Taillights guiding me through the dark,
The only other sign of life on this lonely road.
Destination locked in but it doesn’t feel like home,
And again my thoughts begin to wander…
Not for the first time I think about life in perpetual midnight
The multitudes asleep, uncaring
(Easier to deal with than the usual awake, uncaring)
The roads my playground for eternity
Snap out of it as I see the road block ahead
Guilt and uncertainty wash over me as panic bursts my heart,
See the side road, make the turn,
Alone again on the road to somewhere that isn’t here
Single track roads and humpback bridges,
Blind turns and misty crossroads…
They used to hang people here you know?
But if they want to hang me they’ll have to catch me first.
Through sleeping villages and across fenceless fields
On, on into the night, every mile closer to home
Fills me with more and more despair;
Because home brings sleep, and sleep brings dreams
And dreams force me to confront who I am again.
Been a while since I logged into WordPress. This used to be my go-to place for venting, for pouring out the crap which had built up over the previous day, but recently it has fallen into disuse. Originally it was because I was too busy (or at least that’s what I told myself), but now I think there’s more to it than that.
On the whole, life has been pretty poor recently. I’m under pressure at work due to managerial changes which I am strongly opposed to. My grandmother is seriously ill in hospital. I have become increasingly distant from my friends. Things are always worse in the school holidays, as the absence of human contact becomes acute. Yesterday was particularly bad. Motivation was on the floor. The few things I’d planned to do never happened, and I found my mind straying to places I never thought it would again. Needless to say, I didn’t like it.
Depression’s a strange beast. Everyone’s depression manifests in a different way. To those who have never suffered from depression, it’s largely incomprehensible. But even to those with a long history of depression, the things which help them control it may not work for other people. On the whole I do a reasonably good job of keeping it in check, but the recent combination of factors has made me realise that sometimes it just isn’t enough.
I’m fairly pragmatic, and as such I’m mostly planned for these situations. The problem I face right now is finding someone to talk to about things. Someone who isn’t going to try to offer advice. Someone who isn’t going to try to “make me happy”, and someone who isn’t going to get pissed off by my constant stream of misery. And that’s not easy to find. I have plenty of friends who are understanding, but most of them don’t really know how to deal with my blackest moods. The few that do have been unreachable or tied up with other things.
And so, bizarrely, I found myself reaching out to people I barely knew, or complete strangers. Things had reached the point where I didn’t even care to whom I poured out my confessions, I just knew I needed to get some things said. It was a bizarre feeling, having spoken so frankly and honestly with people who didn’t know me. The instant regret I felt was tempered by the feeling of relief at unloading my burden. I have no idea if the people I spoke to cared, or even understood what I was saying, but just the act of talking (or typing) allowed me to free up room in my mind to process what was going on and try to effect a move towards some sort of solution.
I kept coming back to the same thought in my mind. I need to get out of this town. I hate it here. I’ve always hated it here. The problem is, I’m not even sure it’s the town which is the problem. It’s the country. Don’t get me wrong, I think this is a beautiful country – but the way it’s being run is abhorrent to me, and thanks to the “democracy” we have, I will forever be a victim of the tyranny of the uneducated majority who vote to maintain that abhorrent status quo. The main parties change, but the power remains the same.
So where do I go from here? Well, I don’t know. I’m currently in the process of renewing my passport. I have a reasonable amount of money in my bank, and thanks to my job I have periods throughout the year when I have a lot of free time. So my plan is to travel when I can. If I find somewhere I like, maybe I’ll start looking into more permanent plans there. I just know that right now, I don’t feel at home. I never have, and I need to fix that. Maybe it can’t be fixed, but I need to try.
Maybe once that’s sorted I can start trying to figure out how to stop being so utterly alone.
Woke two hours early
And began making blueprints
For our exodus
I got a call from my mother today. Apparently my grandmother has wrangled some sort of boat trip holiday for me. Pending confirmation, I’d leave on Monday for a week, living on a canal boat. I don’t know which canal.
So I fully intend to spend my time leisurely cruising the waterways, and trying to get as far as I can away from this town. The downside is that I’ll be trying to drive a narrowboat on my own. Apparently this is tricky. Still, I’m hoping to not sink. At least not in the first day.
I’m toying with the idea of taking my jolly roger and making a nuisance of myself, pulling up alongside other boats and performing boarding actions in order to plunder their booty. At the same time though I doubt many people would find it amusing. People these days have no sense of humour you see.
I predict that my week will consist mostly of exploring the waterways of the UK, taking some photos, reading and trying to work out how the hell to feed myself. Sound good? No.
Sounds fucking awesome.
To travel the world;
Is that too much to hope for?
Take my hand and run.
This place chews up dreams
And spits them back out
Malformed and obscene;
And so, riddled with doubt,
I make a slight change,
My plans rearrange,
And the trap slowly closes around me.
Countless dead ends,
A pub on each corner,
I look for my friends
But it’s way past last orders.
I have to reshape
My life and escape,
But I’m more trapped the more that I struggle.
This dead-nowhere town,
Devoid of all soul,
The shops all run down;
I can’t break the hold!
I scream to be free
But this town has claimed me;
I’m chewed up, and spat out, and broken.
Last night was a good one. A good night for reaching out, a good night for meeting people. A good night for initiating change.
Remember a few days ago I mentioned how I got a Latvian photographer’s business card while busking? Well, curiosity got the better of me and I decided to send an email his way. I mean, what harm could it do? We arranged to meet in a local pub for a couple of drinks and a chat.
So it turns out this guy is trying to build up a portfolio.The reason he’s trying to build up a portfolio is that he’s trying to ESCAPE. He came here to the UK with dreams of making it big. He wanted to take photographs of people, and had a plan of sorts. Work in a warehouse while he builds up his portfolio, send out some feelers, make some contacts, sign some contracts, move to London, make more money, travel the world. Seems like a reasonable plan. I remember having similar plans.
So what went wrong? Well, he somehow washed up here in Rugby, the town of shattered dreams, and things just sort of stalled.
As we talked, I realised that although we came from two completely different cultures, we shared a lot of goals and ambitions. Both of us are creative types. Both of us have the remains of a dream smouldering in the back of our minds. Both of us are stuck in this dead end town with no real friends and no real idea how to find like minded people.
So we talked about his plans for a photoshoot involving me and my guitar. We discussed the work he’d done, the music I’d made. I mentioned wanting to form a band. He mentioned his housemate was a drummer. It’s interesting how a single contact can set off so many ripples which reach the far edges of shores long thought unreachable. He’s passed my cantact details on. We’ll see how that goes.
He told me of his travels around Europe before washing up here. We discussed our shared love of airport terminals, of the temporary friends you meet on long journeys, about how often those people you know you are never going to see again are the ones you are the most honest with…
This kindled a new idea in me. I’ve always wanted to travel the world and tell my story, but now I have a new goal. I want to travel the world. I want to hear other peoples’ stories, and I want to tell stories about those stories. I mean I could start now, if any of you out there have stories to tell, by all means email them to me. I’ll keep everything nicely anonymous too.
But we also just started chatting about life in general. Both of us have an interest in the Soviet Union of old, but we grew up on opposite sides of the iron curtain. It was fantastic to hear the thoughts of someone who had seen those soviet secrets first hand…. That led to a discussion about abandoned military bases, and abandoned buildings in general. I mentioned the abandoned airbase nearby, at Church Lawford. His eyes lit up. We arranged a trip to grab some photos and generally explore the area.
We ended the conversation with a discussion on how society has never accepted us, and how that has perpetually frustrated us. We shook hands, both echoing the same phrase:
“Let’s change it.”
I left the pub feeling like I’d made a new friend. It’s difficult to describe the feelings I had as I walked home in the light of the pale evening sun, just reflecting on how that one chance meeting, one casually sent email could have such far reaching consequences.
Sensitive dependence on initial conditions. That’s the fundamental principle of Chaos Theory. I feel Eris’ hands at work here. I love that crazy bitch.