‘He knows not where he’s going, for the ocean will decide. It’s not the destination … it’s the glory of the ride.’ Edward Monkton
A friend gave me this greeting card and it made me smile because I’ve always had a relaxed zen attitude to life, even though I’ve been tossed and turned on its choppy waters and been washed up on the stony beach of life more than once. But I’m a survivor and after several years of rowing in the doldrums my sails are now billowing in the wind.
My life has taken me from a complicated childhood, to a strict English boarding school, to a skuzzy squat off Portobello Road, to a friendly village in Hampshire and on to uber trendy Brentwood in Los Angeles, California.
I’ve worked as a wig maker for wax museums, a prison visitor, a dominatrix, a PR practitioner, an artist, a writer and a university professor.
I literally met my first husband and father of my only child in the gutter. He ran a fruit and veg stall in the famous Portobello Road market in Notting Hill. My second husband was an angry depressive with an eating disorder and my third husband was a bona fide conman with a secret prison record.
Anyone ‘normal’ would have given up on romance at this point, but ever the optimist I went full steam ahead and tied my colours to the mast of ‘the beloved’ – my fellow ocean traveller who offers me a safe and loving harbour quite unlike anything I’ve experienced before. His background of ‘Old Hollywood Royalty’ is as far removed from my life in ‘Gentle Dimwiddy’ in England as is possible to imagine.
I’ve written all my adult life and have had several books published but I’ve never blogged before. My friend, Emma, recommended, ‘The Million Dollar Blog’ by Natasha Courtenay-Smith and I consumed it in one sitting. (I teach media and creative writing and thought I may as well learn what a blog actually is as I teach students how to write them – yes, I know, plumbers always have leaky taps in their homes and cobblers have holes in their shoes!)
So here it is … my first blog post. I feel like I’m perching on a rocky outcrop about to launch myself into the sea of absurdity – which is perfectly OK because chuckling at life’s absurdities is what keeps me happy.
I’m looking forward to sharing some of these absurdities with you as I sail on the high seas of blogging. I’m especially looking forward to sharing my chalk and cheese life in a quiet English village and loud and proud Los Angeles where I split my time 50/50.
But most of all, I’m looking forward to sharing some of the lessons I’ve learned in life, the most important of which is ENJOY THE RIDE because the destination really isn’t that important. Just make sure you steer a straight course, have fun along the way, stay healthy and be kind.
If you want to ride the waves, I think one of my books now sells for the grand sum of one penny on Amazon, ‘How To Get What You Want’ by Sandra Cain and Michelle Maxwell and published back in 2004 by How To Books.
The title says it all…
Feel free to splash out!
Santa Barbara, December 2016