I cannot believe it is almost August. It seems like only a short while ago we were shovelling snow off the front path and complaining of the bitter cold. Why is it that the older you get, the faster time seems to drain away? When we were kids, childhood seemed to be an almost immeasurable span. The cares and responsibilities of adulthood were a lifetime away. We had no worries other than what was for dinner and buying more records. Then all too quickly we were thrust out into the adult world and no-one had taught us how to deal with it.
The trouble with the way school used to operate when we were there is that they put all this great knowledge in our heads but failed to show us how to apply it to life. "I don't need to know this, " we thought. "I'm never going to need a cosine or a logarithm when I go shopping or drive a car." These days they teach kids real-world situations and practical applications. When I left school I had nary a clue what I was going to do. I still don't, not really. As Jasper Carrott once said, there's not much you can do with 'O' levels in maths and art, apart from paint computers.
Some, it has to be said, had gotten the instruction book for life before leaving school, and immediately went off and did great things, got great jobs, lived in nice houses and had perfect nuclear families with 2.5 kids and a BMW on the driveway. Others, like me, hadn't seen the instruction book, didn't know where it was kept or just plain lost the thing.
Life has changed considerably since childhood. Now we are all in our forties we have a lifetime of experiences and can regale others with our tragedies and triumphs, our parenting stories, job calamities and tales of loves won and lost. Coming back to the UK after 18 years in the States, some of which were disastrous, means I get to tell wild exotic stories on a regular basis. Old school friends that I have had the great pleasure of reconnecting with and having a beer with can attest to the fact that I like to tell stories. I have always been a gregarious and some would say eloquent sort; though some might say I talk too much. Whatever. But I do enjoy having a receptive audience. This is why I love writing this blog. To be able to just say whatever random thing is in my head, have random people read it, and get some positive feedback on occasion is just like sitting around a table with friends, beer in hand, and holding forth.
Thank you all for reading my stream-of-consciousness nonsense, and I hope you will continue to read in the days, weeks, months and perhaps years to come. As this blog comes up on its one-year anniversary, i thank you all for your support and occasional comments from the bottom of my heart.