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It appears that today is, again, my birthday.

Only this one is going to be one of the most non-eventful I’ve ever had the so-called privilege to experience.

The problem this time is that not only am I older, I have not achieved anything in the last year. At least while I’ve been in school or university, I’ve been able to say that – well, I’ve completed another year of studies. But this past year has been one notable failure after another. All of which has been tediously chronicled on this blog so much that I’m bored of writing about another week not doing anything.

But something else makes this birthday even crapper than normal. The fact that I’m still awake, and will be for another two hours at least, and will be then sleeping until approximately 11am. Only then to get up, have breakfast, do some housework, and then work from 3pm until 10pm in one of the scummiest areas of my home city. I will then come home by about 11pm, with approximately one hour left of my birthday in which to “celebrate” with my family.

Pretty rubbish. And it gets worse, because I’m then working nights the next three days, so there is no chance of us being able to go out for a meal in the evening – which is usually what we like to do for birthdays here. A little break from the norm of having to cook food.

On the brighter side, my patience with living here has finally snapped, due to a combination of family members, family circumstances and terribly behaved dogs which I really don’t like. But now with my new, old job, there is a definite prospect opening up that I could well be able to afford to move out.

There are some new apartments that have been built a couple of miles from here. They are perfectly located, with an ASDA next door, the train station a stone’s throw away, a major retail site nearby, and bus links that go all over the city. The apartment in question just about has enough room to swing a cat and costs a shocking £395/month.

But I think I can do it. In fact, for the sake of my sanity, I must do it.

So I’ve begun to make enquiries. The ball is well and truly rolling on this.

I feel like the only way I’ll get on in life is if I get out. Get out and resume the life I lived for four years. I liked my independence and freedom. I hate being answerable to parents, I’m fed up of living with family members who don’t even talk to me any more and with whom I don’t seem to have any relationship. And I’m sick of all the work I do in this house being taken for granted. They sure will be in for a shock.

So in truth, the best birthday present I could get this year would be a free pass out of here. That’s not to say I don’t like my family, but familiarity certainly does breed contempt. If I get out of here, that crucial distance may be what I need for re-evaluating my relationship with each one of them. Then I’ll be less of a “parent” figure and more of a sibling again.

Anyway. Time for a celebratory episode of Prison Break. Now coming to the end of the third series…

In Business

Officially, I am now self-employed.

Unofficially, there’s nothing much to show for it just yet. That’s the tricky thing. Though I’m spending money on business items such as a phone contract, tools, equipment, stationery and marketing, there is no money coming in yet, and I don’t expect there to be for a little while yet.

As the phrase goes, you gotta speculate to accumulate. And I sure am speculating. I really have no idea how this is going to go. It could be a massive failure. It could be a big success. More likely it will be somewhere inbetween, but that isn’t a particularly brilliant bit of foresight – it’s just an educated guess. 

The realisation of the size of the gamble grew on me a couple of days ago when I drew up my first cash flow sheet. The income column had one potential source: sales. The expenditure column was a huge list of potential and actual things I will be spending my money on. And it is my own money. Though there’s not exactly a huge amount of cost involved, it is my risk to take. No grants, no loans, no money from grandparents… it’s all me. 

The key now is getting the message out. Within a few weeks I need to be able to say that there is potential here, though I’m not going to give up too easily. To me, almost every house has a computer now. And every computer is under constant pressure from viruses and spyware and endless Windows Updates. To me, that is a lot of possible customers. Yes, I know a lot of people know how to fix their computers, but I’d say the majority don’t. In fact, if the problem is hardware related, I’d say the vast majority don’t. 

So then the question boils down to whether there’s enough competition. I would say that there isn’t. But only time is going to prove that one either way. We’ll see.

I’m wondering, with more than a little nervousness, when my first call is going to come and what the problem is going to be. I’m also left thinking where they are living too, as transport could be a bit of an issue for me if I don’t work this out correctly. Hopefully they are just around the corner – that would make it even easier. Once the first job is over with, I’ll start to feel more confident about where this is all heading.

In the meantime, once again I’m having to play the waiting game. My life seems to be filled with it at the moment. Everything is a huge case of “wait and see”. Even Prison Break, of which I’ve now got just one episode left of Season 2, is making me wait, putting me on a wonderful cliffhanger.

In my student days I would have watched the final episode right now. But I can’t. For the past week now we’ve had work going on in the house, finally to give us a renovated bathroom and a real shower. I can’t wait. But for now, there is lots of knocking and banging and general disruption to put up with. And all of that makes the dog even worse than ever. Not good at all.

Back to the clock watching…