Friday, 9 October 2015

So...the elephant in the room

I bought a house.

Well a townhouse as they call it here.

A 2 bedroom, single floor building, with a garage and a roof terrace across the entire property.

It's awesome. With views over the bay and the eastern suburbs, like this:

(The wires are for the trolley bus that stops directly outside)

And more importantly it's double glazed, insulated and has a heat pump. It even has a DVS. That will mean nothing to non NZ residents, because you lucky bastards all have central heating. Not so here, where I doubt even 1% of homes are double glazed. And it's fecking cold here when the wind picks up.

So yeah, I'm chuffed to bits.

But that's not what this post is about. It's about women.

Or rather how I can't talk to women. Certain women anyway.

I have many female friends, some amongst my closest, and I happily engage in many (some) witty (to me) conversations every day. Until a certain event happens - a potentially available woman I find attractive enters my life.

And then I freeze. Completely. For all it's doing to my appeal I may as well be a stalker urinating in her mailbox for no apparent reason.

(I had to recently clarify with a female friend I became very good friends with that nothing was going to happen - and was mightily relieved to hear that we both agreed it wouldn't. I don't do complication and it would've made me incapable of being in her presence.)

I've thought long and hard how, now being old and all that, how I can't do this. My conclusion is this - fear of failure. I can talk, and bore, the arse of any individual but if something important is on the line then it affects me. And someone who may just be the one will never even see me because I bail entirely.

Online I can meet people because that reaction never happens (because until you see them you don't know if there's a spark), and indeed I met my wife that way.

But this inability to pursue the women I'd like to speak to, means I easily fall prey to those that wish to take advantage of my naive and trusting nature. Can I fix it? And even if I could would it be too late?

I cannot express in words how much I miss just holding the person I love whilst we fall asleep. I cannot express in words how much the women I can say that about have destroyed me totally.

I think, perhaps, that it's a good thing I spare myself from that happening again.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Living the dream

When I first moved to New Zealand I decided I could now live my life the way I wanted to, as opposed to feeling the need to conform to something unrealistic.

Well, within reason anyway.

I still had a part of me that wanted to settle down, but after what happened before I left I knew that was going to take a while.

I wanted to travel a lot, but bills had to be paid so I needed to get a job.

So I did something I'd always wanted to do - I bought a truck. Not a lorry, but what they call a truck here would be a 4X4 in the UK. Albeit a older, rougher type.

I bought a 1988 Mitsubishi Pajero (a Shogun in the UK) with less than 200,000km on the clock, spent a not inconsiderable amount of money sorting out some fundamental issues and then went on a few trips. In the New Year I'm going on a week's trip to the South Island to do several hundred kilometers of off-road tracks and river crossings.

I could never have owned one of these in the UK, it would've been utterly pointless and very expensive. But over here it's a great thing to have as there's so much countryside to explore and distant places to visit.

I'll be hoping over time I can let a bit more of my old life go and learn to be a bit more carefree, but old habits die hard.

Saturday, 29 August 2015


No matter how old I get.

No matter how wise I get.

(And I'm pretty wise nowadays)

I still get drunk and do stupid things, or say stupid things.

It's part of my charm.

But I think I'm the most harmless person on the planet.

Or maybe I'm drunk.....

Ooooh, mindfuck.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

I'm flagging....

I'm totally knackered for sure - partying too much and working mentally hard on projects - but that's not what this post is about.

You may or may not have heard that NZ is having a referendum on changing it's flag. In fact that's not true, it's having referenda. Although rather than ask if they wish to change the flag and *then* have a choice it's doing it the other way round.

Which is completely mental.

However I'm now a resident so I can vote to keep the old one, just to annoy those that want a change. Woop.

They had over 10,000 submissions from the public and narrowed it down to 40 almost identical designs (which you can see here). Ferns, waves and the same colours. blah.

Sadly they didn't take my favourite design, which I like so much I've put it on the spare tyre cover on my car:

How can you not love a kiwi with laser eyes?

It's a foregone conclusion that they'll keep the old design and spend $26m finding this out. Just goes to show you can run away as far as you like and you'll still find the same old government bullshit.

Monday, 24 August 2015

The Return of the King (of nonsense posts)

Greetings, or welcome back if you ever used to follow this blog when I posted semi-regularly!

SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED since I last posted so I thought I'd do this in a Q&A format to forestall any questions people may have. I say 'people', possibly 'person who may stumble across this in a google search in three years'. But I digress....

So where have you been?

Initially at home, then in a pretty deep well of depression, then decided to fuck everything into a cocked hat and sold my house and quit my job, then moved to New Zealand one year ago this week.

What made you do all of that?

After my wife died I discovered the rather unpleasant truth (or some of it at least) about her. I'll detail some of that later, but suffice to say it crushed me completely. I'd hated my job for a while and only stayed there so that we could get the visa for her to move to the UK - 18 months later of still being in the same boring job she committed suicide two days before it was due to be submitted.

So I was going to quit my job anyway, and change house to avoid the constant reminders. I could've stayed in Bristol but I reasoned I could just start again anywhere. I headed (via Singapore) to New Zealand to see a friend, liked Wellington and stayed. Took me two weeks to find a job and get sponsored and now I'm a resident!

Isn't it cold all the time in Wellington?

And England isn't?

I mean why New Zealand?

In simple terms - long way from people, not many people (I have my introvert moments still), stunning countryside but mainly because I've been made to feel welcome by some of the loveliest people in the world (I have my extrovert moments too).

But what about your cats?

Well Floyd died in 2013 and after I'd decided to move Pink suddenly reappeared 10 miles outside of Bristol after 8 years away. She moved straight back in and settled like she'd not been away. Of course plans were in place to go and so I took her with me which is UNBELIEVABLY EXPENSIVE.

She loved it here, cuddled everything and everybody. Then died of a sudden heart attack on the bed I was sleeping in after three months.

I was a little bit upset at the time.

More upset than your wife dying?

Harsh but fair question. At the respective moments, no - the person I loved enough to get married to and pretty much dedicate my existence to for six years......well....that was incredibly upsetting, confusing with the circumstances of her death, and left a huge hole in my heart.

On the other hand, I shared more companionship over a longer period with Pink. And she never argued with me when I talked to her (yes I talked to my cat all the time. So what?) And she never hurt me like my wife did on numerous occasions.

I think I feel a greater sense of loss over Pink, but my wife hurts more.

Circumstances of her death?

Yes, well you may recall she had an incurable and untreatable brain tumour. It steadily got worse over her final year and she was sectioned for self-harming four times. The last time I flew out to look after her and when I visited her in the hospital she was curled into a corner colouring pictures with crayons. She was smarter than me and she'd been reduced to this.

She always reacted to me being around and after two weeks she was released and was functioning almost normally. I returned to England to finalise the visa and had been back for less than 24 hours before she vanished in San Francisco, told someone she'd taken all her meds and died on a beach overlooking her favourite place - the ocean.

You said the truth was unpleasant?

I'm not going into all the detail yet, that'll come out over time. Let's just say she tried to erase all the evidence but left enough behind that I know about the four long-term concurrent boyfriends she had during our relationship, I know about the (at least) ten other people she fucked on a regular basis during our relationship, I know she worked as a prostitute via CraigsList for the first year after we started going out, I know the rape she suffered was actually a regular sex game where she offered herself to men for free via the internet and it went wrong, I know about her conviction for heroin smuggling when she was 18, I know about her addiction to heroin for many years (they weren't scars from a house fire), I know about her real age (9 years away from what she told everyone), I know about her real name, I know about the three (at least) previous lives across the US with the aliases and invented backgrounds, I know.....lots....

Wow, that's a lot to process!

Tell me about it. And that's not the worst thing I know (which wasn't even to me).

What was that? Or do I not want to know?

When pretending to be Jewish in New York she worked as an au pair (two years before we met). She got pregnant by the father and returned to California to have the baby.

She aborted the pregnancy, but didn't tell the father or any of her New York friends.

A friend in California was pregnant at the time so she faked her belly in photos and even posed in a hospital gown in a hospital bed with the new born. She sent all of these to the father and blackmailed him for eight years into paying for a child that never existed.

When she died the first thing her New York friends asked about was how the child was. I had to break it to them gently, which wasn't how I was feeling at the time.

Okay, that's cold. How did you deal with all of this?

I drank lots. I did a lot of 'paying to talk to someone who nods' therapy. I wrote everything that happened in a book. I cried a fair amount too.

Are you okay now?

No, of course not, but I am better. I still need to talk to people, to feel some empathy with someone, which is a strain on people who didn't even know you a year ago. I've probably annoyed most of them, but not enough that they're not my friends.

It's given me a sense of perspective I didn't have before. Not to the same level anyway. I help people more now for sure.

Have you found someone else?

Ha ha ha. No, but I don't half miss cuddling.

Having said that - this last year has helped me heal a lot. Am I ready to risk being hurt again? I don't know but I'm not adverse to giving it a try. And I couldn't say that two months ago.

Are you going to start doing this properly again?

Well this post is enough for a month's worth normally. It's been good to write this down though, it all helps a little. I think I may just be inspired to keep this up.

At the end of the day we never know what the future may bring, and that's a super-positive outcome.