“My idea of love comes from a childhood glimpse of pornography” – Richey James Edwards
I’ve been brewing up many of these Sunday’s Inspiration posts but these days I’m a bit more strict on myself so I haven’t cooked them. Like an established artist I delete some and I only pick the ones I feel are right. It’s like the track you never heard on that Oasis album (think Stay Young or Bonehead’s Bank Holiday). 4 or 5 have fallen by the way side, but this one has been revitalised when I backpacked through Lithuania 2 months ago so I’m posting it today.
The message for today is that from every end, a new beginning starts. Obvious, maybe. Obtrusive and convincing. It’s almost 6 years since I backpacked in Taiwan. I owe a lot to Taiwan. It made me a proper backpacker and I know it, and you know it. Remember the days before Taiwan?? I was blowing money on extravagant hotels in Venice for the girl who never wanted me. I was buying the dearest beer on the menu in Slovenia and I paid for a limousine to take me skydiving (OK so I budget backpacked the hell out of New Zealand in 2007 too…). But Taiwan was a new start, something I touched on before.
“It’s never to late to make a brand new start” – Paul Weller
It never is, but when does an end end and a start start? When does a start end and an end start? What’s the defining moment? The truth is, you know it when it happens. I closed the door on my career on car ferries in September 2009 in order to find some relaxation and charm in Taiwan, with the probability that I would end up in an Irish Pub in Australia serving Guinness. It wasn’t just a pipe dream. I made it happen. But in between, something ended and in the end, something began.
“Every beginning comes from some other beginning’s end” – Semisonic
As I listened to my English friends James and Sam singing the words of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler in Heroes bar (once the Slug and Lettuce) in Bournemouth in 2009 on my farewell night in Europe, I shed the biggest tear. It was an end. The boys made me cry. That’s lads for you.
“Turn around, every now and then I get a little bit lonely”
(sure thing, no shit Holmesy)
Taiwan was the game changer. It was an un-used sub. Yeah I’d been to China two years earlier as a naive backpacker. But in Taiwan my pulse pumped, my heart beat and every day was an adventure. Ask my best mate Millwall Neil – he’d never seen me so buzzing. The Bournemouth dream had ended. The door closed on Europe and the new beginning was Taiwan. Life had changed and there was no going back. I had no fear.
“It’s the eye of the tiger, it’s the cream of the fight” – Rocky
I wasn’t scared of anything any more. Guess what? I did all sorts of crazy sh*t. I started to make a list of things to write about in the book of mine and it’s mostly crazy stuff. It won’t be tips on backpacking for sure. Like I got my dick sucked in Taiwan in the upstairs of a local bar in the city of Kaohsiung. Just because a girl said to me “Way Goran i suck your dick” (and she bought me a drink too). After that, I headed to the southern most tip of the island for inspiration and I got it. Millwall Neil and loads of Taiwanese people had me out partying by night, eating ridiculous food by day like duck face and sweating floods all afternoon. It was crazy and life was good again. The end was over. It was a new beginning. Europe was over. Asia had arrived. I drank a bottle of wine as I watched the solemn sun sink on the southern tip of Taiwan and bang.
When I landed in Malaysia on route to Australia, I was a changed man. I set my sights on bigger things. I was done with the past and it was time to aim high.
“Aim high, no pale imitation” – Neil Finn
So if you’re at a crossroads while reading this, you might be near the end of a beginning, and if you are there should be a new start. Close the door on your horrors of yesterday and live a little. It ain’t a bad old world.