I’m jumping ahead to 1995 when I met my wife Hannah in the city of Derby, where I spent my teenage and some of my adult life. I have skipped to this part because so much happened before then, it will take me ages to get to this stage. I will however, go back to tell you how I got on after my mothers death.
Before I met Hannah, my life was full of ups and downs and I still hadn’t found my place in life. Still getting into fights, trouble with the police and general stupidity. I had good friends at the time so everything wasn’t always bad and we had some great times together. On the other hand, I had made some enemies who made my life hell and made it difficult for me to cope with life, a low point.
In late 95 myself and a friend went to some students house as my friend Keiran knew them. Among the students ( Lucy and Charlotte ) a young Hannah took my eye. We started to chat and I found her very easy to talk to, someone with a great sense of humor. This for me is everything, I found her personality irresistible, infectious and warm, from then on we went everywhere together enjoying each others company.
I mentioned my Brother Neil in the last Blog. Neil and I lived together at this point as he also was struggling with life. My brother and I had lost contact for many years after we had left home in 1989. We were unfortunately forced to live apart, myself went to live in a social workers house (who later was charged as a pedophile) and my brother had his own apartment somewhere in Derby. By the time we had found each other, Neil had developed cataracts and was nearly blind. He had an operation and luckily this was a success.
He eventually moved into my flat but was a little shocked with the way I lived, not that I was messy or anything like that, I was quite the opposite. It was the fact that I smoked cannabis and had a number of parties late at night, but thing that most shocked him was the fact I was still fighting and at times the fight would be outside my front door.
One morning I went to ask my brother if he’d like a cuppa but when I opened his door he had gone, everything had gone! I was so puzzled and didn’t understand what was happening. I asked all his friends but nobody had seen him, where the hell was he? After days of worry, I decided to contact my younger sister Samantha, she was living in Scotland near her father(my step dad), his wife and kids, she then told me that he was living up there near where she was staying. Phew! what a relief, what a shit for not telling me!
So, time went on, after a couple of months in the winter of early 96 I get a knock on the door, it’s a lone policeman, this wasn’t uncommon for me. What was uncommon was the message he delivered, It was a message of a death, my brothers death.
Neil had always had problems with asthma but continued to smoke even with the advise from friends and family not to. The young policeman looked very uncomfortable but said “I’m sorry to say, your brother Neil has passed away in his sleep due to his lungs collapsing in the night, the ambulance service tried to revive him but were unsuccessful as he’d been dead for too long before they got there”. He asked if I was ok, if I needed any help and then handed me a leaflet on seeking help with bereavements.
Again, my life had taken another turn, a painful turn, more painful than any fight or any injury. a pain like no other that couldn’t be fixed.
I will continue in the second part of this blog in a few days as I have to work tomorrow. In the second part I will get to the chefing I promise. What happened to Hannah and myself and I’ll go into who and what inspired me to start in the industry.
Catch you all soon x