If you are reading this story in your email.
Pop to this link because there’s an image you need to see for it to make most sense: https://www.50odd.co.uk/echoes/.
This house makes me feel funny.
It makes me feel tingly.
I was brought up on Manchester in a small semi-detached.
My dad cleared off when I was 11.
So my mum brought up me, my sister and my brother – alone.
We were always a bit skint, I suppose.
But we were OK.
I had many paper rounds and retail jobs and bar jobs so I was fine financially.
But I was lazy academically back then.
Quite childish, actually.
So I came out of Northumbria University with a very ordinary 2:2 result.
Between the age of 20 and 40 I worked hard.
I loved my work.
I was so naive, young, inexperienced, fearlessly creative and blind to what was risky and what wasn’t risky in business – that I was brilliant at running businesses.
I built 4 of them in this time.
Businesses that turned over seven figures for a few years at their peak.
And Lisa and I bought this house.
The one in the picture.
Hirst Head Farm.
Seeing a photo of Hirst Head Farm still makes me feel excited.
It was – and probably still is – beautiful.
In every single detail.
We made it palatial and characterful and deeply experiential as a place as well as a home.
Lisa, Colin the dog and I had everything.
In our ‘forever house’.
Yet, as sometimes happens in life.
And after just one full year in our forever house.
Maybe a little longer.
Lisa and I separated.
There are echoes of this house in my life even today.
8 years later.
Echoes of regret, mostly.
Because even though I know regret is a fruitless emotion.
And even thought I know the house was the right home at the wrong time.
It still hurts a bit.
Because it is a great source of regret for me that we are no longer there.
Yet it also reminds me of my sadness.
My bad behaviour.
I’ve waited years for the echoes of this chapter of my life to go away.
But I don’t think they ever will.
Life’s like that I suppose.
Because whilst I know that I’d never go back there.
Even if I could.
The echo remains.
As a PS.
Two things quieten the echo.
- Remembering that what I still have, and now have, are far more precious than anything in the photograph with this story.
- Everything that I loved that is in this photograph, with the right application, focus and hard work – can be won again.
The echoes are a little quieter now.