Well, when you put it like that, it’s a lot of years and, for the first time in my life, I actually feel my age.

Strange that when I hit the big 4-0, I still felt like I was in my mid-twenties, although, I was a lot fitter back then. In July that year I’d had a hernia op and, when they took my resting heart-rate prior to the op, my pulse was at 24bpm. 24RP-fucking-M!? That’s less than that for a supremely fit athlete at the top of their game! They took three readings as they couldn’t believe what they were seeing!!

” . . . give me Novocaine . . . “ My neck is in constant pain and, for the last two weeks, I’ve had a bit of a bad back, the legacy of driving buses with uncomfortable driving seats and jerky, jolty automatic gearboxes. The level of pain varies with the length of time I am sat down. It’s strange that I never have any pain when walking, jogging, running or cycling; I just don’t!

” . . . a job that kills you, bruises that won’t heal . . . “ 2011 looked like being my annus horiblis:  This year alone I was off work for two weeks from my God-awful previous job in January. Then, in April, although I didn’t take any time off sick, my back was in so much pain that I had to walk with a stick, barely able to move my left foot forward, and had to have three sessions with the Osteopath. Both my Doctor and the Osteopath advised me to change my job as I could become crippled. Stupidly, I soldiered on in the job, against their advice.

I was then sacked in June; reinstated in July after second appeal; by this time I felt like I was fifty-three, nevermind forty-three! I was sacked again in August, which was upheld at the farcical first appeal (no surprises), after which I informed Kev, the union rep, that I had not intention of going to second appeal as I’d had enough. I have wallowed in that quagmire for far too long.

Despite all that, and a couple of months after finishing at shitsville, I feel that I have a new lease of life; I am at my most positive and happiest for about ten years; I have the best workmates I’ve ever had (apologies to previous workmates); I am weighing-up my options with interest. I have always had  a “can-do” kind of persona but, now, I can definitely say that I have a Positive Mental Attitude (PMA), too. Anything is possible.

Another year will see my 45th birthday; I wonder where it will see me and if I will be feeling my age. Good times, people and places, I have a feeling. . .

” . . . happiness, happiness, the only thing that I possess . . . “