There is only one place I can start; I no longer have a girlfriend – I have a fiancé!
Penny’s surprise birthday party (organised over the last three months by a very stressed yours truly) was a great success. Plenty of people dropped out late, there were changes made to the hotel group booking, my family were stressing about the distance (seven miles) and cost of getting to the venue, my dad refused to come, another family member told me she would be there and without reason didn’t come, others were ill, there was maybe only thirty of us there but it was still a success.
She was surprised, (almost) everybody important was there, I asked her dad’s permission to marry his daughter and got up on stage to ask her to marry me to the complete surprise of everybody in attendance; everybody but Spencer (my step-son) that is. He came with me to pick the ring and has kept the secret all week, to my immense pride.
The relief and weight lifted from my shoulders that the birthday, party and proposal is done is immeasurable. Despite Christmas being just 18 days away, with plenty of busy days in between, and the fact I am out of work right now I feel very good. I feel like I have so much more head-space to allocate elsewhere now.
As mentioned I am indeed out of work; I left the job that wasn’t for me but I haven’t had the call from the company I had two interviews with yet. They emailed apologising for the delay and saying that they would be in touch this week but I’m not worried or stressed, maybe I should be a little less relaxed.
Personal pursuits have been on my mind recently. I got my yearly report from Duolingo telling me I was in the top 5% of Spanish learners on the app which was great but even before that I wanted to make more of an effort. I very often leave it late and do the bare minimum to maintain my daily streak (which is now up to just over 400 days) so the plan is to increase the amount I do each day but also do it at a more productive time rather than leave it until quarter to midnight.
A desire of mine since I was a child was to learn multiple languages; namely Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese. This is still something I aim to achieve but while my primary focus is Spanish it is actually sign language that I would like to concentrate on next.
Away from languages I carry a strong urge (again present since childhood) to learn to play a musical instrument or two, at least at a basic level. I say a musical instrument or two – it is exactly two; I had a lot of fun with a drumset given to me in my teenage years but the instruments are actually piano and guitar. I have a cheap keyboard up in my step-sons room and a cheap guitar down in my basement. It is my aim to dedicate some time to these.
I get caught up in writing poems and songs (or a mix of the two) a lot. Sometimes I have a melody or a tune in my head that accompanies these so it would be great to be able to sit at a keyboard or pick up a piano and get these down.
Writing will always be at the forefront for me and making time for that will come first. I’m not really one for new years resolutions but I know that next year I want to spend a lot more time writing.
Recently I’ve massively gone off playing games and even sitting watching television in the evening. While I barely ever play a game I do still watch TV but is more down to being tired and enjoying spending that time with Penny. I haven’t been as engaged in movies or series’ and often find myself making notes on my phone or running through ideas in my head. Moving forward I’ll be dedicating a small amount of time to actually writing rather than just doing what I’m doing currently.
Those pursuits I mentioned are absolutely long term and to many people saying I want to do all these things will illicit a remark that I’m spreading myself too thin and have to narrow it down I look at it more like the thriller writer who has to know how it ends so they know how to get there.
I know that at some point in the future I want a gym fit body, I want several stories written, I want a blog with a decent following, I want to speak several languages (including sign) and play guitar and piano at a basic-to-decent level.
Similarly with professional pursuits I know that at some point I want a number of income streams. Some may be more passive than others. One of those may be a full time job but my primary goal is not have a traditional full time job. I would rather spend those 40-70 hours a week spread across several professional pursuits that accumulatively bring in the money to pay the bills.
For now I want to write a first draft of the second part of ‘The lady at 54’ so I’m going to get on with that. I’m home alone as Penny has gone to visit her sister and has taken our baby girl Rosie while Spencer is at school. Later I will apply for some more jobs and do some housework but for now I am completely free to write and I couldn’t be happier.