Monday, 2 April 2012

Why I learned to stop worrying and love driving

I feel that this blog is coming to the end of its natural life. To be honest, it has never really taken off, never really flowed, not for me or for you, my readers. I have tried on a couple of occasions to change the direction of the blog, to make it more personal, but it never felt quite right. I think if I wanted to write about more personal stuff I would have to start a new blog, but I don't really want you to know too much personal stuff about me, because, well, it's personal.

So since I will probably be winding it up in the next few months, now is the time to write all the posts I have had floating around in my mind for the last few months but just haven't got round to writing.

The thing is I love driving and always have. I have always loved the freedom and the independence. I am never happier than when I am moving around thinking, whether that be walking, driving or rowing. Driving for a living means I get paid to do what I am happiest doing.

I thought it was something about what driving facilitates that I loved, so I tried to go into teaching it to facilitate that in others, but I was never that keen. I thought it might be the technicality that I loved and tried to write about it to enthuse others, but I bored even myself. Underlying all of these attempts to take driving further was the underlying belief that, being a fairly clever and well-educated person, I ought to be doing something more with it, that driving itself wasn't good enough. I had a constant voice in my head asking, 'yes, but what are you going to do when you grow up?'.

But then I stopped. Because the fact is it is driving itself that I love. Sitting in a chair, looking out of a window for hours on end is not considered a worthwhile way to spend your time normally, but if you are driving, then you can sit and look out of a window for days and days and not only is it worthwhile, they actually pay you!

Over the coming months, on top of my work driving trucks for Royal Mail (nights, long distance - best thinking time) I will tow boats down to Cornwall for my rowing club, will pick bands up from airports for the Wimborne Folk Festival and will be a fleet driver based at the Olympic Park as a Gamesmaker for London 2012. If ever faced with a situation where I have to volunteer for something, my first thought will always be 'do they need any drivers?'. So if ever I volunteer to drive you somewhere, don't be too grateful. You're probably doing me a favour too.


  1. I felt like I knew exactly where this post was going as I started to read it. It's the curse of a grammar-school/University education: this nagging voice in your head that you should be doing something graduate or post-graduate level as a career. But to find something that you love doing is a real blessing.
    I have so enjoyed reading about your love for driving. It reminds me of what I love about driving. In fact, the jobs I've enjoyed most have been the ones that included an element of solitary driving. Perhaps it says more about the loner in us. I love long drives, where I don't have to talk to anyone, and I can just focus on the thoughts in my head. It becomes a conversation with myself, and it's where I usually develop my most creative ideas into possible projects.
    Damn. Wish I'd got my truck license now. I guess it's never too late. Maybe that's something to consider for the future.

    p.s. Pandora Gulliver is web pseudonym.
    Sam Brightwell

    1. Thanks Sam. I know to a lot of people (not you) going from doing postgrad research to driving trucks seemed like a huge change but what they both have in common is hours of solitude with just a little bit of human contact which is just the way I like it.

  2. Just came across this blog and it looks like it may be coming to an end, in regards to what you have stated. As a thought, I know you said you wanted to write about personal stuff but it's personal. Then why not consider doing a personal blog but under a pseudo name and write your thoughts, 'killing 2 birds with one stone' so to speak. That way you don't have to worry about others knowing it is about you, and you can also interact with others on a different level.

    Anyway, it is a great shame it you stop but I do understand what you are saying in this post. Whatever you do decide, I wish you all the best, and will pop by again to see whats happening. Thanks for the good read today.

    1. Thanks Rum-Punch Drunk. I have thought of loads of other blogs I could set up but the desire has never been strong enough to actually do it. I hadn't thought of writing under a pseudonym, maybe I'll give it a try.

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