So much can change in a year. In less than twelve months I have encountered several incarnations; from final year university student working on his dissertation in Kingston, to shop worker for less than minimum wage in Hull, to professional travel specialist on good money and getting to travel the world, while spending my weeks working away in a casual office environment in Sussex. And from non-smoking, gym addicted cyclist to chain smoking heavy drinker to serious dieter. Even my eyewear has changed multiple times in 2011.
The last time it was dark by 1730 on a Sunday afternoon I was living with Chloe in a large old Victorian flat in KT1. Now I am sitting here at my Dad's house in my hometown with the 'King's Speech' mumbling away in the background and I have to say, I think without the Hull episode earlier this summer, there is no way that I would have been content with sitting here right now. So yes, 2011 has been quite a roller-coaster of a year so far, but has certainly lead to me knowing myself better than ever. I understand better what drives me and makes me happy, what saddens and upsets me, where I like to be, who I like to be around, how much of myself to present in different situations and when people and places are and are not worth my time.
Now with graduation looming just around the corner, I can mark this period with a suitable and formal celebratory ending and beginning. Farewell to my life as an uneducated and troubled youngster and hello to James, an adult who knows exactly who he is and hasn't done too badly for himself at all.
Sunday, 30 October 2011
Tuesday, 18 October 2011
I feel utterly deflated.
I started my new job as a Travel Consultant about a month ago and I am happy to report that it is going very well. The people I work with are great, the office and hours are cool, the work is interesting and I am learning more everyday. So all in all- horah!
Work is good and I feel so completely at home and comfortable being based back in East Grinstead, so what is puncturing me and making the air seep out? Could it be that I’ve been not been writing so much or going to the gym as much as I used to?
I am finding myself longing to visit Knights Park Student Union all the time. I am really missing the student lifestyle I had in Kingston- even down to my routine of cycling everywhere and hitting the gym regularly. It’s just not as easy to do it here. I miss my bike more than anything I think. Perhaps I should invest in a new one when I get paid next week.
The people around me in EG are brilliant, but naturally I miss all of the good friends I made in Kingston. The trouble is, only a few of them are left there now. Most people have had to go back home after Uni or moved away from Kingston so popping back (which is only an hour away) can actually leave you feeling more hollow than before. I genuinely miss my lectures and having fascinating and difficult literature to read and write about, as well as the spontaneous afternoons and evenings of drinking cocktails.
Perhaps I’m just struggling with change- although usually I pride myself on loving and even needing change. Like I said to Ben the other day though- if I was offered a temporary job abroad now, I would probably turn it down. I think I am longing to settle down and get some sort of routine back. Thankfully, I can see that in my not so distant future.
Hopefully Graduation on 1st November will satisfy my student lifestyle longing.
Bring it on.
by James Christopher Sheppard
With rushing and frantically trying to create
that would stand up and bow to the admirers and students
and band wagon jumpers,
it can reach the point of saturation
of having to stop through fear of burning out
or more realistically of failing to create
anything worth creating
for any eye to take the effort to
engage with brain and remember.
So I did look around
and noticed the sky
but not before realising I was stumbling off the trail,
off of the rubble and down a ditch
where trees stood tall and no man could prevail.
I took it all in,
the warnings and signs and noticed
that it couldn’t matter
if I created something worth creating
for eyes and brains to engage or not,
so long as I saw the sky and wasn’t afraid to look up
and risk falling down the ditch
filled with nameless men before me
that saw the sky just I have.