You might call me an angry young man who never [wanted to] grow up as the decades accelerated past him. Still living in the fading memories of his endless small triumphs where others seemed to do absolutely nothing at all. How do people survive on so little personal stimulus? Where the results of a football match, watching a vacuous soap and washing the car on Sunday define their entire lives.
Any interest in football was quashed as a child when I discovered that mercenaries were allowed to play for the local tribe. I haven't spent more than a grudging few seconds in over a half century watching the UK's "national sport" for the redistribution of wealth. Robber barons stealing from babies in their prams doesn't even begin to describe the obscenity of ticket pricing and commercialization of this week's kit. Just be careful you don't get run over by your drunken hero's Lambo or Bentley as you queue in the rain!
I readily admit that I write my rants largely for my own amusement. Seriously though, I really do find them quite funny. Whether they are/were remotely as witty as I thought them myself I have absolutely no means of knowing. The numbers of my followers has remained fairly stable over time and the number of visitors largely unchanged. What brings any of you here, so regularly, still remains a complete mystery to me.
The 'Head Gardener' expresses occasional worries as to my general whereabouts in case she needs to send the police, search dogs out in a hurry. Can you just see the headlines? "70 year-old tricycling clown found safe but wandering in circles in the woods." [They always exaggerate age to make the new story more gripping.]
There are certain views on my walks which always defy becoming mundane. Never the same from one day to the next, I often stop to simply stand and stare in admiration. The curves of the low, mounded fields, the arrangement of that corner of the retreating forest and the lines of the crops are easily enough for me in the right combination. They need no embellishment to add fleeting "interest". It would be fascinating to make one of those stop motion videos over an entire year from the same viewpoint. Though few would bother to watch it if I posted it on YouTube. Not enough 'instant gratification' for most tastes and where, the hell, are the kittens?!!?
Once, my tricycle rides were personally compulsory and I used and abused every means at my disposal to maintain their frequency. [Rather than take the car.] Retirement means I no longer have that urgent drive to be somewhere else and still be back in time for a very late lunch. No hardened psychopath at the local job center needs to bully me into riding yet further on pain of threatened poverty and saddle soreness. Somebody should have explained to him that the multinational sold all our jobs [and decades of technological development] to China. A series of promising young hit men would exchange a given number of dismissals for a new Audi. I used to grin every time I entered the factory because I felt a small part of something vitally important in combating global climate change and improving billions of real people's lives. But the billionaire owners had far more important goals. Like having another ought and several more kilos to add to their "bottom line."
So I was sent forth as a 63 year-old, walking wounded, to seek employment in a grossly unfair world of factory closures as production jobs were/are bulk exported to Asia and even Eastern Europe. My daily rides were journeys into my own little world of economic depression and weed-infested industrial estates. Sometimes peopled by lonely, broken men. Still fiddling around the edges of their former place of business. My daily doses of Denmark held only badly faded house sale signs, rows of blind shop windows in every village high street and no hope in hell of a job offer. Certainly not for an elderly clown on a tricycle when literally hundreds would apply for any formal recruitment notice. Why choose me? When I was the one closest to retirement and who spoke only in Danglish-gibberish. Rather than the local, agricultural, factory fodder, Fynsk-Danish. [Fyn is the island I live on now. The middle blob of the three landmasses of tiny Denmark. Fynsk is Danish for things form Fyn.]
Time for today's walk under continuing grey skies. Where I know I shall be dodging the same psychopathically selfish, homicidal, speeding commuters as yesterday. Before suddenly being allowed to immerse myself in the refreshing silence and emptiness of the farm tracks and rural lanes. Where the focus is shared equally between the nearby and the distant. Where I can stop completely at will without fear of being rear-ended. My separate, tricycling world, is crowded with mobile phone abusers behind the wheel of their "pride and joy" or 7-axle continental behemoths. Spotting a driver without a handheld device is like spotting Robins. They are extremely rare, quiet and more often seen as road kill.
Once away from the busy road, only the sound of my boots intrude in a world of nature and sticky mud. Where I have no need to maintain a constant eye out for debris and potholes over a yard wide strip, stretching out to an infinity of damaged asphalt. Where I have no need to keep a third eye open for dangerously inadequate or obviously drunken drivers. Where the unexpected sound of tyre roar means I glance down instinctively at my [absent] rear view mirror. Only to feel I have lost a fifth and vital limb to fend off the inevitable brush with potential, mortal danger.