Today sees the second anniversary of me suffering a heart attack. A major life, and nearly death, event making me acutely aware of the exactitude of oft used old cliche ‘Live every day as it’s your last’. Admittedly, I still don’t always adhere to that mantra, however, the episode has instilled in me a stronger determination to make the most of skills presented by both nature and nurture.

For instance, it drove me to leave a loveless marriage of thirty years, building a wealth of fond memories with a host of inspirational acquaintances, visit beautiful locations in Wales, Scotland and Canada, along with navigating new creative sojourns.

Coronavirus has obviously curtailed the levels of brio experienced during this last ten months, but I still count myself blessed to have been afforded a second chance to seek and experience the brighter things in life. I’d have hated to have passed in January 2019 without receiving the affection which’d being denied during the previous three decades.

Likewise, missed out on producing a further 20 books of blogs or experience the joy manifesting from drawing. The latter a pastime/hobby, which until August 2020, I’d not undertaken since my 1970’s schooldays.

From recollection, my artwork wasn’t particularly good at school. In fact, my drawing was so poor the Geography teacher Mr Tinkler thought my sketching of the Sri Lankan coastline was a depiction of the appendix I’d had removed the previous week….. I got an ‘E’ from Tinkler for the work, but on the plus side I got a ‘B+’ three month later when submitting the same picture in a humans intestines project for Biology class.

People often ask me why yours truly writes so much (2,000+ blogs and counting), along with the circumstances which keep me so driven. Well, I guess having my heart attack was a major contributing factor to this literary relentlessness.

The incident raising the profile of my own mortality, consequently meaning I’m determined to relay as many ideas from my cranial database onto paper before god shouts “Number 10 can you come in, please. You’re time’s up!!”….. That’s if my metaphorical existential rowing boat is number 10. If I’m number 12, I’d be able to breathe a temporary sigh of relief; although I’d give number 10 my sincere condolences as they rowed jetty bound.

Although, not wishing to dwell on the health scare twenty four months ago, it’d be remiss of me not to express my relief at dialling ‘999’ that night; instead of acting upon my initial reaction of cure by antacid tablets. A delay which’d potentially resulted in me now pushing up the daisies; rendering me incapable of ever again inquiring of my mother “Any chance you can lend me a fiver until payday, mum?

You may deem this chronicle a tad sombre, dark and self-indulgent. However, it’s delivered with tongue firmly pressed in cheek. I don’t dwell on the stark side of having a heart attack, on the contrary I endeavour to make light of it.

After all, if you can laugh at the most alarming of life episodes, surely that’s a good thing; showing an individual bears a degree of character to cock a snook at the existential imposter. Either that or I’m a deeply disturbed so and so.

If truth be told it’s probably an amalgam of character, defiance and being slightly tapped. If you ever suffer a heart attack and are still around to retell the tale you’re a lucky person. Well, unless you get knocked over by a bus mid yarn!