So, we are at the point where I have left my job and I am starting my big adventure as a Locksmith. But lets rewind a bit as I haven’t really told you anything about myself yet! Trust me its not that exciting but if we are going to be friends then you should really know a little about me. I was born in Carlisle and lived in a small village just past Wigton called Bolton Low Houses. I loved it. I had endless fields to roam in, farms to visit and spend time on, complete freedom apart from a time to come home and was surrounded by animals and nature all day every day. This may have had something to do with my lifelong love of all things furry! The only time I really left the village was to spend time with my beloved Grandparents in Carlisle. They truly were the love of my life, to say that I adored my Granda was an understatement and I sadly lost him when I was 21. I will talk about my Grandparents in a future post, especially the legend that is “Grandma”.
I was 11 when I was moved to Washington in the North East of England. I hated it! I cannot express that enough. I had gone from a village where there were about 17 kids in the tiny school to a town where there was 30+ kids in a class. I was immediately singled out as being different, I was used to open country side and fresh air and I now had concrete, litter, graffiti and bullies. This is in no way a pop at Washington, I am sure most towns and cities all over the world have the same problems. I found it really difficult to adjust to my new surroundings and I was constantly planning my escape, I was unhappy and there are no words to describe how much I missed my Grandma and Granda. Any hoo, I had no choice, I had to just suck it up and get on with it. I always had the holidays in Carlisle to look forward to. These were literally the highlight of my life. The following photo was taken during one of those holidays at Grizedale with the wild ponies. I was about 13 at the time and it may become evident from this photo why I was bullied at school!
Wellies! I fucking love my wellies, I still do, in fact this is still my favourite clothing combo – jeans (not shorts anymore), T Shirt and wellies. I can still be found today mooching around my allotment – in my wellies! Living in a village wellies were really the only footwear you needed. It was perfectly acceptable to go to school in wellies, the doctors, the pub, parties, any where really. Wellies in Washington are not so popular, I sharp found this out and I became the butt of many jokes, called names and taunted.
Anyway, I survived my school years, and according to my Facebook account I made 100’s of friends – I can’t remember actually interacting with a lot of these people but hey ho! My school days were so enjoyable I left at the first opportunity, I literally ran out on a Friday and started a YTS (youth training scheme – for any young uns reading this) on the Monday. Now I am not going to bore you with the next 24 years of my working life, all I will say is its been varied. I have done everything from working in a bread factory to a pub bouncer. Its weird when I think back to some of the jobs that I have had that I was bullied at school and painfully shy, my first job was in a marble factory where I was the only girl, I wouldn’t go in to the bait room at the same time as the guys so I would time my dinner break 10 minutes before theirs so I could make a cuppa and my lunch without having to speak to any of them. Clearly this didn’t last long and I can honestly say that job was probably the best thing to ever happen to me, I stayed there 6 years and ended up buying a house with one of the guys! Yeah, my shyness didn’t last that long!
Fast forward 24 years and here I am working as a locksmith for myself. I have no regrets in life but I accept that some of my life choices have been shit and if I could go back 20 years this is the note I would write to myself:
Alex, you do not know what the future holds, you will have good times and bad. You will fall in love and out of love, you will have your heart broken several times but you will be fine. You have your dream and you will achieve this much quicker if you stop wasting money on crap – STOP IT, oh and stop smoking as well. Save your pennies and your dreams will become a reality, if not you will end up at 40 still trying to get there. You know who your true friends are, embrace new friendships but be careful of those who have an ulterior motive. Apply for an allotment sooner, it really is the greatest thing. Grandma will need you as she gets older, this is going to be a very stressful time, there is not a lot you can do about it, it all works out in the end though, you just have to stay strong during this period. Write more, study more and save more. You can do this. Love Alex xx
P.S Definitely watch The Walking Dead, its brilliant. “
I wonder if I had received that letter how much notice I would have taken of it? Probably not a lot, as previously mentioned I do like to make things hard for myself.
Till next time xx