Guest Blog – The Last 5 Years by New Author Online

Kevin Morris has been hosted here many times over the past 2 years and I have been honoured with space on his blog as well. While you can read his other guest posts here, you should direct your attention to an Anthology to raise money for Guidedogs where you can find many short stories, including one of my own (don’t forget to donate!). Show some love!

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Thank you to Anju for inviting me to write about the last five years of my life. Anyone who is still awake at the end of this post deserves a medal so, without further prevarication here goes!

The past five years have been extremely hectic. Holding down a full-time job, maintaining a blog, writing and publishing books have all kept me very busy.

I began writing in 2011-2012. To begin with I wrote purely for the pleasure of the thing. I had no idea that one day my books would grace the virtual shelves of those kind enough to download them. I am still in some senses a Luddite. Although all my books exist purely in electronic form there is, for me nothing like the feel of a beautifully produced book (especially of the hardback variety) and my dream is for my work to appear in traditional printed form, enclosed between the covers of a hard or paperback book. I am currently revising my collection of poetry and prose, “Dalliance” and hope that in addition to the eBook a good old fashioned paper edition will also be available for my readers to enjoy.

My first collection of short stories entitled “The First Time” first appeared on my blog and, in 2013 as an ebook. I continue to be moved by the generosity of fellow WordPress bloggers. There support has helped inspire me to keep writing. Thank you to everyone who has hosted me or in any way promoted my writing, I really do appreciate all your help!

The past 5 years saw the tragic death of my previous guide dog, Drew in March 2011. It was a normal day. I went into the office as usual and stopped off for a pint in my favourite local on the way home. Drew seemed fine however, during the night she began to pass blood and despite being rushed to the vet she sadly died due to a heart attack brought on by blood loss.

Following Drew’s death I was touched by the kind words of fellow bloggers, particularly by those who had also lost a much loved animal. To me Drew was much more than a guide dog. She was a close friend who helped me on a daily basis to live independently. I now have a lovely brindle lab/retriever called Trigger who I love to bits. No dog can ever substitute for a former much loved companion. My bond with Trigger is extremely close but no dog can replace a dearly departed friend. Each dog is special and possesses his or her own unique personality.

Thank you again to Anju for allowing me to lull you all to sleep with my ramblings. Sorry I mean to entertain you all with my pearls of wisdom!

Guest Blog – 5 years in 500 words!

I haven’t hosted Adam here before, but he is THE BOY that I keep talking about. Show him some love. 

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Time stretches back in the form of memories, highlights, edited collections of things we choose to retain. If you had just 500 words to talk about about the last 5 years what would you choose to include, what would you omit, what would you not even be able to recall? How do we select what memories are worthy?

I’d remember first and foremost meeting you, I’d recall with film like quality the first time our eyes met, our first conversation about the beer you were drinking. I’d remember shutting ourselves in as a storm raged outside, the tranquility we’d feel in shutting the world out. I’d remember following Stephen down remote coastal paths, as if on a voyage of discovery. I’d remember our first place together and how hard it was to get here to this point, sitting here now thinking of the last 5 years. I’d remember falling in love.

If I had to pick one unifying factor that encapsulated the last five years it would be travel and expanding horizons. When I went to Cyprus in 2010 I hadn’t been abroad for 10 years, since then I have been on a 3,000 mile European road trip that took in 9 countries, visited my sister when she worked in Germany, been to Spain twice, to Slovakia for my brothers stag do, spent a week in Bangkok and visited India twice before eventually relocating here in 2014. I always thought I had an adventurous spirit buried inside me that wanted to get out and see the world, and now here I am living in India, 5 years ago i’d have found that impossible to imagine.

My family has changed a lot over the last 5 years. The older generation, who were the rocks for so long have found themselves more reliant on the support of the young as time inevitably began to take its toll. In 2011 my Granddad died, I don’t use the words lightly but he was a great man, constantly supportive, always kind, always putting himself second to our needs. I draw inspiration from his memory as I try to make my way in what can sometimes be a vastly confusing world.

In July 2014 my younger brother got married. I think i’ll look back on the memories of that time as some of my fondest. Everyone important to me in one place, wonderful weather and true happiness, something that shouldn’t be underestimated in life, something that can be all too fleeting.

I’d look back to the 2010 version of me and tell him not to give up, that there are new experiences and unimaginable things ahead, that what perhaps seemed like a dreary existence wasn’t going to last forever. I’ve never been one for 5 year plans or planning the minutiae of my life, sometimes I have thought it has been to my detriment. But as I look back across the last 5 years i’m glad I just allowed things to happen, because allowing things to happen can take you to places you never imagined.