Written Friday 24th November
Decided to head home to the country to see my folks and take part in the Lytham Yacht Club annual dinner. It's a pretty traditional affair - dinner jackets, speeches, port and the like. It's pretty crusty too. Junior members are those under 30 and the president of the club is in his 90's. As I said - traditional! The funny thing is not one of the (all-male) members actually owns a boat/yacht/ship - it's purely social.
Another reason for coming up to the dinner is to take a break from the big smoke. I've been in London for a several years now, working for a capital management company and then for a financial betting company. A radical change in life is due. So yesterday the formal resignation went in and it became time to start shaping the future of the boy Narg.
Today I find myself on a Virgin train piling through central England heading from Euston to Preston listening to Nina Simone's greatest hits flowing through the headphones from my iPod with the same subtle, blended, sinuous feel of looking out of the window watching the scenery roll past. It truly does feel like the beginning of an adventure - one that potentially could shape life for many years to come.
I've decided to move out to Chamonix - the town that sits in the valley at the bottom of Mont Blanc in France. It's a mecca for skiiers and snowboarders due to the high, steep peaks, as well as being one of the best places in Europe to go climbing for the same reason. Timings look like to move out there mid-January after spending a month in New Zealand over christmas and new year. The more cynical out there will think this is purely a ruse to go out and play in the snow for a few months, but in fact it's going to provide the oppertunity to finish writing a piece of software that's been rolling around my mind for some time now. Also there's a particularly talented friend out there who runs the Chamonix valley website - chamonix-valley.com - and we've talked a bit working on a few bits on that together in a trade for using his offices to work from.
There's a heightened sense of freedom and happiness now that's not been felt for far too long. It's too easy to get bogged down in monotony and the negative aspect of life and that's debilitating. There's too much oppertunity to make your life wholely fulfilling and happy out there. The big adventure of life is an exciting miracle of a challenge and I've always felt that if you feel like life is passing by and you aren't living to the apex of the fun, happiness, joy and peace you can have then it's time for a change. Life is beautiful - even the chapters that are difficult or you don't like provide the lows for the highs to be high. Once again, it's been easy to wake up in the morning and jump up and down on the bed with excitement about what the day will bring, the utter joy of knowing that this one day is unique and there will never be the chance to live it again. That for me is the most special feeling, to share that with someone else - especially your partner and children - has to be the great gift of life.
There is an element of sadness leaving work - there is a plethora of amazing, incredible people there. Especially one guy who stuck up for me when times were hard and I just hope one day that he'll see the loyalty and honesty he showed me was reciprocated at every oppertunity that arose - he deserved it and much more. For that and his ability to teach and share knowledge selflessly, I thank him. I wish him and the other guys all the very best. Before leaving it also feels fully right to make peace with the very few people who there was any sort of friction with. It just feels correct in order to look back at this chapter in life with a whole heart full of happiness at having those people around as influential characters.
So the main plan of action now is to move to Chamonix and:
1) Write an exciting, challenging, clever, sellable piece of software (then sell it!).
2) Settle into doing two things that I love unconditionally - programming and snowboarding.
3) Fall in love again. OK now this isn't quite so urgent, but it's definately part of the main life plan thingy so it's included here.
Chamonix valley website