It’s All To Play For

Every now and then you accidentally take a step back and evaluate your life. Where it’s been, where it is now, where it’s going next. It would be almost impossible not to acknowledge New Years as a time when we all collectively let out a the traditional, ‘fuck!’.

No matter how much you’ve done or the things you have achieved it all gets slightly alarming when we make a huge deal that another year is drawing to close. Suddenly everything is categorized. No longer do you simply think back to recent or distant adventures, but to the months in which you did them. No more simple enjoyment in the incredible things you did, the focus shifts to how long ago you did them, and the crushing questions of how you didn’t do a million times more. The question of why last new year you started jogging, yet you’ve let life slide through your fingers and settled for being less than king of the universe. Or maybe you’re one of the sensible people who just gets black out drunk instead of trying to figure life out simply because one digit did a change.

It may just be me, but for a brief time on New Years, I still get those feelings of doom. Probably because I’m usually so bad at time keeping that nothing shy of an entire year ending will make me realize any time has passed at all. It’s the reason this last year has been such a strange one. On no other New Year have I felt like I’ve done so much yet achieved so little.

Looking back on blogs from this past year I’ve been on some pretty amazing adventures with some pretty amazing friends. Both impressive and confusing when I realise most things worth noting happened before last summer. With a start like that I should surely be king of the universe by now.

There has been a serious shortage of these blogs recently, partly due to the fact that a certain someone named Steve who shall remain nameless decided to break his ankle. I think the opportunity to blog about that magical night has passed but long story short if he had just listened to me and gone surfing he wouldn’t have broken his phallus.

On top of broken phalli there’s work. I wouldn’t mention it if it weren’t for new years, but looking back I fear I spent too much time working on my job when I should have been working on my life. But of course jobs are kind of inevitable and we have to deal with them. like a mad case of the fire sharts after eating left over curries. And just like that I found a new years resolution.

That last paragraph contained Volaticus’ 100th cliché.

So over summer I dedicate a disproportionate amount of my life to my job like a proper grown up. Why in the name of Bruce Forsyth’s wondrous chin did I make a mistake like that? Cautionary tale kids, jobs are important, but you don’t ever want to look back and wonder if you sacrificed too much of your life making other peoples better.

So this year took a bit of a slide, and in a last ditch attempt to finish it well we decided the traditional New Years adventure would have to be something great, cautiously aware that the bar set the previous year was climbing a mountain. Clearly this wasn’t going to happen again due to Steve’s broken kankle and the great papoose shortage of 2015 leaving us with no way to carry him up a mountain.

As the end of the year grew closer and our long running inability to plan anything raised it’s face, we settled into the idea of something much more relaxed. That’s to say that after lots of me moaning we headed down to west wittering to make the most of the crisp surf being thrown about by the arrival of storm Frank.

There were tense moments as Rhys and I began mexican standoffing as to whether or not we’d get into wet suits. Tenser moments as we wound Steve up by possibly not doing something he desperately wanted to do. Now we teeter on an intense moment as we tried to change into a wet suit in the back of a rover 200 without flashing our goose eggs to the entire car park. We bravely fought the ferocious weather. Weather that would no doubt claim the footing of many a wheely bin the length and breath of the country. All this to surf for about fifteen minutes before realizing how bloody cold it is jumping in the sea in the heart of winter.

Still, fifteen minutes is better than none. Those fifteen minutes of riding the ice cold waves had been a reminder of what we’d lost sight of for the second half of last year. It’s good to put effort in. But life is never perfect when you try too hard. It’s a dangerous game putting all your goose eggs in one basket, more dangerous is to leave them in someone else’s basket. I’ve learnt a lot this year. It gets cold. It gets windy. The seas get rough. But you never leave the water. You ride the waves until you get what you came here for. It’s a lesson I learnt a long time ago. It just takes a little reminder every now and then.

As hard as it was to see Steve break himself, there might be some good to come of it. A new years glimpse of what we missed this year is going to leave a determination to do more building up inside all of us. Some point in 2016, our friend will literally get back on his feet. Then that pent up determination is going to explode. I don’t think we could stop it if we tried. But I think we’ll channel it well.

Stay in the waves. You never know when the big ones going to come out of no-where.

Until the adventures come pouring back out,



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