The post that’s just posting lyrics

I don’t normally do this, but here they are:

Every road that’s wrong,
Seems like the road I’m on
Every sign just seems unclear.

Won’t you come switch me on,
I don’t know where I’ve gone,
And I, I wish I was here.

They’re from a little song, I can’t get enough of. It’s beautiful and well worth 3 minutes of your life. Click here to hear it.

Enjoy.

N x

The post that needs a job it likes

It’s the scourge of my existence, I swear. Motivation. How do you get it? How do you keep it?

These aren’t rhetorical questions, by the way, I’m actually asking you.

I had another awful night’s sleep last night, which led me to not getting up until 11:30 and consequently not starting work until 12:30.

But even then I just sat there staring at my laptop, with a very familiar feeling of “I just cannot be bothered” and it’s one I’ve had before.

I remember a summer job I had as a student working in a factory that tested mobile phones for damage and after several weeks, just thinking if I had to test one more phone, I’d put a bullet in my head.

Or when I worked in a call centre or as a sales order processor, it was exactly the same. Sometimes it took weeks, sometimes months. But it always happens.

Man, if I have to take one more phone call, I’ll scream. It led to regular toilet breaks, always volunteering to make the tea and coffee for colleagues and any other excuse just to have a break from the monotony.

And now it’s kicking in big time. If you’re not into your work, the enthusiasm to do it, and do it well, will disappear. It might take a long time sometimes, but it will inevitably happen.

On the one hand it’s tempting to think, well these days, you should just be happy to have a job at all. But on the other, is it so bad to want more?

Am I supposed to feel guilty for not being satisfied with having a job, and having the audacity to want one I like?

I don’t think I’m ever going to be happy and be able to build a life I’m actually proud of and enjoy until I have a job that I like and that I’m good at and that pays well enough for me to be comfortable. Not stinking rich, just comfortable. I’m fine with having to be careful, be I don’t want to have to worry about finances every single month.

Okay, now it does sound like I’m being greedy. Or is that just called having ambition? Why do I have this inherent feeling that I don’t deserve any of these things? Almost like a sense of worthlessness.

I just think everything else would fall into place after getting the job/career/income situation sorted out.

I don’t think other aspects of my life are really going to matter until I’ve found that piece of the jigsaw because when you’ve found out what you’re good at, the search can stop.

The foundations are in place. You don’t have to keep wondering what’s next. And from that stability you can think about having a relationship. I don’t think there’s any point in me even looking for one until I’ve sorted this out. And what if I never do? Well… I don’t know.

Girls don’t want someone, especially someone who’s a few weeks away from turning 30, who still doesn’t know what they want to do with their life.

They want someone with drive and a career and ambition, someone stable who knows where they’re going. Someone who can offer them stability and take care of them and be a rock. Has their own place or at least doesn’t still have to share a small house with three other strangers.

I tick precisely none of those boxes.

Hell, I can hardly take care of myself. As I have found out from previous relationships, I find being there for someone else just an added stress in my life.

And that’s because my own life is too fucked up – I don’t have the mental nor physical resources to be one half of a couple and all the expectations that come along with that.

I just sort of float along and see what happens. Year after year. Trying new things only for them ultimately not to work out.

Maybe the right job for me doesn’t exist. Maybe my talents just don’t fit any careers. Christ, this is something a person should be figuring out when they’re 19 not 29.

It would be good if there was something I could do where it was like, okay you have 1 year and every 2 weeks you do a different job. At the end of the year, you pick the one you were most suited to and that’s the one you do. Simple as that.

The whole issue dominates my thoughts a lot but I’m highly restricted by money. I can’t afford to spend the vast sums required on higher/further education and even if I could, what then am I supposed to live on while I study?

Volunteer somewhere to get a feel for whether you like a job first? Good in theory but, you guessed it, I need income.

I know there are a lot of tests out there that supposedly determine your ideal career path but I’ve not really had any joy with them. If any of you know of any that are decent, please do let me know.

By way of an experiment, if you’re currently working, and if you want to, then leave your job title in the comments section. Who knows, your career path might be the one that’s meant for me too and could be the spark that ignites the rest of my days.

Wouldn’t that be crazy?

N x

The post that needs some sleep

I just did not want to get up and out of my bed today. I don’t get that feeling very often but today I wanted to close myself off from the world.

As is often the case with me, I was reminded of a song lyric from the song “I Need Some Sleep” by Eels

I need some sleep,

I can’t go on like this.

I tried counting sheep,

But there’s one I always miss.

Everyone says, I’m getting down to low.

Everyone says, you just gotta let it go.

I had an awful night’s sleep. Couldn’t nod off then woke up in the early hours and was awake for God knows how long.

You know when you just want to stay under the duvet? Cocoon yourself? Shut yourself off from the world?

Yeah, that was how I felt this morning.

I feel really weird as well.

Bit sick in my stomach.

Not much appetite – I’m normally starving by lunch time, but not today.

As I type this I literally just sneezed about a billion times.

And I feel tired. So so tired.

I’m lucky in that I’m able to just stop working and today I didn’t have any pressing deadlines so although I have done some work today, it’s been really just tying up a few loose ends and nothing substantial.

So when it got to 4pm, I just thought “fuck this, I can’t do anything”, and went for a lie down.

Which led me to writing a blog post.

I spent almost all day outside of my house yesterday because I couldn’t bear another day spent in my room. So I walked to the next town (1.5 miles away) just because.

There was no purpose. It was just to be in a different environment. So I walked slowly, desperately trying to eat up the hours. Had a McDonald’s, ate it slowly. Trundled around the town. Found a large park to walk around. Slowly.

And then finally, the sun started to set and I went back home.

I was pleased that I was able to eat up the hours quite quickly. Sometimes I just want to click my finger and make the day end. Press a “skip to the end” button and magically it’s the end of the day.

It’s weird though because I actually went out on Friday night with a mate for a few beers, then spent Saturday watching football and recovering from a hangover.

So I had been out recently. I was out Wednesday evening as well so I don’t get why I had the feeling of being desperate not to stay in.

I was definitely wanting to escape my room and my head though.

I have to go out soon for a meeting, which I could really do without. I’m feeling increasingly sick and my eyes are heavy.

And it’s so cold outside.

What’s annoying is that it’s the sort of meeting where I’m going to be expected to be vocal and contribute.

Ugh, I’ll have to see what I can muster.

Right, I’ve got to go.

Have a better evening that I suspect I’m going to have!

N x

The post that hates Christmas

I do, I’m sorry but… actually I won’t apologise for it. I hate it. I hate Christmas.

Meeting up with people you either don’t know or you don’t like and having to spend upwards of 2 days in their company.

As Blink 182 so eloquently put it in their song “I Won’t Be Home For Christmas“:

It’s Christmas time, again

It’s time to be nice to the people you can’t stand all year

I’m growing tired of all this Christmas cheer

These lines capture it perfectly for me.

But I reckon I could tolerate most of this time of year if it weren’t for the presents. I don’t like giving them or receiving them.

It’s so difficult to fake a smile and pretend to like gifts that you neither want nor need. As if that’s not bad enough, you then have to watch as someone else goes through the same phoney process.

Those three wise men. That’s who I blame. They started all this present giving nonsense.

Why can’t we just meet up, get drunk, eat lots of crap and then say, right cheers for that, same time next year. See you later.

Instead I have to  spend waste money on gifts knowing full well they won’t be liked. So why don’t I ask people what they want? Because everyone always says the same thing: “Errrr, nothing really”.

Great, thanks for that, you’ve been very helpful.

Isn’t the whole thing massively pointless? Why don’t we just give each other about £35 and leave it at that. Or, and this might seem a bit too logical for the purists so bear with me, exchange nothing at all.

I’ve missed some Christmases because I’ve been backpacking and when my trips have coincided with the birth of Christ, I feel a huuuuuuuuuge sense of relief. It’s like, YES! Bullet dodged for another year!

Missing Christmas is more of a cause for celebration than the event itself.

And look, I’m poor by most people’s standards. I don’t have a well-paying job like most 29 year old males and I can’t afford to get anyone nice stuff.

And it’s embarrassing, to be honest. I don’t want to admit that partly through pride and because it’s a really sensitive subject to bring up.

Oh look, he’s still on a shitty income. We’ve spent this much on him but didn’t get the same back because he hasn’t got any money.

So, I spend all year being careful with my money because I have to be in order to do things like pay rent and eat three times a day.

I don’t spend money on myself for nice clothes and books and DVD’s, but then suddenly Christmas rolls around and I’m expected to buy all this shite for everyone else.

It’s total nonsense.

And for what? A fictitious character that was born a couple of thousand years ago. I’m an atheist so I firmly believe there is no God, or Jesus and, to me, these creations are no more real than the tooth fairy or pixies.

So, why the hell do I have to be involved? I wish I could say to my family, do you know what guys, I’ll come up for a visit on the 24th for a couple of days, but buy me nothing and expect nothing from me except my presence (not presents!) and conversation.

Maybe booze. Probably booze. Definitely booze.

I wonder what would happen if I did that? I don’t think anyone in my family is particularly religious (possible my sister in law?), so wouldn’t care for that reason.

But they’d probably be all like, ah stop being such a miserable git. But Christmas in it’s current state is what makes me miserable. Let me tweak it and I’ll be happy.

Let’s look at this logically:

I get to keep my money, which I need for my trip.

You don’t receive a piece of crap from me that you don’t want/need and therefore don’t have to pretend to like.

I don’t receive a piece of crap from you that I don’t want/need and therefore don’t have to pretend to like.

It’s perfect.

So, to sum up this rant. Down with Christmas. Or at least down with gift buying.

Spread the word, people.

N x

The post that’s in on a Friday night

Man, Friday night’s when you have no plans and just stay in. They are the worst, aren’t they?

I’m enduring one as I type.

Last Friday night I was lucky enough to be invited out for drinks and it was brilliant. So many laughs. Actually being in the company of people. And laughing. Getting drunk. All buying rounds.

That was living. I want to do that more. I was gutted when the night ended because it meant I was off back home. Back home alone. Just me and my thoughts. Back inside my head.

I’m not saying I want to do that every night of the week but once a week would be nice. Why do people have to pair off and move away? I want people to go out and get drunk with. Is that too much to ask?

I’m fairly introverted which many people think means one doesn’t like to be around other people. It’s not true. Introverts just find it exhausting to be around people for a long period of time.

So, let’s say I spent three nights in a row in the company of other people, by the fourth night, I’d very much welcome a night in my own company, even if I’d loved every minute of the previous three nights.

I had some work to do this week which meant visiting an office. A typical office. People sitting next to each other, nattering away, laughing and joking. And working.

And I realised that now, after 14 months, I do now miss that environment. Where I worked before was a nightmare. I dreaded every single day but I realise now that the people there were the only good thing about it (the boss aside) and were what made that hell bearable.

I think in some ways those 18 months in that office scarred me. But I need to realise that not all offices will be like that.

People. It always comes back to people. Life would be so much easier if I could be happy on my own. I’ve touched on this subject before in this blog post but unfortunately, it looks like I’m fighting a losing battle on this one. Swimming against the tide.

Because no matter how much I try, it looks like I need people. I’ve gotten into the habit of seeing them as a complication, whether it’s ex-girlfriends, mates who always wanted to hang out, or colleagues who would keep wanting to chit chat at work when I was trying to get stuff done.

Maybe I need to accept that I do need people. I mean, people have needed people for millions of years, why on earth should I be any different?

So the question is how to go about changing things. What do I do? Be more active on Facebook (which I hate)? Start talking to everyone on Twitter? Add every mutual connection on LinkedIn?

Is that the modern way? Or is it just to go out in the real world and start talking to people? At the football the other night, I didn’t even do it to the guy in the seat next to me even though he was alone too.

I was too scared. How Pathetic. Easiest scenario imaginable and I couldn’t do it. I wanted to but I just couldn’t seem to take that step.

The slight issue I have at the moment is that I am 12 weeks away from my big trip and today I did a big check on my savings so far. Now, I’m on course to be where I want to be when I leave but I still have to be very careful and not splurge on anything too unnecessary.

But while I’m in this situation, I can’t do the things that could potentially change things for me. Such as look for a job in an office with other people, contact people to see if they want to go for a drink, or re-ignite the online dating scene.

On the plus side, the weeks seem to be flying by so I won’t feel like I’m in this purgatory for too much longer.

I tell you what though, once my trip starts, it will be do or die. I have to talk to people then. Have to. Because I know how it turns out when I do and I know how it turns out when I don’t.

And even though it scares the living shit out of me to ask people if they want to go for a beer or food or even just to walk up to someone and say “hello”, I know that when I have done it, I haven’t regretted it.

In fact, at this moment, I can’t think of a time when I’ve been shot down or the other person/people have said no, and only a couple of times when I’ve ended up having a bad time.

So, I guess it’s an irrational fear. I’m the obstacle. I’m the problem.

Man, I’ve got to get past this. Here’s the kicker, a lot of the time (although not always), I’m actually pretty good with people once the initial part is over. You know, the part where I’m terrified.

That’s enough rambling for one night.

I hope you’re not alone tonight. It’s overrated.

N x

The post that wants an instruction manual on life

People keep asking me about what I’m going to do when I come back from travelling. They ask me:

So, what are you going to do when you come back?

Or

So, will you live in London again when you come back?

Frankly, the thought of coming back scares the hell out of me. Reality. The real world. I hate it. I don’t know how to deal with it. Why can there not be an instruction manual on how to ‘do’ life? If you have one, can I borrow it?

I don’t know how to do it and I’ve never been very good at it to be honest.

If I could just switch myself off like I computer game, I would. Which is a pretty abnormal thought to have. I remember hearing the song “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen when I was a kid (probably about 10 years old?), and the lyric “I sometimes wish I’d never been born at all” and thinking, wow yeah that would have been great.

I hated school as a child growing up. All of it. Every day. I felt like I had the weight of the world on my shoulders. Struggled making friends. Low confidence. No self-esteem. Pretty average intelligence wise.

But even then I was like, ah I can’t be bothered with this. What’s the point? It’s so much hassle. But every day I just had to get through it. Put one foot in front of the other and just plough on through it in the hope that there my be some light at the end of the tunnel.

And now, here I am, seven weeks before my 30th birthday and although the circumstances have changed, I’m still that same little boy. Plodding on reluctantly. Everything is hassle. Everything is a headache and a massive effort.

Trying to find purpose and reason in doing anything when if someone came up to me and said, if you don’t fancy this life any more, press this button and you can do something else. Be someone else. Leave all this behind. You won’t be you any more. Well, I’d be over the moon.

Another thing people have asked me is what I’m doing for my 30th birthday. The reality is nothing. I don’t want to do anything. I hate being the centre of attention. I hate having the focus or spotlight on me. It makes me very uncomfortable.

Other people’s birthdays, wedding and whatever else I am more than happy to attend. But I don’t want to organise or host or arrange anything. The only thing I’d feel comfortable with is going to the pub with friends. That’s it. Something simple. Basic.

The idea of a cake and balloons and candles and cards and presents is not for me. If I have to do something just to appease other people, then so be it. They might think it’s really weird if I don’t.

Maybe this is just a darker moment, who knows. Maybe I will change my mind. It’s not like I don’t want to have a meal and/or drinks with my friends, it’s just that I don’t want to be any kind of focal point.

Honestly, I’d feel like I was putting them out. I don’t like the idea of people, even friends, making any kind of extra effort just for me. Like it’s not worth their while or something.

So, back to my original question, when my next bout of escapism ends, what then? It’d be so nice to escape forever. Permanent escapism.

I haven’t got the strength for the other option. My problem with school was constantly being told what to do and now that I have no one telling me what to do, I don’t know what to do – in the most general sense imaginable.

How messed up is that?

N x

That post that was ten minutes in

I planned and planned and planned to go for a walk at 4pm, kept checking the weather forecast and looking out the window. Yep, still dry. Yep, no rain forecast.

The second I step out the front door, what happens? Rain.

Actually, that’s not exactly true because it was more annoying than that. It started raining 10 minutes into my walk. 10 minutes in is annoying because at 10 minutes in to a walk, you’re committed to that walk.

You’re in. You’re doing it. You’re on it. If it starts raining 2 minutes in, fine, you turn round and go back. But I had to make a decision as to how committed I was to this walk.

Was I too far away from home to turn back now? Will the rain pass? Should I pack it in and turnaround and, more importantly, should I cross the road first so that I don’t just turn 180 degrees on the spot and look like a nut case?

Well, I did turn around because the clouds were getting darker and the rain heavier. Annoying.

So, I came home and wrote this blog post instead.

I love my walks because I work from home and it’s how I escape ‘the office’ environment. I usually go for 45-60 minutes and was really looking forward to it today because I had a stuffy head.

Had I been stuck inside all weekend though, it would have been worse. As it was I spent the weekend with friends and it was good. Surprisingly so. I think it’s because I tried to adjust.

I’ve had the feeling sometimes that my friends, with their spouses and their kids and their mortgages and their careers, are leaving me behind. So I asked them about these things. But I did it genuinely.

I talked about the things they’d be interested in as well, like my 1 year old niece. Potential Christmas gifts for her, what they bought theirs and so on.

I really listened to their answers and asked relevant follow up questions. I’ve just realised I sound like I’m talking about job interview techniques.

Sure, I talked with the lads about football and the usual daft things we discuss but I made the extra effort to widen the topic range, particularly with people’s partners who, let’s face it, you are only friends with because they are in a relationship with your actual friend.

But it was worth it, I think. Everyone seemed to have fun. I even tried briefly interacting with their kids, but I do mean brief – I haven’t undergone a complete personality transplant.

See here for my feelings on children and here for how I act around them.

Perhaps that’s what I’ll have to do from now on. I don’t mind. It wasn’t so painful.

I was invited to some carol singing event in a few weeks but it was a classic ‘wife/girlfriend wants to go, so husband/boyfriend is being dragged along so they can be a couple’ and I so would have been the seventh wheel. So I declined but I did agree to meet them all afterwards for dinner and drinks.

Dinner and drinks is much less seventh wheelie. Would I have been invited if I hadn’t been quite so chatty about kids and other stuff? I guess we’ll never know but it’s possible.

Maybe this is what I have to do to survive. Resisting the temptation of going kicking and screaming into adulthood.

I guess this is how I evolve.

I guess this is growing up.

N x

The post that was sitting there

I was sitting on the kitchen counter tonight listening to my microwave whirr. It was heating up my 3-day old pizza. And I just stared into the middle distance. At nothing. I felt dead inside.

Completely devoid of any feelings. Except loneliness. Boredom. Acceptance. And I suppose a feeling of denial that this was “normal” but this was accompanied with a feeling that nobody must ever know how I really spend my days and, particularly, my evenings.

Of course, I have a great excuse now for not doing anything, going out or spending money. My trip. I’m saving for my trip.

But then I wondered. Let’s say I had money. Let’s say I lived in a nicer area of London close to places that were nice to visit and go out it. Let’s say I didn’t share accommodation with strangers. Would I still be sitting there?

Still sitting on the kitchen counter feeling completely numb listening to a whirring microwave heat up 3-day old pizza? Pitch black outside. But for the whirring, deathly silence inside.

Because it was only a few weeks ago that I didn’t have a useful excuse for doing nothing. And the same situation arose time and again.

If I sat down and people asked me, “so tell me what you have done every evening for the past week”, I’d be mightily embarrassed to tell them. I’d make stuff up. I’m ashamed. I have no life to be proud of.

What do people do on their week nights? Me? My evenings always consist of the same thing:

  • Eat while watching an episode of Family Guy.
  • Learn some Spanish.
  • Watch something like Dexter or [insert TV show here] until I’m tired and then go to sleep.

The weekends, you ask? Exactly the same. But I would probably learn the Spanish during the day. This all takes place in the confines of a single room in the house.

At the weekends it’s worse actually. Because there is more time to fill. More time to be alone with my thoughts. I occasionally drink a bottle of cheap wine in the evenings to numb it. Make it go quicker. I used to use a glass. Can’t be bothered any more. Straight from the bottle.

When I’m alone with my thoughts, I go to dangerous places. Start thinking about the future. How I don’t have one. No prospects except boredom. No relationship. That I’m just going to have to go through the motions until… until what?

Let’s not go there. Actually, this is where I stop thinking because I don’t want to go there. This is where the wine bottle comes into play.

I don’t know why I’m like this. Sometimes I’d love to be somebody else. Have somebody else’s life. Somebody else’s thoughts. Brain. Mind.

I get up each day knowing exactly what will happen. It’s so hard to find the energy. I get up, shower. Make sure I can’t hear anyone else in the kitchen because I will go to great lengths to avoid making contact or conversation with my housemates.

Then I go down, get cereal and a cup of coffee. Return to my room. Read some football websites. Then work intermittently until I get hungry for lunch. Same kitchen precaution takes place then I make a sandwich and eat it in my room.

More intermittent work until 5pm when I either go for a walk of usually around 45 minutes or make dinner. Then it’s Family Guy, Spanish and Dexter until bedtime. Every god damn day.

The monotony. The predictability. It’s killing me. Inside I’m dying.

A lot of it boils down to not having guaranteed income and the insecurities that come along with that but there are deeper issues than that at play. I know there are. Such as my personality and characteristics.

I don’t talk to anyone. For days sometimes. Aside from a “thank you” to the person at the checkout in the supermarket.

I just don’t know how I got like this. I think I’m getting worse. Worse in social situations. With friends I used to be able to talk with easily. I can’t any more. I’ve got less and less in common with them.

And I just get the feeling they are starting to think I’m a bit weird. A bit strange for still living in shared accommodation. For not having a proper career. For not having a girlfriend. I’m 30 in two months and maybe they’re right. Maybe it is a weird situation to be in.

So, I have to continue to wear this mask. By booking a trip. Because I don’t want to stay here and be reminded over and over again by people and their partners that I am alone. Reminded by everyone around me who is building something, a career, a family, a life, that I am building nothing.

So I remove myself from the situation. If I’m not in a position to build any of those things, that I can’t fail at the them and I can’t be judged by others for failing to build them.

Jesus, I’ve somehow just absolutely spilled my guts here.

I just wish time could fast forward.

See ya.

N x

The post that’s rolling the dice

Gosh, where to start?

First thing to talk about is where I’ve been since the 7th of October, which was when I last posted. The answer is nowhere physically, but mentally, I have been a million and one miles away.

In my previous post, I said how I was still having sleepless nights about a really quite… no… for me what is a MASSIVE decision in my life. I was having sleepless nights over a decision about whether to go travelling through South America.

But it wasn’t just about that.

It was about giving up my cosy work situation, and risking not getting it back again.

It was about spending a LOT of money on another major solo adventure, when I know full well I’m not the best solo traveller.

It was about leaving my comfort zone at a time when I’ve never been more afraid of doing so.

It was about leaving a comfortable, if not perfect, living situation in terms of cost of rent, housemates, location, etc.

What would I come back to?

Can I earn enough money?

How long can I go for?

Is this just fanciful nonsense?

So, while all these things were swirling around my mind, day and night, night and day. Every day, I forgot this blog even existed. I was so consumed by this decision.

It was really impacting my life in a big way. I couldn’t concentrate on anything nor sleep at night.

Get ready for an analogy I love (and have quite possibly shared with you before elsewhere on this blog).

There are so many aspects of my life where I have rolled the dice and I’ve gotten a three. Now, in many ways, there’s nothing wrong with a three. A three’s not bad. It’s not that great but it’s certainly not a disaster.

Sometimes though, you want more than a three. You can accept a three for a while and understand that under certain circumstance you can have every reason to be happy with a three.

I can’t shake this feeling deep down that I want to pick the dice up again, give them a shake, and roll.

So, I’m doing it. I’m going. These aren’t just empty words either. I have booked my flights. It’s confirmed. I’m going in March and returning in July.

I can’t describe the adrenaline rush when I proceeded through each step of the flight booking process. At the part where I input my card details, it all became very real. But the moment when I actually had to click “confirm”? That was terrifying.

But, Jesus Christ, it made me feel alive. Not only that. I felt happy. Proud almost. I did something. Something big. Something not many other people do. Literally and metaphorically.

Because it’s not just about going backpacking. It’s about what going backpacking represents. It represents me saying, you know, what this scares me more than any of my other trips by a long way, and I may not know what I’m getting myself into, but I’m doing it anyway.

Because, fuck me, I’m stagnating to the point of a pointless existence. Not to be too melodramatic, but if I continue my current lifestyle for much longer, than I may as well not be alive. I’d essentially be waiting for my own death. Days becomes weeks, which become months, then years and you’ve wasted the part of your life when you’re actually still young and healthy enough to DO something.

I’ve got to try. I’ve GOT to.

I don’t know anyone else who is like me. 29 years old, single, alone, very little social life, and on a tiny income (which necessitates very little social life, so there’s something of a vicious circle there).

But the thing is, this is the life I chose for myself. Minimalistic. So there’s no one to blame here but myself. Every girl that’s been crazy enough to go out with me (since my very first girlfriend), I’ve broken up with. I leave them. Similarly, I quit any job I’ve had where there’s actually any chance of a career developing.

The truth is I don’t know of any other way to shake up life and roll the dice other than the ultimate act of escapism – travel. And make no mistake, this is escapism. Big time.

I’m being sensible about this though; I’m going to try to make sure that when I come back I have some money, so there’s a platform there and I’m not broke.

Will I come back to live in London? Will I end up with a worse or better houseshare? Will I end up with a better or worse job? Will I end up happier? I don’t know but it’s all part of the game. I’m risking all of these things by rolling the dice.

Yes, I could come up with a six, of course I could. I could also roll a one.

But I just can’t stay on a three any more. It might even be a two sometime, I don’t know.

Hell, who knows, I might not even come back. Maybe I’ll find a way to keep on going.

This was one of the major factors in my decision to go – I couldn’t come up with a compelling enough reason to stay. Not one. There’s no one and nothing here for me.

Let’s not end on a negative note, and I don’t want you to think I’m feeling negative about my plans. I’m very excited, very scared and quite anxious. I still don’t know if I’m doing the right thing but only time will let me know that now.

I’m taking control, I’m making an impact and I’m fucking doing something about it.

In 19 weeks, I’ll be gone and that is a fantastic feeling.

N x

p.s – wow, 403 views on this little corner of the internet now! I appreciate your interest in my self-indulgent rambling.

The post that can’t sleep

I’m still having sleepless nights over my decision as to whether or not to go to South America. Last night I was awake from 2:30 until 5 in the morning.

I know what you’re thinking. For God’s sake man just decide already! And a couple of days ago, I more or less had decided.

The decision was to go.

But a spanner has been thrown into the works. A financial one. As mentioned in previous posts, I’m self-employed and while this suits me in many ways, it is NOT guaranteed income.

Therefore, it’s hard to plan ahead more than about a month. So planning for a trip that may or may not take place in 6 months’ time has its difficulties.

And, lo an behold, the work dramatically dried up over the last few days. The last 4-5 days have been really dry. I’ve had it happen over a 2-3 day period before but never for this long.

Which has cast a shadow over this whole thing.

I can’t be bothered to go into the intricacies of it but I’ve been going at it with a calendar, a calculator and researching costs and best times to travel and all sorts of other things to try to see whether what I want to do is feasible.

At the moment, I have enough for the trip itself. But what I don’t have is enough for a flight, insurance or the all important buffer of cash for when I return so that I don’t come back with £0. I need a chunk to restart life again with when I return. If I go, that is.

So, a million and one things have been swirling around my mind and it’s driving me mad.

You see, there’s an ideal time for me to go. That time is February or March. So, I’m up against a deadline here. If I were to continue to earn what I’ve been earning over the past few months, then no problem. I think I’d have my decision made.

But I can’t guarantee it and it’d be a massive gamble to start booking and paying for things only for my income to plummet between now and any departure date.

So, what to do, what to do, what to do.

I’ve been looking at the minimum I need to earn and still go away for, maybe, 4 months rather than the 6 I had originally thought about. I haven’t done the full sums for that yet though and I still have to decide if this would fit in climate wise. This is an important factor for me.

These are such first world problems, I know.

Now that load of verbal diarrhoea is over with, let’s see if I can actually sleep tonight.

I might do some sums first.

Who knows, I may even come to a definite conclusion. Or just drive myself up the wall by uncovering new and interesting ways in which this whole idea is ridiculous and implausible and I should just drop the whole thing.

Or neither.

Anyway, good night.

N x