I have recently been told by an experienced sharp-witted Slovak woman that to try and be happy is pointless. That the point of living is to just live. Take it as it come.

I admit I don’t do happiness well.

I have been happy though. And the ingredients back then were:

  • near complete sexual satisfaction
  • I felt my writing career was going somewhere
  • I was in shape
  • I had friends (or at least I thought I had friends)
  • great conversations
  • an astounding number of laughs, to this day I don’t know why we laughed so much back then
  • I felt much more in control of what I did or didn’t do, I had a strict routine
  • my financial future seemed secure (odd that I felt like that at that time)
  • it didn’t seem like I should be having like a 100 times more than what I had, there wasn’t this feeling in the air that by being a little bit clever you could overnight become a millionaire and I didn’t see any examples of that, so I didn’t feel like that should be my scenario too. The culture I lived in wasn’t so obsessed with success
  • To be perfectly honest, I felt a bit better than other people…
  • I felt like I was doing enough, that I fairly disciplined, looked good, knew how to talk to people, had it all figured out

Some of these things can’t be recreated. I don’t think I’ll ever laugh the way I had to laugh back then. Am working on getting in shape. Am trying to be more grateful for what I already have. My writing career looks more auspicious than back then.

I wouldn’t say am happy. There are still tons of frustrations, little defeats, insatiable desires to deal with, and the dreadful thought that the future is going to get worse as I age and people around me keep getting duller and duller. But who knows? I have a friend who – when he is in a good mood – says that life starts at 50.

Another friend said: ‘At least you know what you want in life, I never do.’