All my 1 year Anniversaries done

So, this is it. It’s a year today since I flew “home”. That’s all  of my one year anniversaries done. Divorce, Wedding Anniversary where I’m no longer actually married, birthdays, the works. It’s a year since I spoke with Esther verbally A year since I’ve heard her voice. 

I hate what this blog has become. It needs to change. For a year and a few weeks it’s been orientated around the anger and desolation which have engulfed me since I finally said “genoeg” (Enough!). Even now, there is so much vitriol waiting to erupt in the wake of the events a couple of days ago where, in yet another example of selfish mufkut-ery the entity calling itself van Sluijs decided to completely erase our old relationship on Facebook, thus meaning that over 100 pictures vanished, all tagged check-ins are gone, anything she shared on my wall is gone and anything I shared on hers meets the same fate. 8 and a half years of memories, wiped away. I, of course, have left all my albums open so that she can view and swipe any pictures that she wants because, while I would happily rejoice at hearing she’d been mown down by a bus .. I’m actually a decent person who thinks about other’s needs. The idea of erasing memories like that is just far too callous for me to even contemplate. But then that’s Esther. Not a single thought for me. 

I can’t be bothered to write more. The anger is filling me with stress. I had chronic chest pains for the first time since I came back to the UK all night when I saw what she’d done. Time for some music instead.




A year divorced.

Well, I survived yesterday. It’s a year since the paperwork came out of Amsterdam. Technically there’s another week before the “official” divorce date arrives but this was the date when the confirmation was sent to The Hague for ratification. Facebook in all it’s joy threw up the life event which I added, but it wasn’t needed. I knew the date all too well.

Heidi headed out for the day so i was left to my own devices. I debated hitting Krazyhouse and The Swan but I find it hard to justify the outlay when I’m staying here officially homeless and needing to somehow fund Amazon when it comes through sometime this month. Job after job application to tide me over have simply had no reply whatsoever. Acknowledged as received but that’s it. More irksome are the two requests, one from Transline, and one from PMP to go out on jobs for them in Wolverhampton, the latter being Amazon Rugeley again. It would’ve been so easy to be working down there. In point of fact I’d’ve started at Rugeley again anyway on the 19th.

So I sat, blasting solitaire, and being reminded of the situation many years ago when I landed at Julia’s after having tried to do the right thing with Jack, and then out of the blue I get a message from Nz from a lass who was going to put me up while I tried to sort the custody out back in February. “Happy Fathers day.” Being so many hours in front it was already Sunday there. Nothing like an added kick in the teeth when you’re already feeling crap. The lass sending the salutation obviously had no clue as to my mood and the gesture was nice, a good intention which just landed at the wrong time due to a time zone.

I switched from cards to tanks. Several hours later and it was 3am. What should’ve been a chance to grab some extra shuteye turned into nothing of the sort. I’m not sure my mind wants the comfort of sleep anymore. There’s a build up : Blame for not listening to the early warnings years ago re: Esther, and blame for trusting a system I’ve known for years always… ALWAYS.. lets me down. When I managed to get out of Holland I patted myself on the back for surviving. It feels like I undid everything I’d accomplished by trusting a system I knew was flawed. Microcosm/macrocosm I can see the Esther scenario reflected.

And so, much like my initial leaving, and my blog post from back then Another A+E closes it turns out that, even though the actual fault wasn’t mine here, there’s still a way that I’m to blame. It shouldn’t have gone this way, because the expectancy of care and honouring the contract of care was there, my instincts told me that neither would be honoured. And much like Esther has carried on and simply dismissed everything and anything about me without so much as a care, so the system will do nothing for the situation I find myself in. And there’s not a damn thing I can do to exact recompense from either.

Suitcase. Hall. You know the drill.

Well, I’ve moved again. This time to Liverpool. Unplanned, unexpected and unprepared for. It’s been a strange few weeks.

Amazon finished June 19th. It was always going to. My contract with Transline was a 9 month contract, the idea being that you either get laid off before the end, or you get taken on. People completing the 9 month contract doesn’t really happen. In truth, I’m amazed I survived it. Sheer bloodymindedness and the presence of a couple of people in the warehouse were the only reason I walked away after my 9 months sane. After that, you’re obliged to take 8 weeks off before you can go back with the agency, which was pretty much my plan.

“So how come if you lasted the 9 months, did you not get taken on?” I hear you cry. Well, that’s pretty simple. I was due to be taken on, assured it was not going to be a problem by the managers. Then Glenda died. I had a call at stupid o’clock in the morning from someone in New Zealand telling me that she’d died, and then had a half hour conversation with Jack, and from then on stayed up researching what happens next. regarding my being dad and sorting custody. I went in to work that day to tell them that I was unable to work because I needed to see solicitors etc etc and thought no more of it.  Transline saw fit to give me a mark against my attendance because of this, a point which lasted for 3 months. Now, the last conversion date from agency staff to Amazon staff was at the end of March, and thus, this point meant that from the day it was given, both Amazon and Transline knew that I could not be converted within my 9 month time frame. However, they neglected to mention that to me and persisted in telling me that, I would be converted and not to worry. I only found out the truth by accident after having a random drugs test in the HR department where I asked about when my conversion would be, and they said “There are no more conversions for a few months”.

I believe the word is apoplectic. In trying to do what was right for my son in New Zealand, I’d been punished to the point that cost me my permanent job, while still not securing custody. How I didn’t walk out that day when I found out I’ll never know. 

Anyway, I’ve digressed. So, 8 weeks off. I decided to not bother to claim anything, and treat it as a holiday. There’s a certain stigma which hangs over claiming things, and it’s not nice. However, it became obvious that the 8 weeks would in point of fact turn into 10 while working my week in hand, and the unfortunate alignment of days meant that incorporated 3 months rent, amounting to £1050. That’s quite a hit for my savings, and so I thought for the last month, I’ll claim. So I did, and spent accordingly, trusting the system to sort everything out. I’d given my claim in on the 12th July ready for a rent payment August 19th. Seemed a reasonable amount of time. Housing claim went in with the JobSeeker thing, which came through happily, and at a meeting with them I passed on my documents for the housing claim… and thought no more about it until the Monday before the rent was due. In the meantime I’d secured both the chance of a new job, and the chance to return to Amazon again on the 19th, and also had a bust up at home resulting in a huge amount of stress. Deciding “better the devil you know” i knocked the new job on the head and decided, leave Bilston upon starting back at Amazon and grab a new place, and begin again. Use the money from last month’s rent (it’s paid in arrears) to fund a deposit elsewhere, and plough into Amazon again.

Sounded like a plan, but with one small hitch. Just to make sure I knew how much money I’d get for my rent reimbursed I called the office on Monday. “Sorry Mr Wiseman, we’ve no record of the claim”. Only course of action, submit another claim, and wait, which left me stuffed fiscally. No money for a deposit and even if I’d’ve chosen to stay where I was, I couldn’t’ve paid my rent anyway. All because I trusted the system and chose to claim what I was (and still am) entitled to.  With nowhere to stay, I was unable to start back at Amazon and faced landing on the streets. Fortunately my niece Heidi-Rose has stuck her neck out and said I can have her sofa for a while. 

So what now? Good question. I need accommodation, not least because, I’ve actually secured a job at the new Amazon depo in Manchester Airport, and it’s not agency. It’s actually Amazon. Mildly amused that I got my blue badge after all, especially as they rang me 4 times to get me to go over there, but… how the hell do I get to there in a morning? I don’t know. It’s a conundrum. For now it’s a case of surviving, and waiting for a start date confirmation which is late September/early October. If I can grab some work in the meantime… marvellous. If not… I’m going to struggle. 


One year on.

So.. It’s a year today since the wife came back from Opa’s house to Lazaru’s, and I sat at the bar and said “I can’t do this anymore. I want a divorce.” I can still see us sat there as I said “We have nothing in common anymore.” There was no argument from her. No anything really. No “I love you”s. No” Don’t leave”s. All those years I gave, and everything I gave up to be there, and in her eyes I wasn’t even worth the effort of a single protestation. She simply didn’t care. She’d drained me emotionally to the point where I was no longer of use, and thus was fine with me leaving. What existed there was just a husk.

Well. Fuck you Esther. With my help and support we probably put 10 years on her life expectancy as she dropped 76lbs and as a consequence took her blood pressure back to normal for the first time in a decade. I backed her when her family treated her like shite, and when her work tried to force her out (let’s not mention the psychological evaluation issues you had there eh which led to that?). And in return? Nothing. I even stood up for her against a guy 6 stone minimum heavier than I am, climaxing in my breaking my own rule and punching the tosser in the face.

And so,  a year on,  I look at that day,  the day I said “enough”,  and see it as the bravest decision I’ve ever made in my life. To choose to leave,  no matter what the consequences to myself would be, in order to be true to myself,  took balls of steel. I was so nearly consumed that I could easily have said “Sod it” and given up. It’s testament to the hell it felt like there mentally,  that irrespective of living in Holland in a nice house with no money worries and a foreign holiday or two a year,  I still feel so much better over here living in shared accommodation wondering if I’ll be able to pay next month’s rent.

I no longer hate waking up, and the reason for this is simple. I now know that at least one person in my world cares about me. That person is me. I’d spent so many years putting Esther van Sluijs first that I’d forgotten to look after myself. I thought that was in safe hands with her. This was supposed to be reciprocal. I hate being wrong but boy was I wrong on this.

But I got out. I survived. One year more over there and I’m certain I’d not be here, but I know if she’d have shown the slightest inclination to fight for us,  I probably would’ve stayed because my investment there was so great. And that probably would’ve killed me. 

So… one year on. I’m going to  go. Sit in another rock pub,  and grab a pint of a beer I actually want to drink,  speak my language without feeling rude,  grab a pie later on,  and think. There will always be “What if? “s.  It’s human nature. But for now,  I’m going to pat myself on the back and say, ” Well done Wiseman. You did the right thing.”, because I did. I really did. And every interaction since then with her has confirmed it. 





There will come a time,
When all who I’ve cared for,
Will see I did so willingly.
When what I’ve offered,
Will be seen to have been given freely.
When who i am,
Will be realised without the shadow of cynicism.
And when all who I’ve left behind
Because i was not viewed through unblinkered eyes,
Will know that what was once within their reach,
Is still beautiful, but now, so far away.
There will come a time,
When my time will come.
And I will shine.
As i’ve always done,
For those who’d only care to look a little deeper.

A. Wiseman

(written 2nd October 2006)


Work musings.

I often tell people that I think differently to others, and I have to remember this regularly before I speak because, what I see is often not what they see, and thus I should not be shaking my head at what seems so obvious, and then speaking to people with a kind of incredulity at the lack of the concept I then have to explain. 

An example of this is at the workplace. There are sooo many people who sit and grumble about the stupidity of the other people working there, and it winds me up. Not because the people doing the complaining are not smarter than those which they’re complaining about, because they probably are, and not because it’s a tad socially unacceptable to take the proverbial out of those who are not quite as bright as myself and the others, because that’s the way of the world that’s just how it works in these places. No, neither of those necessarily bother me because I’m not someone else’s moral compass.

So, what bothers me is this: It’s entirely possible that the people in question, may well have attained as much as they can to be in this work position. Where they are now, could be the fulfillment of their potential. They’re being the best they can be. And yet, the people doing the ridiculing… are they being the best THEY can be? Are they at the highest point that their potential offers? People with degrees, ex programmers, people like myself with an IQ bordering on genius levels on the right day? Professionals and academics and multi-qualified ladies and gents. I think not. And as such, surely, if someone deserves ridicule, it’s not the people who’ve reached the pinnacle of their potential, but those who haven’t. Myself included. If we’re so superior, perhaps we should do something about it and aim higher to maximise what we actually achieve in this world? Either that, or at least have the balls to congratulate those who have done what we’re failing to do. They’ve stepped up, and deserve our respect instead of disparaging remarks.


Goodbye 41

Well, what a year that’s been. I’ve gone from living abroad, having a wife, owning my own home, and not needing to work, to being divorced, living in shared accommodation, and I’ve been working from 5 days after I landed back into the country.

It’s been hard.

I’ve lost, or probably a better, more accurate description would be, discarded, almost everything I had. Most through choice, some through circumstance, and some through choice, circumstance , and anger.

And I’ve begun again, not to reinvent me, but to rediscover me.

The things that have hurt me the most, probably shouldn’t have. The realisation that I’d given myself to something that didn’t exist, underlined my ability to judge things poorly. That hurt! And I know, I know, there’s no use crying over spilt beans, but.. gods it’s stained me… but also, I wonder, was my sight so blighted because of all that had gone before? I have to be able to trust me.   I have to, because without that self belief, there really is no point.

So what happens now? Another solar cycle done. I’m 42! The meaning of life, the universe, and everything. If my calculations are correct, and they usually are, I have 44 more work days to work at Amazon (11 weeks)  until they have to offer me a position or release me. That’s not long at all. From there.. I really don’t know what happens actually.

However, I’m hopeful. You never know what’s round the next corner.  But, it’s good to know there will be one soon.