple of times and it seems to have worked and whilst I can still feel the strain it is a lot better.  My business partner came over today and I finally took him on the circular walk from my house.   It is slightly modified and I changed part of the route to go past the Firs and a Fallen Oak tree all whitened in the sun which I have a painting of in my front room.

It is about an hour long and we ended up at the local pub for a few beers and a sandwich - all very nice - it is what I like about living here.  I was particularly interested to listen to his experiences (similar to mine) about the current job market - it really isn't where we want to be - the Corporate jobs are just dire and in no way would use our skills and experience - perhaps we are looking in the wrong places.  The trouble is that to align with start ups is also a difficult task because of the circle of advisers that appear to mentor these people - more like the money people spreadsheet managing them.

I have made a decision that this weekend is my drop-dead date for the majority of outstanding jobs I've not heard from - if I haven't heard, then they don't exist.  I have one opportunity that I am waiting to hear from and it's only been a few days since I heard from them.  If that goes flat or cold then I think I need to spend a day or two with Mrs. F. and set out a vision of the future and see where we get to with that.  

Sunday, November 18, 2012

What on Earth have I done to my neck

I woke about 5 am and felt my neck cricked and cold :-(  It's been sore all day long - what a nightmare.  Had heat pack treatment and walking around the house in a scarf to keep it warm!

Have done almost all my shopping for Christmas on-line this afternoon - a few more things to get for Mrs. F. but maybe I can have a look at the Airport as I'll have a bit of time to kill whilst I am there as my flight has been rescheduled to be an hour and a half later.

I need to get packed and sorted out for this week - I have things to do on every day and the challenge is to make sure I have got everything sorted as I have three meetings one after the other so no time to get that wrong. 

That was good

A nice meeting and very pleasant afternoon.  I must try and get my breathing right again in these small Lodge rooms - I tend to get quite panicky right at the start in these small rooms and I was "trapped" in a corner which really didn't help much but then I realised that the fans were turning, there was a breeze and I had plenty of room to move around.  It may seem strange to you that I get like this but it is very frightening and I nearly walked out before we started but did some rationalising and also I knew that the room was plenty big enough for us and that as long as there was air circulating I'd be OK.  Better than that, I'd been in here with far more people and survived.

I need to get a grip on this situation in the New Year as it is debilitating especially on trains and the like.  I have a feeling that it has got worse recently and I wonder whether I need to just get some correctional stuff done through my hypnotherapist.  It's in the mind of course and it relates back to childhood and also a number of times I've been on crowded trains and the like.  I'm OK in a plane as I have a seat, I have air blowing on me and the plane is only crowded when people get on or off of it.

This time next week we should be getting into the swing of it - some how gone midnight last time I was in Scotland and the snow started falling like mad - we got back to the Hotel and had a small white out - mind you it was 3 in the morning!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Pulling Through

I feel that I am pulling through this period of being really down in the dumps and I'm beginning to have more ups than downs although the downs are still there.  My dreams have been amazingly vivid in the past few months and some have been disturbing, others amusing and some downright weird.  

I woke this morning in a not terribly nice place, I once again thought of my dad and him being in that hospital but once I got up and moving then things changed a bit and I felt a lot better.  I need to get myself ready to go out and as I'll be doing the driving I will be on soft drinks for the day - not a problem as such as I imagine by this time next week (and I should be in the air by then) I will have had enough to drink for a month.  This week really kicks off and I think that I'll be so full on that I won't be thinking too much about anything other than getting packed and between destinations as needed.

The good thing is that I can see that I'm a little bit brighter than I have been for a while, I've worked through a number of issues and whilst there's plenty more to do, things look a little better than they have for a while.

Attitude Change

If you've read this blog for a while you are probably as aware as I am that my "mood" is a transient thing with a life of its own.  I surf the highs and lows of life sometimes many times a day and I can be up one day and down the next for no particular reason.

Today I caught myself, quite unexpectedly, thinking about my dad and I have great vision and I could see him in his bed and he got a twinge and it hurt and I remember asking him if he needed anything for it and he said it passed pretty quickly and I found myself quite upset by this.  I was upset because he was in pain and I recollect that it was his distress that hurt me more than anything.  I wonder if a lot of this up and down is to do with his death you know?  Apart from the day he died and comforting my mum a few times in the days afterwards I've not been too bad really.  I probably appreciate that we all die and all that stuff and for various reasons whilst these things are sad they are also part of the course of life (although that's a strange word to use I suppose).

I was probably more upset than anything about the helplessness of it all in the end.  The last few months were a slow and inevitable slipping away but not without the problems associated with him being bedridden and plenty of other stuff that goes along with that.  I probably saw that and remembered that my Granddad was in hospital for a very long time too and I really don't fancy that much.  I suppose if you have enough drugs and stuff that it may not matter to you the individual.  It plays heavily on your family though.  So this vision arrived and I felt very sad for him, as I feel for anyone in distressed circumstances and that was the trigger.  It wasn't that he died, it was that he may have been in pain or suffered.  

Talking to her doctor my mum had a chat about things and it appears that dad was extremely lucky that he had only minor pain and of course they do treat that seriously and effectively.

I imagine that Christmas won't be great for my mum and she is going to my brothers for Christmas this year - she will come to Christmas with me in 2013 and so that's good.  I wanted her to come this year to us to be away from the house but there you go.  I can imagine that it wont be a great time as dad liked Christmas and had lots of lights and decorations around the house.  It wont be the same and I don't suppose my mums and my birthdays will ever be the same as he died the day before my birthday and two days after my mums.  Bless him, I don't think he knew what the days or dates were as it would have distressed him to know it was mums birthday.

Surprisingly given this today has been a lot better.  I got my morning suit trousers I've been waiting for but they weren't exactly the ones I expected and Mrs. F. has done a brilliant job shortening the legs as they arrived not completed.  I didn't order them like that but hey ho - they fit a treat now and they need braces which also turned up today which is great as I need to wear them tomorrow.  I discovered that there had been some sort of leak (probably the torrential rain we had a few months ago) that had caused my wardrobe to get slightly damp which has ruined a couple of garments and consigned one of my suits to the cleaners to see if it can be saved as it has light mould on it.  What a nuisance it also got onto both of my guitar cases which are stored there but luckily not on to the guitars themselves.

Tomorrow I am picking up my friend early and we are heading off to a Lodge meeting.  He will be driving me next weekend and so I'm happy to do this.  It also means that I won't be drinking so that is also a good thing as they drink a lot at their meetings and often that means a thick head the next morning.  Not tomorrow though!

I'm in a good mood all around even though I got the wobble about my dad midday.  Other than that all is well - but give me time - that can and does quickly change!

Friday, November 16, 2012

So when you least expect it

Well - it took about 4 weeks to ask me a simple question and now we are off and running.   Apparently a series of Tests for Verbal reasoning and numeracy.  I wondered where HR added value to the employment process :-)  I mean how crazy is this - I've run multi million pound programmes for most of my life and they want to know if I can do basic English and Maths...

Oh well, let's see what these things are. The salary is what they really wanted to discuss with me and that appears to be fine as does all the package too.   So let's now see what the process is and how long it might take.

If nothing else it will give me the opportunity to check my interview skills.

Problem:  I sounded a little laissez faire this morning and that's not good.  Note to self, don't be too cocky - only I know that I can do this - they don't :-)  

Thursday, November 15, 2012

London Buses

It;s been a strange day - I was late up last night and this morning as a consequence.  Friend G rang and had a job but typical I have a horrible diary for the rest of this year.  He had seen me bleating about a company not getting back to me.  Well they are one of the largest companies in the world and so that's fair enough I know how long these things can sometimes take.  However, I'd heard nothing from them and I was reckoning on doing my own thing.

Mrs. F. suggested we go and see the James Bond movie Skyfall which I've just come back from and very good it was too - most enjoyable.  It looks as if we might have found something that we both might do now (watch movies not become spies).  When I come out, I've got a phone call message to say that the said (extremely large global corporation) have rung and can I return the call.

That's the way of it isn't it, suddenly a number of things turn up when you least expect them!  The saying goes that you wait ages for a bus and then three turn up together - I just wonder whether I'll get the other two calls today or tomorrow :-)

Things start to get busy from tomorrow onwards I've loads of things that need to be done and little time to do them, I've got a number of visits to try and squeeze in and not a weekend free now until January.  

Pie in the Sky

I've been playing around with some models that would allow me to do some work in one area and supplement it in another way and generally "duck and dive" in the future.  This would allow me to keep options open and to do many things and to have avenues of "opportunity" and to allow some level of flexibility too.

The plan involves weaving 4 or 5 different things and building on each as and when appropriate.  For example, I imagine that there are certain times of year where Genealogy becomes of interest to people.  About this time of year as a gift of a researched family tree or perhaps a nice hand crafted family tree with neat calligraphy and gold leaf etc.  As a trained draughtsman that shouldn't be a problem to me.  The main thing is to be able to respond to waves of work and to also, more importantly, generate work throughout the year if possible.  

I've other side lines that I might pursue with other people I know and each isn't a full time thing more a burst of work every now and then and so I think I could weave a number of these together.  I'm now thinking closely about whether that would be successful or not.  It strikes me it could leave me jack of all trades and master of none.  So I am thinking seriously because I know what I am like and how I pick up on things and then drop them at the moment (I've not always been like that - but I have been in the past 4 or 5 years).

The issue is that you can put all your effort into one thing and I believe that one would need a lot to capture the available market - which isn't huge but it is significant.  The work would be akin to full time to build and maintain - however - if it does go wrong then there's nothing to fall back on.

Mrs. F. is off tomorrow and who knows we might do something together, perhaps go to see Skyfall?  Hopefully I will get sufficient time to discuss some of these things with her.  One of the schemes requires a little investment - which isn't a problem but given the investment in the past 2 almost 3 years, it may be stretching things a bit far if I don't get agreement.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Not much Bladder Cancer in the blog

The title and the blog are diverging and it there's isn't much in here other than the wreckage that the cancer left in its wake :-)  By that I mean the changes physically and more importantly mentally.  Dealing with the ongoing head issues is proving the biggest deal now where physically coping with the treatment and recovery were the pressing worries earlier on.

I've been considering the practicalities of turning a hobby into a job and by that I mean my genealogy stuff.  I've been doing that for 35 or more years and have written articles about that and undertaken a lot of in depth research.  If it were possible to monetise that in some way then that would be nice.  I've pulled together quite a bit of data on that and then I considered that there are other areas that might also contribute and so I'm thinking through the possibility of combining a number of these together - do many things so that I'm not reliant on the outcome of one and have other things to do during lean times.  It is a way forward and gets over some of the indecision I've been having about committing to one thing.  The idea being that I could build a series of businesses and as long as I'm disciplined enough to work on one when the other is quiet and so on, it could be a potential way out.  Additionally there is a voluntary position going in the local Museum which may help promote my work and I can also get some casual paid work locally although I've not gone into that in any great depth at the moment as I now need to go and work on these ideas and see if they really hold water and make sense.

I can't tell at this moment, the ideas are arriving far too quickly.

I'm wondering whether this blog may soon have run its course in the interim as there are just 2 times a year when something actually happens to me at the moment and they are my check ups?

Committee Meeting

Don't you love it when someone arrives late and makes you go back over all the stuff you've been talking about for 45 minutes.  Anyway, the meeting is over and there's some progress so its not all bad.  My Nephew will join our Lodge next year, all being equal.  That will be nice and will follow "family tradition" kind of :-) as his Granddad, my Father in Law, and his my father in laws father in law was in the Lodge.  Let's hope he enjoys his time.

We are going through some growing pains as younger members have more demanding jobs these days and tend to drop by the wayside as they have families and through their work commitments.  Now I could bleat and say that I always managed it even through my hectic travelling and working away years.  However, I have to accept that these days things are different and no doubt our 290 + year organisation will adapt as required to meet these challenges.  We just needed to make certain that we don't take our own eye off the ball.  Lodges are living things and need new blood regularly and that's the problem where the younger guys peel off to do their own thing and it still leaves us old stalwarts to run the place.  What happens then is that people consider that we are hanging on in our jobs and not moving out of the way.  Oh well, let's hope it doesn't come to that.

I managed to make a bit more progress myself this afternoon with possible ways forward should nothing come of these ghost jobs I've heard nothing about so far.  I can see an interesting path forward which might just about do the business and keep me in beer and food. I need now to work on that as rather than relying on a single stream of income I am looking at perhaps doing a number of small jobs all on a flexible basis.  It may just work.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Gradual Improvement

Today feels a bit better but I have to be cautiously optimistic in these things.  I'm reasonably happy this morning but could do better :-)  Life doesn't seem quite so bad at the moment and so that's a good start and there aren't many things to gripe about other than something I ordered hasn't turned up - I've kicked off a progress email and so hopefully that will sort things out.  If I haven't heard by tomorrow then I'll just go into cancel mode and get it elsewhere.  It's a good thing that I ordered way in advance of requirement.

I continue to formulate and pull together ideas for my potential future venture.  If I hear nothing from things that are out there at the moment I may just burn my bridges and draw a line under my last 20 years in the IT industry (oh yes and the charity) and move on to something new.  Getting stuck into something will I am sure give me the focus I need to sort out some of the other things in my life.  I'm looking at a number of things I could do and how these could all fit around each other.  Not easy as I'd like all of them to be flexible and move around to suit.  Well, that's the plan anyway.

At least it is a better day than I have had for quite a while and for that I'm grateful.

Monday, November 12, 2012

A Better Day

All around it has been a much better day today although I'm still not buzzing and hyperactive.  That will take some time I feel, unless I win the lottery on Tuesday night of course!

I keep looking back to the bit of advice that states you can't make all the changes you want (or need) in one go, you have to work them as you can and gradually.  There is no big bang and everything realigns itself to the way you want it to be.

Out tonight so getting ready for that, computer and cash bag needed as Treasurer for the Lodge.  It is normally a poorly attended meeting as it the one after the main Lodge meeting on Saturday added to that we have our annual committee meeting tomorrow and it could be a very quiet evening indeed.

Monday starts OK

The vacuum cleaner engineer arrived and undertook some major work replacing the motor and then some other components.  I purchased a new filter and so the total came to less than £10 for what looks and works like a new machine.  Thanks goodness for its 5 year guarantee. 

A chat with my business partner today also cheered me up a bit but of course he and I both suffer from people not getting back to us.  I am due 3 phone calls and he is due 2 and we've heard absolutely nothing.  Typical and the issue is that these calls actually influence what actions you are going to take next.

I'm in a reasonable sense of humour today certainly not as bad as I have been for a while but then I've done a number of chores and the vacuum cleaner is fixed, the Christmas food is now ordered and confirmed so we will at least be able to eat Christmas Day :-)

I am beginning to bring together my plans for a business way forward but not personal moving on at the moment - it's too difficult to think about and perhaps another week or two will bring the thoughts together.

Bad night better day

Have to say that I was pretty low last night when I got home, I really hate the silent treatment, apparently it was late and I'd have got a taxi back as it is no big deal.  Oh well.  Today was a little bit better but still it wasn't the greatest of days as the vacuum cleaner decided it wasn't going to work, some stuff on the Internet that I needed to do wouldn't work either and so I need to stay in for the engineer tomorrow and retry the order tomorrow too.

I spent some time planning and decided that I ought to at least look over my old notes and start to review the possibilities of working from home on a number of small projects that I have been considering.  Nothing major but some ideas that would keep the wolf from the door perhaps.

First though I need to make certain that things get sorted tomorrow and then move a small step at a time forward.  The day got better which was great but I must avoid these triggers that drop me into being down and depressed.  The trouble is, it isn't anything major it can be something very trivial and that catches me off guard and suddenly I'm really down and of course I can equally be up in no time too.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Nice Day

Shame I had to come home really.  Sounds bad?  Well that's how I feel at the moment.  I enjoyed some really good company and a lot of people seem to enjoy my company which is great.  Shame it had to end and that I'm now home and suddenly it's like a crushing weight.

Perhaps I should have stayed out and got a taxi back.  I think that next time I will do this.

Lodge later today

I have something to focus on to this afternoon.  It was a pretty appalling evening and L went back to Uni and A was late back from London and I may as well have not been there.

Oh well a meeting later this afternoon will cheer me up and I've got all my preparation done for that.  As Treasurer I have to collect and disburse the money so it can be quite entertaining for a while hoping I get enough money in to be able to pay out later :-)

I managed to do the bulk of my Christmas shopping online yesterday and now I just need to keep an eye open for the impulse purchases I normally make leading up to the day.

Friday, November 09, 2012

What an awful night

I'm absolutely knackered - I've hardly slept at all and my mind hasn't particularly been working on too much or been overactive.  I suppose if anything may have caused it, it was the realisation that not a lot is going to happen on the job front so I need to now revert to plan B perhaps in a few weeks time when I get back from Scotland.  That's if I get there with the flight now having changed twice!  

I think that week will be a bit of an interesting one for me as I'll be centre of attention for some of it and that will be nice.  I'll have some time to unwind a bit too.  It will be near enough Christmas to allow me to set a series of targets leading up to that and then go for it in 2013.  Of course not everything may be sorted out by then so there is that to consider as well.

Anyway, I'm up and about this morning, sorting out the back ups and sorting out my head too :-)

Missed a Birthday

26th October 2006 - first entry in this blog. 

Happy sixth birthday!  A lot has happened in 6 years.... :-)

Once again yuk!

Yes once again I feel like cr@p again.  Almost tearful tonight but that was probably because I was just a little annoyed with things (software wanting to reboot my PC when it was backing up and just doing it).  I kind of knew it was going to be difficult again tonight as L was coming home, A was going to be late and Mrs. F. kept losing various things around the house, mobile phone, keys, pens, receipts and then proceeded to clatter around just as I was listening to about episode 6 of 8 where the plot line was being explained.  A bit of catch up TV will be needed so I can at least understand what went on at the end.

There's the realisation that none of the three job prospects have gotten back to me and in some ways I'm relieved and in others disappointed but that's where I am with it and so I need to push on past that now and decide what to do next.

I'm having great difficulty expressing exactly what is wrong and what I need to happen and like many of these decisions I feel that I don't want to make them or say anything that would lead to a major falling out or lead to something worse and yet somehow I fear that is what might happen.  

Tomorrow I will see what I can do to move myself on a bit because now I can set a date in the calendar that will mean I have to make a decision and I will have to move things on as I cannot continue to procrastinate for much longer.

My backup system is in and despite other conflicting software trying to sabotage my initial back ups it appears to work just fine.  The only problem I foresee is that it is a little bit noisy sat as it is on top of my sub woofer by the TV and so I may have to work out someway of damping the sound of the fan.  Other than that it does seem to do the job very nicely indeed.   

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Backup System Installed

Despite the doom and gloom mongers in the internet reviewing world, my Drobo-FS arrived this morning and within 5 minutes it was up and running.  Even a dolt like me can make it work and so I guess these reviewers must of had bad luck, were working for the opposition or were really thick. Mind you mine must have been delivered by an ex-SAS man as I didn't hear the doorbell and there was a card stuck through the door - I hate those but luckily it was left with my next door neighbour...

So now I have all the PCs backing up to the new RAID system and I am moving all my other date there too so that I will now have 3 or 4 instances of all data and some key files are double backed into the cloud too so that I can access those anywhere. With 2 x 3TB drives in play to start with I hope that I will have solved the loss of data issues at last.

I had a good afternoon and evening yesterday and it was great to see one of my friends who became the Master of his London Livery Company.  My goodness he has the most packed schedule this coming year.  It is the Lord Mayor's Show on Saturday and he will be there and has already had a series of functions to attend to.  What a wonderful thing that must be.  It is fascinating seeing the Livery Companies and their role in London (City) life.

The meeting was tinged with a little sadness too as we said goodbye to a very popular member who died in September.  I bumped into his son a few weeks ago and passed the time remembering the dads.  I like that my school friends and I who meet every month have a little toast to the dads when we meet, all 4 of us no longer have our dads with us.

I'm calling my mum everyday still but perhaps I will slowly get that to 2 or 3 times a week.  She is getting out and about a fair bit now and has applied for her bus pass which will be great as it will give her some mobility and freedom to go into town.

This morning has been a bit of a mixed bag.  Once the kit arrived I was happy enough but before that I was a bit flat again.  I'd had another series of quite vivid dreams and strangely enough the ones I remembered were exhausting mentally with so much going on and with surprisingly complex plots and sub plots.  I wish I could record them, some would make excellent books :-)  This one made some sense and then lost itself in some amazingly complex relationships.  I felt quite worn out when I finally snapped out of the dream.  

I have to say though I was quite bad for a short while and very depressed and then quite quickly I was past all of that and back on with the day.  Strange stuff indeed.  

I'm getting used to this bumping along the bottom and to the strange thoughts that pervade my waking day sometimes.  The dream had once more involved cancer and death and today I was drawn back into thinking that my demeanour might be something more.  That's how strange things are, I recollect my dad saying he hadn't been right for some time but couldn't put his finger on it and in a way that's how I am at the moment.  I haven't been right for some time but I'm pretty certain that it is all "in your head" not in my body.  At least I'm not getting any worse and I'm not in the really dark places when I do get depressed.  It's manageable shall we say.  

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

No news is good news

I guess that is the case especially when I had my scans etc.  Of course when you want to hear something or get a phone call (a watched phone never rings) nothing seems to happen.  So it's been weeks now since the opportunity at Wimbledon and absolutely nothing has happened.  Then there's the big job up in London and yes, you've guessed it, not a squeak either.  I think there was one other but I'm quite good at just dropping stuff out of my head if I think it doesn't have legs.

This does nothing to add to my current low feelings (shall we call them).  It isn't a surprise in reality that you don't get responses these days, there are too many applicants for the posts available and people no longer follow the social norms or writing to you etc.  I've had people ask me for a job and I've always had the decency to get back to them as normally I can't employ anyone due to the nature of my business but at least I have read their CV and can make suggestions on where they can look or what they might want to do to their CV to improve it etc.  It is after all common courtesy and decency to do so, I treat people how I would like to be treated generally although as you probably know if you are about to try and sell me something I don't want, have phoned me and are wasting my time or are some other waste of Oxygen, you will be told in a more colourful way what I think of you :-)

So back to not hearing anything.  It will be what it will be, I know that.  I find it somewhat amusing that like many of these things I still, after all these years, get excited by the prospect of possibly getting a gig and then finding out that there isn't even a follow up at all :-)  It shouldn't affect me anymore, I've been there, got the Tee Shirt, the DVD, Blue Ray, book and everything!  However it has to affect you because it re enforces the conclusions I've already arrived at and that is that I probably would only be doing those jobs for the wrong reasons.  The money mainly followed by the status of the jobs too (they build you up as you call the shots and run the projects etc).  Yet as I saw last week, I hate the commute now and whilst I find people fascinating, I certainly found the commute to be stressful and full of unhealthy and unfriendly people.  There's nothing remotely civilised about being transported to and from work in cattle trucks and perhaps I just need now to nail that into my decision making process.  I do sometimes look at the salaries and the conditions and expect one to offset the other but I am erring more towards living than having all the trappings.

The more I don't hear back, the more I'm leaning towards doing my own thing.  The trouble with that is that it is a home based business and I think that has some dangers considering I've been working at home for a number of years now.

Nice Walk

I'm lucky as I live very close to the countryside and the sun was shining nicely and we, Mrs. F., A and I went for a long walk through the woods checking for damage to the Ash trees from this new horrible disease that may wipe them out.  We certainly had a nice walk and then came through the football field through the oldest part of the village and to the local pub where we had a drink and some food.  So that was nice.

I was OK with that and enjoyed the walk and the fresh air but you know what?  I still have no idea on what I want to do.  I couldn't tell you other than the extremes of my thinking.  The extremes are indeed extreme, this involves me taking off and leaving everything behind and just going somewhere and living a simple existence, reading, writing and perhaps doing some sort of research work, painting and sketching, being some sort of artisan, sculpture or something constructive.  Don't ask me why that would be, I have no idea but that's what is screaming out from me at the moment.  I want to live in a small cottage and be involved in a local community and make a small difference but more than anything else I want to be away from this life I live now. 

So that's the extreme of my thinking but it is strangely a place in my dreams and my imagination that I'm comfortable with.  I fancy this being in the countryside or by the sea and I envisage that I would have some sort of comfy room surrounded by my books and there would be a desk and roaring fire.  Happy enough with my own company most of the time, there would be a local country pub and happy locals to spend the odd social evening with.

It appears to me that this is some sort of message and reaction to current situation, perhaps fight or flee reaction.  I note that there is no room for anyone else in these visions and plans at all.  It is all about me running away and rebuilding some sort of idyllic life for myself and just spend the time really enjoying what I like.  I find myself trying to work during the day at the moment and maybe I should be spending some more time out and about, perhaps reading or learning to play the piano better than I can now and all the other things I ought to be doing.

I have Lodge meetings later (today now) and that will take away some time for thinking and considering what to do for today.  From next week onwards, crazy November takes over as I have meetings almost one after the other for 2 weeks.  I just hope I can keep track of it all.