Posted by: seehowfarwevecome | June 23, 2016

Enchanting, Sweet, Solitude

For once, I am not on a journey. I sit, simply at home, blogging away with a glass of wine in hand and candles burning in my room. I bought fresh flowers yesterday and in a true sign of age, I am enjoying looking at them. I’m finding my evenings peaceful again, with the recent more manageable work pace and sweetness I can find in solitude.

I have always been someone who gets their energy from other people – I’ve always been that on the go person. It takes real effort for me to slow down, to steady my pace and to find a rhythm that doesn’t exhaust me. I used to crash on weekends, from long work days and social evenings, but recently I’ve found a renewed energy to wake early on weekends, go for a swim, take a jog, and make the most of my days.


July is beckoning me. Two very good friends of mine get married this month, both weekday weddings. I just spoke with one of them, and we laughed and joked and remembered some seven years ago, when her story, with her groom to be, was a little more challenging. “Nothing good gets away” I told Sal tonight, ruefully sharing another friend’s recent words of wisdom with me. Sal laughed at me on the phone, for in her case, that something good did not get away, despite several curveballs coming at them both for the first year or two.

Sal and I were transported back tonight, to seven years ago. She was in a hotel room in Warwick, I was in a hotel room in Leeds, both consultants, living on the road – both sharing a sweetness to our solitude in those quiet evenings alone in a city for work. We would chat most evenings on the phone – sharing our stories, of crushes and of being crushed. Today it’s wonderful to see how that perseverance, and willingness to not let good things get away, brought her to an enchanting today.


My world is enchanting too. “Perhaps” a colleague said to me this week “you should take a trip somewhere”. This may seem silly, as I am constantly travelling, but there’s a real difference between a break and full blown travel expedition – an all encompassing experience. There’s a part of me that wants to do another sabbatical, but I am truly torn for I am genuinely loving my London life and my great work. I know that finding great work isn’t always easy, and I’m not sure I want to give that up.

“What about at Christmas?” my colleague said, and of course perhaps another 3-week Australian style trip would be perfect, but I’ve a thirst to do something sooner. To do something differently. I found myself looking again at Burma this week, and a flashpack tour for November. There’s a part of me on the verge of booking, but another part trying to balance with saving holiday to do something else over the Christmas period.

There are a few other options on the cards too. Selina and I are discussing a trip to India. There’s a possible girl’s trip to Barbados on the cards too. Barcelona has been mentioned. I am struggling to plan it all in with my holiday rations. Gone are my consulting days where I could finish a project, take off for three months, then walk back into another project. I have responsibilities now. I have a permanent job.


It was last year that I went away with a group of strangers to Morocco, and it was one of the very best experiences of my life. Perhaps I want to capture that again and push myself out of my comfort zone further, by disappearing with no one I know, sweet in solitude. Morocco of course rendered me with tremendous payback and insight into solo travelling. New friends, who all share the very same passion for travel and photography. Friends who we can go to the theatre with, pop to dinners with randomly and those who we can while away a few hours and few cocktails any night of the week.

Perhaps I want to recapture that sweet, solitude of travelling alone but with people. Of knowing nobody, but becoming somebody to them. Of having a passion unite strangers. Of feeling the world and its ways.

Maybe I’m thinking more about it all, as today I took the decision to start the process to dissolution my company, HappenCreate Ltd. The end of my consultancy business perhaps marks a real recognition that I’m happy now, in a permanent role, in a place that rewards me with great work. It’s almost four years old, but I haven’t traded for the last 20 months or so. It is definitely time to close it down.


There is always, of course, the prospect to start again. To find new, creative pursuits and business opportunities. I think though, that the next company, if indeed there is one, might be an altogether more creative pursuit. Perhaps artistic endeavours are my way forward. Perhaps there’s a sweeter solitude in painting, writing, making photos. Perhaps that’s great work too. Perhaps that’s just as enchanting.

So as I contemplate options and opportunities, I think of a quote by Warsan Shire that reads, “my alone feels so good, I’ll only have you if you’re sweeter than my solitude.” So perhaps that goes for many things. Perhaps my art, my solo travel experiences, my nights in with candles and flowers, my time swimming mindfully in the pool, perhaps these are all such sweet, moments of solitude. Perhaps it can be sweeter. But perhaps, right now, I don’t need it to be.


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