The Novelty of Having a Plan 

In 52 years of shuffling around on this rock, I’ve never had a “career plan”. I never needed to. I just lucked upon jobs, I’ve never been “driven” in that respect. I’ve just gone and floated on the current, gone where the flow takes me.

It’s amazing though what loss can do to you.  It changes you, in ways you maybe can’t imagine.

It’s almost a year now. He took himself away just over 3 weeks before last year’s ISBF. And the instant decision to go ahead with that event was possibly the single biggest “thing” that helped me get through that surreal time. When everything else was on “autopilot”. That said, I suppose – until the actual event itself, the lead up was on autopilot too. There was a template to work from.

But there’s no template for losing a child. However it happens.

I used to fret and worry about “things”, “stuff”, possessions, I’d go mad when I broke things. “Things” were precious. Irreplaceable sometimes. That picture disc you’d had for 35 years, that photo frame, that special beer you had been saving. Those things mattered.

How fucking stupid.

People matter. Things can be replaced, rebuilt, restored. People can’t. That’s the truth.

I miss him.

That deLorean was fiction. Time travel is sci-fi, which is fiction. There’s no going back. Only forwards. Or stasis – which is dangerously unhealthy.

So you keep placing that one foot in front of the other. Day in. Day out.

I can’t plan blogs anymore. I need a stimulus. A prompt or a prod. They are often the simplest of things.

I caught up with an old colleague last night on the phone. We’d not spoken for a couple of years so he didn’t know about Fionn. He was all broken up. He’s a good person, he’d always cared.

We talked for an hour. Yes, talked. Not emailed. Not FB messenger or Twitter. Not even What’s App.

We talked. And it felt like putting on that old pair of DMs. Comfy. Warm. Real.

I’m utterly sick of only catching up with old friends at leaving dos and funerals. I’ve buried one too many people before their time.

Been to too many funerals of colleagues and felt the subsequent guilt of drift. Letting life float you on its current. I always swore that I’d never let that happen. It stops now. People are too precious. Friendships are too precious. As is time.

As Tobi Legend (aka Tobi Lark) sang in one of the legendary Northern Soul ‘3 before 8’ “Time Will Pass You By“.

Don’t let it.

I’ve had a dream for a few years now. To do something I love whilst I’m young enough to enjoy it. To found my own beer business. A shop. Or a bar. Then reality bites. That’s not going to happen.

But what I can effect is this.

I can retire at 55. Or, to put it another way, in just over 2 1/2 years. And oh my am I going!

Like I said, to do something I love whilst I’m young enough to enjoy it. To give it my heart and soul. Whilst I’ve got some life in me.

Working behind a bar. Brewery admin. Sales. Deliveries. Running somewhere. I don’t care. If I was to spend 5 years or more working in a decent beer place, rather than behind a desk, that would be bliss.

It won’t make my life complete. Nothing ever will. And 2 1/2 years may seem like a long time. But each day that passes turns my lips upward. Just a little.

It’s the only career plan I’ve ever had. And I’m liking it.

Counting down…