Been meaning to post this for ages.

Our nephew recently spent 6 months at sea, returning home a couple of months ago. He joined the Merchant Navy student programme last year and this was his first time away (I’m sure there is a proper navy term for that mind you…). He spent most of his time shuttling between the UK, the north-east coast of Africa and Brazil, criss-crossing the Atlantic many times. We’re all very proud of him, and very happy that he is loving every minute of it, well almost…

And you know what else I am? Jealous. Very jealous.

I feel bad even admitting it, to be honest, but it’s true. I told him as much and he nodded along politely as, no doubt, I’m not the only person who’ll have said this to him.

He has seen things I will likely never see, been places I’ll likely never be, and has caused me to ponder my own life. Do I want to spend it sat behind a desk? I’ve got another 30 years or so before I retire, and that presumes I’ll retire early, but I can honestly say the thought of sitting at a computer for all that time fills me with dread. There is so much more to life than this.

And so the pendulum swings again. A few months ago I was revved up, career-focussed, and planning on an MA of all things! What folly. Yet, as I sit here looking out over back garden as the rain drizzles down, I find myself daydreaming and plotting. What WOULD I do, what COULD I do?

As ever, reality nags at the back of my head. Bills to pay, the lifestyle we enjoy isn’t the cheapest, and being constantly stretched is now a way of life. We have debt, like most, but it’s controlled and lowering all the time. One distant day we’ll have none but the mortgage, and the car probably, and then what? Is that the time to pursue something new?

But what? I have many skills, I know my capabilities, and I know I’m smart enough to pick up most things. But that only broadens the scope.

I could write for a living perhaps? Go freelance, and pick and choose my jobs to fit round other activites, new hobbies, or perhaps new studies for a new direction.

But that still leaves the what.

And then, after some time, I realise that I’m actually quite happy with my life and my job. Whilst I would love to be in a position to travel more, things aren’t all that bad, and I still have time on my side.

Count your blessings and all that.

But don’t stop dreaming…