Quo Vadimus

Like all good stories this one is about a girl. And like too many of them the road has highs and lows and may not end with a ‘happy ever after’. But life is bigger, more fantastic and holds more possibilities than any one girl, so although I tell this story now, who knows what the future will hold. To some this posting may seem a little too personal, but I have never had a problem telling people about myself (I like to think it is the one subject that I can talk on with some authority) and who knows, this process may be cathartic.

Anyone who reads this blog regularly will have noticed a fantastically optimistic posting towards the end of 2008 and a distinct lack of anything new for much of January 2009. Now we find ourselves in February and I am back posting. Guess what? All three things were somewhat related as the optimism in the post resulted in the possibility of a relationship, only for it to be crushed as January turned to February.

The story of how we met is a good one: a chance meeting on a plane and a joyous grasp of life. It evolved into fairly deep conversations and a total wonder as to whether or not this could possibly be really happening. At the time I was assured that this sort of thing did happen, I guess with hindsight that the chance meeting on a plane and disappearing off into the sunset is a dream that struggles to stand up the harsh test of reality. I told a number of people about the girl & how we met and pretty much unanimously they advised to be slow, cautious or guarded. But I am afraid that it is not in my nature to hold back; I fall deep and hard, full in the knowledge that it most likely will end badly, but the risk in my approach to grasp life in its entirety is that I experience the lows to go along with the fantastic highs. It is the price I pay for being so optimistic, so open and quite possibly being somewhat naive.

Even as we embarked on the journey it was obvious to see the many, significant challenges ahead: her personal situation, our geographical location and our entirely different professional lives. But she seemed to be happy to overcome the travel & logistics, the difference in professional lives just meant that there was a whole new world to learn about and the personal situation was going to become clearer as time went by.

And I guess that the personal situation did indeed become clearer. Unfortunately for me the clarification to the picture involved the removal of me from it. So, as I posted once before, I find myself contemplating diving into the heady world of dating and who knows what adventures will come of it. Of course there is a possibility to short cut this somewhat terrifying prospect: If you are a single woman or know of any single women who are open to something new, please feel free to get in touch. Maybe 2009 will be as great as the portents held; and wishing for a whole year of wonderful things happening is naive in the extreme. So I look forward to what the future holds; we live in interesting times and although I wouldn’t wish this feeling on anyone I recognise it is a necessary component of life.

In fact, to put a positive spin on things, this is an opportunity to fully implement one of my philosophies of life. The motto is simply “Quo Vadimus” which I am reliably informed translates as “Where do we go from here?”. I am entirely unable to claim any originality in the motto- I first came across it in an episode of a truly wonderful TV show called SportsNight. In the episode a stranger explains that although he is a “phenomenally successful man” he has failed much more than he has succeeded. And each time he fails he gathers all the people who are important to him and asks the question “Where are we going?”. The point being that it is not possible to change the past, all we can do is work out how to move forward with the all the information available to us now. And by looking forward the situation gets better.

I do not presuppose myself to be anything like phenomenally successful, in fact a few years ago I realised that by many measures one is a nicer person if the drive to succeed is curtailed. Of course, given the evidence presented in the story about the girl then maybe I should just stick to trying to be successful because it sure does appear as though I am not succeeding with women, but let’s gloss over that for now. So despite not being like the stranger, I thought that looking forward after a failure was a fantastic approach to life. And at times like these, such as when a relationship has not worked out, using a philosophy like Quo Vadimus forces us to focus on those things that we can still control, those things that are a constant truth and the things that are genuinely important to us. The recriminations, the remorse and the regret have their place, but not for long. By focussing on the future, the past becomes a lesson to guide us and improve us- it doesn’t dominate our lives and it doesn’t paralyse us into not taking the chance again, should it ever come up. I hope the chance of another story involving a girl occurs, but then I am still an eternal optimist.