Saturday, July 25, 2015

We're all different!

No one is the same,  we all behave in different ways,  and react differently to certain situations. Never is it more obvious than when something happens to YOU,  and friends and acquaintances react.
My situation for example (well it's all I'm talking about but this could apply to many things life) with the recent change of circumstances for me,  and the kind offer of friends to put me up in their place in Spain for a breather.

Breaking up is never easy, sometimes painful,  other times confusing. Either way it's nice to get distance and reflect when possible. Add to that that having rooms in your house ripped apart and rebuilt over 10 days is never a great place to be at best of times... I speak from experience here.
Combine the two and it's a mess,  so getting away is good.
Now I have done wild getaways before,  and can say that while fun,  it's not for me.  I like peace,  I like invited and wanted conversation,  and I like being in control of things. So sitting up a mountain overlooking the coast of Spain  and over to Africa with relaxed like minded people is a great solution. Remote,  quiet,  uninterrupted unless I want it.

I'm sure we all have our own  ideas of what a break is,  what constitutes peace and quiet, and for me,  apparently much to the annoyance and dismay of others,  includes using social media. Now being realistic,  social media is where I'm at. It's something I like to use, a lot!  As with all my trips over the years,  I have been all over social media when I'm away,  so this is no different. And just to add, my hosts are also online quite a lot,  so if anything I'm fitting in better.

Now why you ask! Why go all the way to Spain and be online. Well that's easy. It's noise,  it's activity,  and just enough to keep my brain  ticking over and now nose diving into self pity and sorrow about the break up. I didn't come away to cry or be depressed,  I came away to find myself a little,  and get my feet again without my partner in crime.

I know comments are made with the best interests at heart,  and quite frankly those making them for their own reasons can happily stop following me.  I can help with a how to if you don't know how to unfriend,  or block me.

But as I said to someone yesterday,  surely the concern for me should happen if I start acting abnormally,  doing weird shit,  (weirder than usual) or just plummet off the rails.

So, sorry if MY use of social media while I am making adjustment to MY life bothers YOU so much that YOU feel the need to insult or berate me for it.  But for me right now,  it's what works,  and it's what I intend on continuing to do for as long as I please.

For those who have messaged with genuine concern or sadness,  thank you.

Right,  better get back to Facebook,  Twitter and Instagram before it forgets me. Feet up,  lay back,  sun time.


PS sincere big thanks to my hosts for this break. (it's not a fuckin holiday!)

Sunday, July 19, 2015

All a bit strange..

Just thought I would try and put into words how I am feeling right now, as I don't seem to be able to understand it myself at the moment.
Waking this morning, I slept OK, so got straight to business, and getting the dogs walked.
Build up to it was fine, then walking out the door, the first wave of thoughts and emotions. It's Sunday, I don't do the morning walks alone on a Sunday, but I guess I better get used to it, this is Day 1 of different.

Getting into my stride, I start doing my usual chatting to myself in my head, playing things out, replaying any events of the past day or two. Its what over thinkers do, its nothing new to me. But obviously this time there is a rather prominent topic, and so it begins. Acceptance of the situation, as I have said before, it's a shock but no real surprise to me. Then the memories, the realisation of the changes, and what will I say to other people. Not, will I tell the truth, but how will the conversation go, EXACTLY. Word for word. Another over thinkers trait.

All around the walk, the dogs do things, but there is no one to talk to, thoughts come into my mind, but again, I'm alone. Sure there are many caring people only a message away, but its not the same. It's not spontaneous.

By the end of the hour and a half of dog walks (takes twice as long as I'm...... yup, alone!) I get back to the house, and I would be lying if I didn't say there was a feeling of dread as I walked up the drive, no Mini. In the house, deadly silence. Coming into the house a huge wave of emotion smashes into me, thoughts as fast and frantic as the pages of a book as you flick through it. Memories, worries, and loneliness.

I feed the dogs, and unlike usually, I skip breakfast myself. A twisting gurgle feeling in my stomach, now is not the time for food.
Instead I come to my little space (scattered with memories of trips, and adventures shared), head down, ignoring the keepsakes, I log on to the PC. Having posted a few status updates on Facebook before heading out with the dogs, the replies and comments are plentiful, for which I am grateful. Everything from deep expressions of sorrow, to totally missing the point.  But it's only right to reply to them, and not seem like a recluse.

So I get started. Many comments tripping me up with emotions, unintentional triggers. Reflections of the past, surprise, and everything in between. A little light humour, a lot of gratitude, and a few ideas all thrown into the melting pot of thoughts. Meanwhile my IM is also pinging away, numerous conversations, again from all angles.
Now as the fury of messages and conversation grows, its getting too much. Too much to think about, decide, work out, plan..... My brain is melting.

Limiting myself to just a couple of conversations, I try and focus on what I need to do next, and work out what is happening immediately in front of me. Then logging off and hitting the streets. Walking once again, the mind goes wild all over again. Trying to keep my focus, shut out the negativity, and remember what is important. Friendship, staying in touch with my bestie, and knowing that while I have this almost overkill of activity and concern, she probably has the complete opposite right now.

As I finally get back home again, after a short unexpected trip to the shops, the doom greets me.

On the final few roads, it all starts to fall into place. That while we have been together for a long time, and I have almost stolen her youth away from her. I realise that I have realised for a long time that this day would come. Have even joked about it over the years, both with Chantal and others. But the realities don't dawn on you until it happens.
Our relationship has been unorthodox for a long time now. One if explained to others, they would just not get. But in all that, I have found my best friend, my companion, and someone who I can trust and rely on.
Or I had... And that's the bit really chewing at my heart right now. Put simply, I'm lonely... VERY VERY lonely, and it scares me so very much. Teeth clenched as I type this, throat tight, it is a horrible realisation, and one I simply don't want to get used to. I am surrounded by mates and a few good friends, but no one quite matches. I don't like this feeling one bit.
I know we will stay friends, I know I can rely on her for anything I need, someone to talk to etc. But that's the whole foundation of the situation. Dependency, on each other, has backed her into a corner which I simply can't justify trying to keep her in any longer.

So while I have nothing to fear, as I know help is so close by, I have EVERYTHING to fear, knowing that the only way we can stay friends and as close as we have grown, is if I give all of that up.

I'm sorry for putting my thoughts and personal life out there, and sharing things that possibly should remain between us, but I have to make sense of it all. I have to get the thoughts out of my head. Before they consume me.

I made a comment to someone earlier, that my head is like an all-in-one soup maker. And after shredding all my thoughts, destroying my mind, it sets about simmering them, bubbling away, cooking up something. Just sitting here waiting for it to churn out whatever the final outcome is.

I know I haven't said it much over years, but just want to throw this out there. Over 12 years, I have gone from spending time with a girl I hang out with, to learning to love someone so much, and fear any hurt or ill intent towards them. Secretly worrying all the time, and I guess you could say forming a synergy. Existing as one, even when far apart. There is a lot of emotional blurb coming to the surface right now, but I just need to be honest and say quite simply, I love you and I miss you SO much Chantal. Its been just over 12 hours, and already my mind is struggling with how things go on from here.

Of course we will be fine, it's not the end of the world. Its just quite simply, the end.

On the flip side to all this. I praise the courage it has taken to be honest about the whole situation, and reach this point. To be as mature and open about it as you have been, and for every gesture you have made since leaving last night. Of course I can say this all to you in private, but I want others to know how proud I am of the woman you have grown into. Strong, fierce, and now truly independent.

I could go on all day, this was only meant to be short, but that will do for now.
Sorry for rambling on so much, but it works for me.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

So many thoughts trapped in my head.

You know me, when I can't get a thought out of my head, when it just keeps going round and round, it's to the blog I turn. Now is one of those times.

So I could beat around the bush, but lets get right to the crux of it... I just got dumped. After 12 years!
Now it's only fair that I am clear about this, and honest from the start. We have been together a long time, and there are NO bad feelings between us. But there comes a time when sometimes it's just best to go your separate ways. On this occasion, it is one of them.

The past week hasn't been a good one really. Obvious something was up, dreading asking because of the suspicion it would be just this conversation. So this evening I decided to pluck up the courage, et voila, there is was.

If I'm honest, I have probably expected this for years now. I haven't always been fantastic to be around, routine was becoming a bit obvious it was a chore, and lets face facts, what pretty girl in her late 20's wants to be stuck with a chubby broken guy in his 40's lol.

I'm just messing. We have had a fantastic time over the past 12 years, and she has truly been my rock through some dreadful times in my life. Caring for mum, putting up with my depression, and being there when I needed someone to rely on. So thank you for all the good times, and sharing the bad times.

Hopefully this mature approach (other than me putting it all over the internet within 20 mins of her leaving)  will protect the amazing friendship and bond we have built over the years. I know I am happy to stay as besties as long as its permitted, and hope the feeling is mutual.

So for all you mutual friends out there, no being mean, ya hear! There is no bad blood, nor will there be. So no sides need to be taken. If anyone does, I will take hers, and kick YOU to the kerb :)

However, and there is always a however in these blogs.... I'm left kinda wide open right now. Having not shed a tear in about 12-13 years, not being one for being overly emotional, dealing with things like this always catches me out somewhat. Heart racing, stomach churning, dry mouth, and a little confused, but no actual exit or show of emotion about the matter. Instead I will blog lots, toss and turn, and be mentally restless for however long it takes to "get over" the situation.

I in advance thank anyone who contacts me, offers to talk, lends an ear, or just sends their expression of sorrow about the matter. I appreciate it very much, and will reply asap, in usual fashion.

Right, I'm going to sit and sulk for a while now, I may be some time! Don't worry about me though, I'm not a fan of doing stupid things, other than publishing my life. So if I am quiet, I am probably just doing something on my own for a bit to catch some air.

So there you go, WOWZA I'm single! But don't have a bad feeling in me, so please don't either.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015


The 7th July 2005 was just another normal day in the office for me. Working for Fedex on Nine Elms Lane in SW8, in the dispatch office.
Nothing special about the day, other than I was having a new windscreen fitted to my Mk IV Golf.

Starting work that day was straight forward, with the AutoGlass guy showing up, and me going downstairs to get him started on the car. Returning to my office, and getting back to work.
Suddenly one of the other guys in the office takes a disturbing phone call, a hysterical courier on the phone, rambling, confused, "its just blown up, in front of me, its just gone!" The line goes dead.

Up until this point, we had no real idea what was going on. A few vague reports on the radio about an explosion somewhere in London, but no firm details. Remembering, its 2005, and while the internet exists, and is becoming popular, things like Twitter and Facebook are in their infancy, and social media is yet to blossom. So except for the radio, there is no real news.

With the earlier explosions having been on tube trains, underground, away from the sight of the masses, news is slow to emerge. But thats about to change, in fact it just has. With the phonecall from Daniel being the first clue to what has just happened, minutes later our worst fears are confirmed, and the radio reports a scene of devastation on Tavistock Square where eye witnesses report a bus has been almost vaporised by an explosion.

The pieces are falling into place fast now, and it is clear that something truly horrific is unfolding in London right before our very eyes. Phones in the office burst into life, both personal mobiles, as well as business lines. Couriers trying to find out what's happening, friends and family checking in with one another.... Then silence. The mobile networks, overloaded by calls have ground to a halt, and will eventually be blocked for all but essential calls for the emergency services.

The radio with LBC on, playing in the background almost pauses for a moment, as the presenter composes themselves to deliver the news to its listeners in London. Announcing that a series of bombs have exploded on trains and at least one bus. With new still shaky about exactly where and how many bombs there have been, everyone prepares for the worst news, and maybe a second wave of attacks.

With our office less than a mile from the Mi6 building in Vauxhall Cross, and remembering back to 9/11, how planes were used to attack high profile targets. And also sitting on one of the main flight paths to Heathrow, it would be a lie to say the thought of a plane being used in a second attack didn't cross anyones mind. But for now there are more important things to deal with.

Let friends and loved ones know you are ok, emails flying, forum posts being made, and making contact with anyone you know who could be within a few miles of the situation. Work colleagues, contacting everyone on road to make sure no one else has been affected by the events. Communication is slow, painfully slow, and it takes what feels like an eternity to do a full role call of everyone. Eventually however it is done, and without much consideration to official instructions, workers are told just get out of central London and into safety, or back to base.

Calls are coming in from customers, relatives of workers, and anyone with any invested interest in the people within the company. Customers saying stay safe, don't come, and that they are going home. Concerned family members, unaware the phone networks are down, and fearing the worst as they cannot contact their relative. Calming each caller, confirming we have made contact and that they are alive and well and heading for safety.

The timeline at this point seems stretched and distorted. Memories and recollections of how things happened make no sense. How could so much have happened in such a short time.
Walking downstairs to take a quick breather, I go to see how the AutoGlass guy is getting on, asking if he has heard the news. He looks blankly at me, listening instead to a music radio station which is yet to have a news bulletin. Staring at me he switches stations and looks shocked as he starts to hear the reports.

Looking across the way into another unit on the estate we are on. The London Underground response officers are gearing up. For years now we have looked over as they calmly load up to go out to a job, maybe a minor accident etc. But today is different. Speed is of the essence, everything they have trained for has just happened, all at once, and then some.  Seeing the last of the equipment going onto the many vehicles, and seeing them pull out, reality dawns on you. They are about to enter a scene of uncertainty and without doubt, complete devastation. Bodies, wreckage, hysteria, just some of the things that await these poor guys. Your thoughts go with them as they turn onto the main road and head into town.

As the radio starts to report in detail the sheer enormity of the situation, a chilling sound fills the air. I have gone cold sitting here typing this, just recalling the sight and sound which followed. The air, filled with sirens clearly travelling at speed. We all look out of the windows out on to Nine Elms Lane, and see a huge string of ambulances, some London, but mainly Surrey, pouring down the road, rushing to the scenes of the explosions. To see such a mass of home counties emergency services flooding into London, the penny drops... This is HUGE !

For the next few hours we listen intently to the radio, as the details become clearer, how many bombs, how many missing, helplines launched, appeals for all kinds of help.

Amazingly London has responded on two levels. The first being the petrified and helpless, getting away is the main thing, and every effort is made to help one another get to safety and comfort. And then the second level, unity. An amazing sight as people just forget who they are for a moment and become one amazing unit. Helping, carrying, guiding, volunteering. London has done something amazing, and probably partially driven by the history of terrorism in the capital. Refusing to be scared away, refusing to cower, people stand tall. TV cameras capture scenes as people flood into the streets, companies closing with immediate effect and sending everyone home. The transport network crippled, there is no choice but to walk. But not the usual blinkered London streets walk. But a slow paced, friendly, comforting and engaging way.

Drivers offer lifts to those who clearly will struggle to walk long distance, in the face of horror and adversity, the days events have driven people closer together and out into the streets. Not hiding behind closed doors in fear.

As the day for many draws to an end, for a very special group of people, a long day continues. Police, fire fighters, rescue crews, ambulance crews, and all sorts of other public service employees continue their tireless effort to get to the remaining victims. To sweep every carriage to ensure everyone possible is accounted for.

In the years since these events, London has returned to its usual self, and people have put events to the backs of their minds. Much more has happened since that day.

But today marks ten years since it all happened.

So today, whatever your experiences were of the day, however it affected you, let us once again unite, be as one together, and stand strong. Let us remember to those innocent people who lost their lives in such a hateful and tragic event. Lets pay tribute to the amazing efforts of all the emergency, and other services who took control that day, seamlessly springing into action and taking care of everything so well. Selfless, dedicated and committed to the job they signed up to do.

But please, let us not use this day to raise the ugly head of racism, anti religious feelings, or to play the blame game. After all, it is the infighting that the evil minded people who carry out these attacks prey on. So lets not give in. While I appreciate the media feel the need to mark the date, as do we. Reshowing the devastation, the panic and upset it caused on that day is in no way a tribute to anyone. Its cheap television, and something I don't take kindly too. I would much rather the day be filled with stories of how new bonds were made, stories of survival and defiance.

So, remember the victims, think of their families. Take a moment to reflect how the day changed your life, and pay thanks to the brave people who guided so many through the day. But please please please, don't give any negativity or hatred the time of day.

R.I.P to all those who lost their lives in the events of 7/7. Condolences to the friends and families of all those who lost a loved one on this day. My thoughts are with you today.