Monday, 16 May 2011

Monday Morning Blues

Mondays were always difficult days for me. I'd set off from Skegness on Friday around 6pm and start the 2 hour drive to Barnsley to pick my workmate up. I'd already be tired from a hard week working the markets and venturing to Manchester a couple of times on buying trips. I'd pick up Johnny,then start the 2 hour plus drive down the M1 and M69 to Wellsbourne Market,just south of Coventry. We'd call at the motorway services and stock up on items needed to stay awake- cigarettes and Red Bull normally. Invariably Johnny would be asleep within half an hour of leaving the services, despite his Bonkers cds still being played at full volume. We'd reach the market just before midnight and try and sleep. The back of the van was full, leaving only the cab. Johnny stretched over the passenger seats,while I slept upright behind the steering wheel.

We'd be up at 4a.m, setting the stall up,then work a full day. By the time we'd packed away for the day it'd be between 6 and 7p.m. We,d begin the drive back up north to a patch of wasteground just outside the field where Thorsby sunday market was held,have something to eat,sometimes a beer, then try to sleep again. At the stroke of 4 a.m we'd be up again for another days work. After dropping Johnny off I'd get home for around 9 p.m , stopping at the shop to get a bottle of wine. I looked forward to Sunday nights. Friday and Saturday nights out were never on the radar, so Sunday was my night. I'd make sure I never went to bed without drinking the whole bottle, despite the normal protests from my wife and despite,invariably waking up in the early hours alone on the sofa, with just the TV for company.

Mondays became a day of melancholic moods. Those close to me knew to keep their distance. It was the day when problems seemed larger than before, and although I never worked on Mondays, I rarely enjoyed my one day off.

Things have greatly changed since then. I have an enviable life of leisure now compared to those times. Mondays normally fall into the pattern of just another day. However twice this past month there has been news which has contributed to a revisit of the ill forgotten Monday Blues.

In the age of social networking, a quick morning glance at twitter is normally enough to ascertain what has been happening in the world overnight. Three weeks today I awoke to be greeted by the news of the death of Osama Bin Laden. After spending a few minutes reading messages I was overcome with a sadness that I just couldn't shake. It's not that I was sad over in murder of Bin Laden especially, but the way his death was being glorified. Everyone has beliefs and everyone has the power within to exercise how to see their beliefs are implemented. I always hold dear the hope that change can occur through peace and non violence. Bin Laden choose,in my view, the wrong path. But he was not alone. The major governments in the world,with their involvements over the last few years in Afganistan and Iraq,were equally wrong. The fact that a persons murder could ever be celibrated is a sad indictment of human nature. For the whole day I felt sad.

I awoke this morning in a relatively good mood, but on checking twitter, again saw some sad news which,again filled me with sadness. Sammy Wanjuri, the 2008 olympic marathon champion had been found dead at his home in the Rift valley, Kenya after apparently jumping from his own balcony. I witnessed Sammy at first hand as he won The London Marathon in 2009. That year he won the race in a fraction over 2 hrs 5 mins, and I remember reading a race report in AW where he had berated his pace makers at the half way point of the race to go faster,even though they were already on world record pace. Sammy ran two of the classic marathons in history,firstly overcoming the heat of Bejing in 2008,then winning an epic man on man battle at Chicago in 2010. Running provided him with the financial riches only dreamt of sportsman, but ,as is often the case, wealth, it seems, did little to affect affairs of the heart. There had been reports of domestic conflict between Sammy and his spouse, and early reports would seem to point to this conflict having a part to play in his death.

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