Tag Archives: friends

Talented Friends – Tobias ben Jacob and Lukas Drinkwater

I just had to share these couple of video’s with you.  I feel truly blessed to have some really talented friends.  Seriously just sit back and listen to these tunes they really are wonderful.

I can’t wait to see them perform at the Larmer tree festival on Friday

Goodbye 2014, Thank You, And What A Ride It Has Been

So it is here, the end of yet another year and what a year it has been.  It is traditional to spend a little time reflecting on what has gone in the past year as we make our way into the new one to come.  So often we reflect on the sad or bad things that have happened and we think about how things will be better in the year to come.  As I sit here I cannot think of a single bad thing that has happened to me or my immediate family this year, it has been a year of almost constant highs.

My lovely wife has as always been a source of constant love and support, she recently left her job and is looking forward to an exciting new chapter in her life in January.  My son is doing well at school and is developing into a caring, happy, pleasant and well adjusted young man.  My nieces have made us all proud this year, Erin is doing well at Cambridge University, Dani did well in her GCSE exams and continues to develop her love of horses and her equestrianism.  Kirsty and her husband Clint have brought a new member, baby Lucy, into the family and her sister Karlyn and partner John will be bringing another new arrival in 2015.

I retired from work as a result of my depression back in February.  I confess I was a little apprehensive about this but it has been wonderful.  Only by leaving the police service behind have I come to realise how much it dragged me down, how deeply unhappy it made me.  Retirement has allowed me to leave behind the people who drained me and left me so unhappy.  I made a resolution last year to break away from negative people and to make more effort to spend time with friends, family and people I care about.  I have managed to do this and it has been a hugely freeing experience.  I was concerned about how I would spend my time, a concern that was totally unfounded, my days now are filled with creativity and things I enjoy doing.

I have written well over 400 articles on this blog, had well over 50k visitors and close to 1200 followers in 6 short months.  The blogging community is friendly and supportive and my blogging has lead to me waiting articles for an online music magazine and an online news outlet.  I have developed my interest in photography, completed a University short photography course and upgraded my camera equipment.  I look forward to undertaking more courses and developing my skills in the year to come.

Musically my year has been off the scale.  I have seen at the very least 270 live bands at the gigs and festivals I have attended.  I have continued to learn to play guitar, I am far from great but I do love to play and I look forward to continuing to learn and improve in 2015.  Over the course of the summer the weather was even kind with just one festival being a wet one.  I have my fingers crossed for similar in 2015.

Over the course of the past year I have made so many new friends and acquaintances, people who expect nothing from you other than to share your company and a beer.  people who want to share good times, spread happiness and enjoy life.  Thank you one and all, you know who you are.

So 2015 arrives with so much to look forward to, new lives to welcome, weddings to attend and no doubt numerous more happy experiences with friends, new and old.

So come on 2015, bring it on, we are ready and waiting.  Happy New Year to all my friends, old and new, to my family, but most of all to my wife and son.  it is going to be another great year.

The essentials of life

Yesterday was a funny day!  I mean funny as in laughter, as opposed to funny peculiar.  Well actually scrap that last comment, there was a fair bit of peculiar on display too.  We had friends over for dinner you see.  

Dinner was a simple affair, home made smoked salmon and smoked mackerel fishcakes served with a warm beetroot salad, stuffed Chicken Breasts wrapped in proscetto followed by cheesecake and topped of with a range of local cheeses. The evening was fuelled by rather a lot of wine.  Actually the wine helped but in reality the evening was fuelled by laughter.

Laughter!  Such a precious commodity, one that we perhaps take for granted.  In the past couple of years I have come to realise just how precious a commodity laughter is.  I suffer from depression you see and depression has a tendency to suck laughter out of your life.  You certainly don’t feel like laughing when you are ill but more than that people around you don’t feel that they can laugh either.   There you are, a little black cloud sucking the laughter out of the room by making your friends and family feel that it is somehow wrong to be happy when they are around you.  It’s not true of course.  How people act around you has little effect on how you feel when you are ill.  For me at least it is great to see people laughing when they are around you.  It means they are comfortable, it probably also means that you appear better, at least to some degree.P7195389

As I reflected on my weekend I got to thinking about my summer.  It has been really busy and thankfully a lot of people have come into my life.  As I have travelled around my music festivals this year I have been able to relate to people in a social setting.  I have been happy to chat and mix rather than shunning people and most importantly I have made some wonderful new friends.  Now I won’t pretend that I am ‘better’, I am not.   I cannot deal with any type of stress, even small levels of stress can send me into a tailspin.  I am still taking large doses of medication, I still feel very poorly at times but having said that, being retired on medical grounds has helped me so much.  Not having to face the daily grind has removed a huge amount of the pressure of daily life, I am grateful for that as it has allowed me to take a very important step in my life.

P7195372That step sounds like a simple one, but for those suffering from depression it is massive.  I have allowed people into my life!  Sounds simple doesn’t it.  I have been able to talk to people, to realise that they are willing to accept me for who I am, that they don’t always want something from me and that most people are warm, kind, caring and generous individuals.  I have met so many wonderful people over the last 6 months that my faith in human nature has been, at least to some degree, restored.    Those people have brought something back into my life, something that, at times, I thought had gone forever.  They have brought back laughter.  I shall be forever in their debt.