Count to ten and start again…
So warbled Adele at the start of Skyfall – a film in which James Bond had to come to grips with gritty personal issues and major life changes – and in some way I can empathise.
The past few months of my life I’ve had to face a number of things changing, things ending and things moving on.
When I found the farm all those years ago and took my newly aquired Aston Martin V8 (AKA RO)J up to restore I never dreamt I would be there for so long – or make such good friends along the way.
But now it’s over.
The farm and buildings are to be razed and redeveloped.
When i started on my odyssy, I was welcomed into the circle by Malcolm and Clive and John and Robert. And at the end by Phil and Steve – and lately Ray and Charlie – with a huge crowd of motoring misfits in-between, all of whom showed patience and kindness to a ham-fisted amateur.
I shall miss my weekends up in Bedfordshire. There was often more beer drunk and beef barbecued than bits bolted onto ROJ – but that was half the fun.
Now the sheds are echoingly empty and the corridors of the house cluttered with packing crates.
ROJ has always been a bit of a Frankenstien’s Aston – I bought three and a half old wrecks and piles of parts – and have ended up with one rather lovely, albeit unfinished, car. It may not be all of the car driven by Rowan Atkinson, but it’s most of it!
How ROJ arrived at the farm
The ‘somewhere inbetween’ shot
How ROJ left the farm
My Aston Martin, my tools and all the parts are now in London – I’ve still got masses of work to do on the car – although the engine is still up in storage to be rebuilt by the professionals, but now I’ve only got to stroll out of the door at home and round the back to the garage, and I can screw on something shiny whenever I feel like it.
ROJ in pyjamas – with 24hr security guard!
With an election looming, my work with the landmines group has diminished, while other avenues are opening up.
Last week I had meetings in Barcelona and in Zagreb – didn’t see anything of Barcelona, but had a quick tour round the city of Zagreb – and you know how I love trams!
And planes with propellors.
From now on, I really must develop a proper work life balance 49% work, 49% ROJ and sleep for the rest!