So it's been a while since I've written. Why? Well, stuff, life has happened, a lot of life and lots of things to deal with and that had been dwelling in the darker recesses of my foetid mind. One thing has been clear, an incredible amount has happened in the last twelve months. I've lost two close friends, one at the beginning of the twelve months, the other at the end. I didn't get to the former's funeral as I was excluded and this was a difficult ball of emotions to deal with, the other though will be the day after my eighth day here... I will probably not be able to make it and this is in itself causing a new ball of emotions. In a similar vein I lost both my father and mother-in-law, the former before I disappeared off to New York a year ago tomorrow, the latter some time later. In both cases it was clear I would not be welcome at the funerals.
I can't begin to tell you how much this has hurt.
But it's also been a positive year. A year to meet new friends, a year of new experiences. A year when I turned fifty and didn't mind. Even a year where I met up with the travelling one for an extended stay on the Island of Šipan. Most importantly a year where I met somebody so special that it's scary. In a good way.
Yet at the end of this year is now. This moment. I'm sitting in a hospital bed having been prodded and checked and measured wondering whether I will get to sleep this evening and if they will mind that I'm about to throw the ticking clock out of the window.
Incredibly I'm very calm. Last night when I arrived in Brighton I lay on a bed, pulled myself in to a foetal position and literally didn't move for best part of three hours. I tried to explain it after and the only point of reference I had was it reminded me of the hours after I came fairly close the end many years ago in a boating incident. I was, quite simply, in shock. After years if waiting I was finally almost there. And yet now I'm actually in my hospital room I'm, well, fine actually.
I really don't know what will happen next, what adventures, what new experiences. When asked all I can do is shrug and explain that I'm having difficulty imaging anything beyond Halloween 2017.
But you know what? When I emerge from here on the eighth day... Bring. It. On.
But in the meantime, in the words of T. S. Eliot...
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.