Over the past few years I seem to have become quite the pessimist. I don’t know why, but I have. It might have something to do with writing (expecting rejection), it might be because I’ve felt let down by some people, or it might just be a natural part of me growing older. Whatever the reason, I don’t like it. I used to be quite the opposite.
And I might be changing back. Let me tell you about a couple of things that happened last night that made me remember that people are good.
I met an old friend for a beer. We don’t see too much of each other really (I think this was the second time this year) because I’m busy and he’s busy. But we went out, drank beer, talked and it was good. And I think that, as I’ve been feeling quite nostalgic of late, talking about old times was good too (it’s nine years this weekend since he and his girlfriend first met – I remember it well – congratulations).
So, his taxi came and he left and I stayed, and I’d have been perfectly happy to stay and finish my drink on my own. But three ladies on the next table saw that I was alone and insisted I joined them. That, I thought, was a lovely gesture.
I walked home the Long Way, chips and gravy in hand, and re-traced the route of my old Sunday morning paper round. And I enjoyed it, it was a time to reflect and to feel content.
At the top of my road there’s a bench. I like that bench. You can see Manchester’s lights from it. And, last night, when I reached it I sat on it. My earphones were in, my phone by my side and I just sat and enjoyed the view and the peace. It was good.
I was approached by two men who looked agitated and for a moment I was a little worried. But really it was them who were worried because they thought I’d fallen asleep and had left my phone on show.
Those two things are not the sort of things that happen to me. But I’m glad they did. I’m glad there are good people in the world and I’m glad that I was reminded of that.
It was also nice to see so many people on Twitter who, when I mention I’m cross/annoyed by something get in touch to say cheer up. And just a word on that – I’ll often Tweet whatever’s in my head without really thinking about it, so please, don’t read too much into it! I really am ok! Promise!
And here’s what I was listening to on the bench. An old one. But still quite good.