Go….stop….pause…and go again.

So it has been a very long time since I blogged and I just don’t know why that is to be fair. Let me fill you in…

So the last time we spoke I had been a 2 dates and they weren’t going to be taken further, if I didn’t tell you that before well that’s some news for you, sorry to leave you hanging all this time. Dating took a back seat to be fair and I think that was a good choice as I decided to embark on a new adventure.

Go….So I have been at the mercy of public transport all my life near enough, never really learning to drive and to be fair that was mostly coming from a complete lack in interest in cars, driving and the whole costs and expense of it all. I have a free trains pass so that get to the places I need or want t get to so it’s always been fine. Add to that I have always had a fella that has had a car and driven me around to the places I have need to get to. As we know now this is at an end (I’ll come back to this).

So research time, what can I do, learn to drive a car, or something else. Is there a way I can be mobile at a much cheaper cost to my purse. Introducing Biker Si!

So I took my CBT within weeks of deciding this would be my course of actions. My reasoning being that bikes are cheaper, cost less to run, less to fuel and less to tax. The CBT I took over 2 days but this was not because of me, this was more to do with the person on the course with me lost the plot when we were out on the roads so we had to keep stopping. Trust me dear reader I made many mistakes, many a time I came to a stop on a cross junction and repeatedly stalled the bike. I even almost killed myself doing practice laps.

Needless to say having never driven in my life and it was all a lot to take in and get used to in such a short time frame. So next was the safety equipment. I researched and read all I could about the best and right gear that I could afford and plumped for leathers.

I think I look pretty good to be fair but fair more importantly I would be safe, well as safe and you can be. Fully lined with all the relevant protections. The helmet, boots and gloves followed. The next thing was to just go and buy the bike. I could only have a 125cc bike because I was on a provisional with only my CBT so far achieved. I decided to wait for the warmer weather of spring to take it further and gain my full licence and more powerful bike.

So with the bike bought (Yamaha YBR125) it came to the fateful day I had to pick it up. I was hoping for some clear skies and decent roads, I knew it would be cold but I couldn’t do much about that. The ex had offered to take me over and come back with me and keep behind me to stop any arsehole drivers killing me. So it began with a trip to the petrol station, £12 filled the tank. Woo Hoo! Of course the heavens open, rain, wind, hail, brimstone, it was like the apocalypse. Maybe I am exaggerating a little but trust me only a little. Apart from being in the outside lane of a dual carriageway doing 30 in a 60mph area and getting in the wrong lane on a few islands I survived the trip. I don’t think I have ever been so nervous about anything.

I was only more nervous about telling my Mum and Dad, my plan was just to ride over and surprise them and a couple of Thursdays ago that is just what I did. I battled through the rush hour traffic and pulled up on their drive in full gear. Knocked on the door and Dad opened, looking at me in full leathers deftly removing my helmet. I moved so he cold see the bike and he just laughed an called out “Marg” and the next thing mother is coming down the stairs saying that ‘it looked like Simon on that bike on the drive’. She saw me and for a second my heart stopped until a massively warm and proud smile crept across her face as she embraced me warmly and told me how proud she was of me. It was a great day.

So now I need to engage the flux capacitor.

Stop….pause….While all this was going on the ex had had a little bit of an episode and his head was pretty fucked. I am going to condense a huge amount of time into a short paragraph because I don’t want to dwell on it anymore. He basically was in turmoil and asked if I would consider trying again, to put back together our relationship. I told him, the new fella had to go, he need therapy and then we needed marriage guidance but I made it clear that I was 50/50 on the outcome and I don’t know if this was the right thing to do. So over the next 6 weeks I stopped and paused my life while we talked, spent time with each other and started to like each other again.

In the end it just wasn’t to be, we are 2 very different people from who we were 10 years earlier and we want very different things out of life. We vowed to stay very good friends, after all we still need to live together until I am in a position to be able to afford to move. Something I have been actively looking at for a few days now.

Go…again. So now I have my bike and freedom, I can live wherever I like now and I am not bound my location or trains etc. I am very proud of seeing if we can get together again, there was a lot of pain and we discussed it over and over again and maybe resolved somethings between us. He is still a good mate but he is no longer the man I will spend my life with. It is a tough thing to deal with but is very helpful with the closure and end that I need to start moving on.

And as if by magic this weekend just gone the universe placed someone on my path that made me feel good about myself. I may only have spent one night in a hotel room and I will never see the person again but I felt good, I felt attractive, I felt wanted and needed. I could lie on someone else’s chest and it didn’t feel like I was betraying anyone, I could be intimate with someone else in every way and not feel bad or awkward. It did me the world of good and felt the universe’s hand guiding me to that encounter. Right place and right time.

Now I start dating when the right opportunity arises. I make it all sound plain sailing and it is easy and I am happy. Far from it. I am making the best life I can with what I have. Do I get down, yes. Do I get lonely, painfully. Do I wish it was different, maybe but not as much. Life is scary and moving in to my own place as a single man is going to be really tough but I will do it and I will thrive.

See you all soon.

Si

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The Mountain

So last week Sunday I climbed a mountain, Snowdon in Wales to be exact but it was so much more than just a mountain.

Don’t get me wrong it was fucking big mountain, 1085 metres of mountain and it was no easy task but I had my gear and my mate Twinny with me and we supported each other.

It starts with a steep tarmac road and that along knackers you out and it’s the first 15 minutes. A path then stretches far into the distance up the valley leading to a steep stone path that passes under the railway line and up and even more steeper and stoney path. This was by far the hardest physical bit but we pushed ourselves and got to the top. Sadly the clouds had come down and we walk across the top to the summit in mist and fog and bloody hell was it cold.

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We reached the summit in 2 hours and 45 minutes, 15 minutes faster than what Google had said so woo hoo!

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Half an hour break up the top to have a bite to eat. I thought better to carb loads so cheese and ham roll and flapjack, Twinny a Feta cheese salad and fruit. It made me laugh all that way and still on his diet.

The biggest challenge for me was walking down the dam thing, hard on the legs the steep bits were really hard on the knees and ankles. This is were the mental challenge comes in, not on the steep bits but the path back across the valley, you can see it reaching all the way back to Llanberis in the distance with it’s beautiful lake. The drive to push aching and painful muscles down that long winding path knowing exactly how far you have to go before you can rest is a killer. If you couldn’t see the path it would be easier as you just would keep going in ignorance and bliss.

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We made it back in 2 hour and 45 monies and I was pleased to be back on the flat and stable road of Llanberis. My muscles took days to recover but my god I climbed a fucking mountain, I did it. I was so very proud of myself for that.

But….

It was so much more than a mountain, I wasn’t coming off that mountain without finishing it, I think I would have died inside if I had come off that mountain without getting to the summit. Failure wasn’t an option. Why? This was the first test of a new life.

Since I split from my ex and he moved on a break neck speed into another relationship I have been left in pain and struggling to find me again. Who am I? What do I like? What is fun for me? I kind of went back to basics and I always remember that when I was a kid, when we would go places on holidays and days out, if me and Dad saw a mountain we would have to go and climb it just to see what was at the top of it. So I thought let’s go and climb Snowdon! It is closet to where I live and a friend wanted to do it as well, perfect so let’s go do it.

I put a lot on to this climb, testing a friendship with Twinny, we had never spent so long together and full 12 hours in the end and we didn’t shut up once. There was also the thought that if I can get my fat ass up and mountain and push myself on and up when I am relatively unfit and inexperienced I can do anything. I know that sounds so stupid and dumb but it has had significance to me. I literally thought if I can do this then I can do anything I put my mind to. I can get my head round having to live alone again, to have to find a new life and a new path to walk.

More mountains? For sure, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis to go.

There are so many more challenges to come, divorce, selling and moving out of our home and starting again from scratch at 40. You might even be saying, ‘you don’t need to climb a mountain to do that you just need to man up’ and you are more than likely right. However, you know what, I did have to prove it, I needed to prove to myself that I can do these things, that nothing can stop me, I have the strength to push myself and I can achieve great things.

The week after the mountain has been crap and I ended up at work crying my eyes out thinking about all the crap that is still yet to come. I could sit here and go on and on about all the stuff in my mind, not wanting to leave my home or change my life, or thinking why can’t I just find another bloke like the ex did and then it will all be OK. Maybe that’s another blog for another day.

Today I wanted to reflect on the achievement of climbing a physical and mental mountain as I haven’t given myself much credit for it. I want to stick two fingers up at my self doubt and all those that doubt me, that hurt me and that have chosen to leave my path whether or good terms and bad. I can do this, I can climb mountains and fucking big ones at that. So I will sit here and finish this blog wth a smile on my face and a massive sense of achievement and promise that when the going gets tough I will picture myself at the summit, in the middle of the wind and rain knowing that I beat it.

Si