What a year – I promise this is not just another end of year round-up. Although admittedly I may be forced to recall certain events but will steer clear of an almanac style list in date order.
January… that was a joke by the way (insert polite titter here)
Some years go by with barely a ripple of great excitement, disappointment or unexpected adventure. Often years meld into 2, 3, 5 and before you know it you have lived half a decade or more of unremarkable life events but with the usual roll-call of births, weddings and funerals; such is the usual circle of life. Our years may be garnished with a little or a lot of things like new jobs, travel and maybe even be infused with a little bit of romance. By its very nature romance is often associated with earlier unhappy or muted endings that may eventually lead into happier beginnings with someone else. Yes some years go by with barely a ripple but some just start crazy and get even crazier for one reason or another. This last year was one such year for me.
But this isn’t about me… Wars that people had began to forget about just rumbled on with most victims, as usual, innocent civilians. Syria, Yemen, the endless war inside the British Conservative party, which all got so much bloodier and pointless. Brexit is now so dead in the water that it has begun to sink headlong into the oceanic abyss, where it was going to drag the rest of us until it eventually lands on the murky bottom to be devoured by the ravenous carrion crabs that wait down there for dead and dying things. The other 27 Euro leaders have scented the blood of Theresa May and all of the other clowns who driven by self interest and downright racism and ignorance have started to scuttle back into the woodwork where they came from. The EU will, quite rightly, not give another inch – or should I say centimetre – to help May sell her dead dog of a deal to Parliament. It is my hope and the hope of the vast majority of people in the UK that by this time next year Brexit, with all of its associated chaos and staggering waste of energy and money will be a distant memory, a stern lesson learned from the humiliating reality check we are now living through. A thing only referred to in hushed tones.
I built a boat – a beautiful big canal boat that ended up costing me a more comfortable summer because I had to fit it out in London in the unusual extreme heat of 2018. Imagine working inside a steel hulled boat in 35C! But now it sits completed, majestic in its winter mooring waiting for me to take it on its first cruise in the coming spring. I do love my boat but Never again!
Trump continues to confound predictions of an imminent departure because of impeachment or a direct indictment from the special counsel Robert Mueller. Despite Donald being as bent as the proverbial 9 bob note and continuing to display the IQ and temperament of a petulant 9th Grade school boy, somehow his ‘base’ or ‘the deplorable’ as they have come to be know still managed to help him hang onto one of the houses of power in the November midterms. He as usual declared it as a massive victory , as if he had gained seats instead of losing so many he lost control of Congress. But I wonder how he will review his victory once impeachment proceedings against him get underway and most of his family and business associates begin to fear the approaching knock at the door from the Police.
In October I became a Grandfather for the first time – a title that gradually gets easier to slip from the tongue. It dates me of course, but I am now of an age when vanity begins to take a back seat to more important events in one’s life. Sadly the premature death of a dear friend also coloured much of last Autumn and resulted in not just grief but an all too familiar situation, when a blood relative (who shall remain nameless) decided greed and her own needs were more important than her dead daughters wishes for the stable future of the granddaughter she professed to love. These were important wishes that she said she was happy to help fulfil right up until the moment she discovered a large insurance payout.
So if this post carries one message it is this: Make sure you have a will, a written and appropriately witnesses Last Will and Testament that people will find when you are gone. But most importantly if you want something special or some protection or guardianship of your children to be assigned to someone else, someone other than your next of kin then PUT IT IN WRITING in a document that will stand up in court. My friend could not have expected to die in her 30’s and although she was suspicious enough of one particular relative to at least record her wishes in conversations and emails with myself and others until she could get around tosigning a notarised document – because she didn’t do this the whole sorry thing quickly descended into an unnecessary nightmare, that few of us who were touched by it will quickly recover from.
Anyway, although this wasn’t my annual round-up – let’s make some promises for next year:
Let’s talk more but chat less
Let’s call more and text less
Let’s meet more but Skype less
and Let’s get out more and vegetate in front of the TV less.
I hope you had a good one and wish you all good luck for a happier, healthier and yes let’s hope a quieter New Year for 2019.