My second memory of the year is the more important. It’s not so much a memory of a specific event, as of a feeling. The feeling I had when we had moved in to our new flat together, the friend who had helped us move had left, and we were alone in our own place for the first time. A feeling of immense love and unbounded opportunity.
After I whinged to her about life for a while, my friend (and regular reader) K set me a challenge. Think of six happy memories, and the places they happened. It took me a long time, but here they are:
- The first night I spent with another person (in a flat on South Clerk St, Edinburgh).
- The Shimura Curves gig I went to with regular reader Miranda (at the Notting Hill Arts Club).
- The first time I escorted someone on a kissogram job (in a bar in Castleford)
- Climbing a hill in Dumfriesshire with friends
- Going to an event in London a couple of months back with my friend Wendy (in the catacombs beneath London Bridge station).
- Snuggling up to one of my exes, in their kitchen, which was painted bright blue and yellow (on Mayfield Road, Edinburgh).
There are probably more happy memories, somewhere, that aren’t too tainted by bad things. These were the first six that came to mind, though.
I was supposed to be off up to Scotland again this weekend, incidentally, with K. She was planning a trip up there to visit various places with another friend, who had to drop out, so she invited me along to take up the spare bedroom. Annoyingly, though, I can’t get the time off work. “Oh, no, you can’t have that day off,” said Big Dave, “I booked it months ago.” Grrrr.
It’s the end of the week again. It’s hot, and sunny, and I’ve just been zooming up and down the motorway to Another Part Of The Forest and back. Windows wound down, music on, it really does leave me feeling cheerful.*
Things seem to be changing all around me. I’ve always taken a vicarious interest in seeing other people become magically happy. There are a handful of people I know, and several people I don’t know whose blogs I read, whose lives and relationships are changing in wonderful ways. Some of them are completely positive they’re doing the right thing, some of them less so, but in general they do seem to be brimming with happiness.**
I arrived back at the office just now, planning this post, to sit down and write it during my lunch break. As soon as I sat back at my desk, the homophobic branch manager from Another Part Of The Forest came through to say hello. “I’m leaving,” he said.
“Back off to your branch?” I knew he’d been over at head office this morning.
“No, completely. I handed my notice in last night, and I’m leaving now.”
Which, really, fitted in with everything I’ve been thinking about. People all around me are all having their lives changed.
Another beautiful thing I’ve seen: driving home from York at about midnight Wednesday night, past the steelworks. Something was going on there, because the whole place was lit up in an orange flaming glow. Industrial beauty, almost as inspiring as seeing a happy person.
* but I try not to think about all those carbon emissions.
** I know blogs aren’t real life, of course. People withhold things. And if you’re worried I’m talking about you: I might be, but I’m not trying to make a comment about your own specific situation. This is about everyone in general.