Posts from the Past: Two Tanquerays


Just shy of three years ago I wrote this email to my close friends and family. It was a story of one chapter ending and another beginning. In not to many days those three years will have come and gone. Hmm…sounds like a follow up is due ;). Stay tuned and for the time being enjoy!

Friends,

It’s been forever and a day since I last sat down, drew fingers to keyboard and scratched out the thoughts that have been rattling around my little noggin recently.

It’s April 26th, roughly 4am GMT and I’m squeezed into seat 38G of my American Airlines Boeing 777. I’m right near the back they gave me a ski rope when I boarded and told me to watch out for the bumps.

It’s been an interesting month to say the least. At a shade past 9pm on April 4th I crossed out of my 20’s and into my 30’s. It’s a perfectly round number and I like it. I’ve closed the chapter on a solid decade of fun… a good chunk of which I can’t share here and entered a time when I can justifiable turn the leaf on those chunks of my life that needed a good dusting. It’s a whole new world as they say!

I didn’t get many presents but I did get one that surely trumped all the rest. How’s this for a birthday present. At 3am on April 1st, I smacked myself awake, took a shower and dropped my luggage in the car. I knew what this day would bring but I plugged along nonetheless… ever heard of a Lemming? I climbed aboard my first flight and after a predictable delay in DC found my way to Ft. Lauderdale. The air was warm, the sun shining and the ever present memory of my first ever sales trip with Key lingering in the air. This was, after all, where I came on my first assignment for Key. We closed a $12m deal that trip and set some Sambucca shots on fire in a bar in Miami shortly thereafter!

I made my assigned call to my boss, as I was asked to do when I landed and just before I made it to baggage claim he answered the phone, asked me to hold and patched in his boss. This is always an ominous sign… be aware :-). In the minutes that followed I was informed that there were too many chiefs and not enough indians and that sadly I would need to go. I suppose to start my own tribe but that wasn’t offered.

By noon that day I had convinced my mother this wasn’t an April Fool’s joke and booked the last seat on the last flight back to Boston. I didn’t ask how much it cost. And so ended my career with Key. Five solid years of hard work, good fun and the odd paycheck or two. It was a birthday present to end all birthday presents. I just didn’t know it at the time.

My ripple at work lasted a few days… not too much more and I awoke on my birthday with the sharp realization that this was either incredibly embarrassing, a massive knock on my ego and just about the most devastating thing that ever happened to me… OR NOT. In somewhat of a maddening fury I set about undertaking the grandest of spring cleanings a lad has ever done. I organized EVERTHING. I unpacked all my goodies from Colorado, made bags of clothes to donate, piles to post on eBay and many more boxes of stuff to yard sale away.

It was incredibly and unbelievably therapeutic. In just a few short days I brought order, not just in possessions and files but in the sharp mental clarity that I had given five years to my work and strangely didn’t miss it a pinch. I had worked hard, damn hard, given much in the name of progressing my career and arrived with a few prized possessions, a pile of good memories and a resurgence of the feeling of adventure that had once defined my daily spirit.

I’m now officially unemployed, or semi-retired if you like that better and on a plane to the country and town, Brighton, UK, where it all began some 30 years ago. I’m not sure what life’s plan was for me but it must surely have decided to put a few more of the ingredients together and decided I am ready for the oven.

It’s just all too crazy to be a mistake! I just turned 30, don’t have a job, a car, or a home! I do have a paycheck for the time being, a car on a boat steaming out of Sweden and I’m convinced I will find my little patch of North America if I keep looking. For the time being I’m like a chicken waiting to hatch. everything is ready to fire I just need to make the first push out!

It’s been such a damn good experience these past few weeks I couldn’t pass up the chance to open my laptop and peck away at the keys and tell you what’s shaking and baking in the life of Sutch. I feel justifiably like life has given me a swift kick in the ass and told me that I’m not getting any younger, there’s too damn much out there to see, do, taste, touch, feel and experience that I’ve got to get out of my bubble, get a tattoo, scream at the moon and pull out the big sails and find some strong wind.

I feel alive like I haven’t for many years. Ever try to hold on to a firecracker… all that bottled up energy just waiting to greet the evening sky? I had done a good job keeping that snuggled down under layers of work emails, and the trials and tribulations of focusing all too often on the wrong things and forgetting that life was dishing up strawberries every day.

Well I’m up for strawberries… with cream… ooh! and with sugar too! We only get one life after all, although I still think sometimes that I will live forever, and I’m glad for the opportunity to wipe the mud from my eyes, pick myself up and cowboy up for another round of life and another chapter of adventures. I should have auditioned for Indiana Jones!

Well the bumps are starting and after a few years of flying I’ve learned the secret to blissful travel… two gin and tonics…. preferably Tanqueray. It’s English after all :-). I hope your own adventures are digging up treasures and if you’re up for a pint, or two!, then give me a shout, I’m free and would love to connect, wax poetic and share a small order of laughs.

Toodle pip 🙂
Ben

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