It has been another one of those blank days so far, blank in the sense that I really can’t seem to connect with anything. My thoughts don’t seem to inspire any topic to write about and there is no real need to do anything; at least I don’t feel the need. Is this the side effect of coming off anti-depressants or do I still need them? I guess I am going to have to wait and see on that one. Whilst writing had become my focus in times of need I find in my disconnected state that I have little enthusiasm to write, any idea seems insignificant and insubstantial which I can’t see a connection to. It seems I have lost my trust in myself, trust that I will discover something whilst writing, and trust that writing is always a good thing to do, particular in times of being in the void.

Whilst being in the house when the others are away gives me freedom, it also disconnects me from the reality of everyday life. It was cold here last night, approaching freezing for the first time since last spring and I really felt it in bed last night; I find it amazing the difference another body in the bed makes. There was no partner to wake me up this morning so I slept on longer than usual but presumably as a consequence of non-interrupted sleep got up earlier. I pushed myself to apply stuff to my psoriasis (more challenging because of the lack of heat) and put two jumpers on over my normal t-shirt. It is one thing to rebel about doing things for myself but quite another when it involves somebody else so without further ado, the dog and I went for a walk. My shorts felt fine in the cold perhaps because the sun was out, but after a few minutes I was glad of the two jumpers and baseball hat. My hands were getting a bit cold which suggest that perhaps I should have added a coat to my layering as well.

There was nothing particularly remarkable about the walk. Bobby met some old friends and made some new; I made an effort to look out for autumnal colours and take pictures of them for my blog. I briefly thought that I could put up the pictures for today’s post but that didn’t feel enough at the time even if now I think it would have been fine. The clouds covered up the sun for the second half of the walk and the cold reminded me that the blackberry season is nearly over since the frosts will wipe out the fruit. I worry about how I will get Bobby to Glasgow so I can go on holiday at the weekend.

The warmth of the house hits me as I open the front door. I don’t know if it is me that is particularly sensitive to heat, or the fact that I wear shorts most of the time but I really enjoy these moments. Most of the time our house feels too cold, its solid walls being expensive to heat due to the lack of insulation, but for a few minutes I can bask in the perceived heat of the hallway even if this is relative to the outside temperature rather than my body’s need. I push myself to wash up the leftovers from last night and empty the dishwasher. I follow this by eating some cereal at the kitchen table rather than scamper to my writing den. I could get my laptop but decide that I should read the paper I bought on Saturday and spot an article I started yesterday night.

The article is an interview with Pep Guardiola who is now manager at Manchester City football club. It is based around Guardiola experiences as first a footballer and then coach with his recently deceased mentor Johan Cruyff whose biography is being launch. I would say that I don’t have any real interest in soccer about from the odd cup final compared to most British guys (it seems) but it is a part of my culture I guess but I seem to have a fascination for reading about footballers from their own perspectives; I wonder what I am trying to understand from them, perhaps I am just nosey. The point that hits me in the article is that Guardiola believes that great football managers are not measured on the success at winning championships but on the influence they have on their players and the legacy that gives to the next generation; Cruyff’s legacy was “wow, outstanding, amazing, huge” according to Guardiola.

The article reminds me of something I read on the Quora website in answer to the question “What is the best thing a teacher ever said to you”. At this point I go to the aforementioned website and try to find the answer I read before but I can’t find it and instead spend I don’t know how long reading other inspiring tales of how teachers influenced their students. I wonder again as I did after reading Guardiola’s praise of his mentor Cruyff whether I have influenced the next generation? There are my children of course, so I can’t help but have influenced somebody, hopefully in a positive way.

What I find interesting is that there is all this wonderful knowledge out there but few people access it. I have had a desire to record the experiences of the previous generation to mine because I believe everybody’s life has something important to tell us. It seems like an overwhelming thing to try but something like Quora gives me the inspiration to try. It feels really important to me for the next generation not to make the same mistakes as my generation did but I suspect that is more about my children not having to under the pain I had to. The reality though is that we need to make mistakes to learn, or rather I need to make mistakes to learn (though that isn’t something that sits comfortably with me) because that seems to be part of the human condition, experiential learning is just what we do.

I guess I need to see what life is like without the anti-depressants again in order to understand this point in my life. If I am making a mistake then I will learn from it; lifelong learning isn’t without risks.

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