Today's post is going to be a little different. I don't apologise.
This morning I found out that on Friday night a lad I went to school with has died. I don't know details, nor will I ask but the news has come at somewhat of a shock to all of us who went to school together, plus countless others who had met Carl.
The fact is that he was 30. That's nothing. He was married to Fay, whom he met at school and had two young children. It is just so cruel that someone so young has been taken away from his family, just as it is beginning.
This is Carl on the last day of school before our A Level exams. He was 18 here. The boys dressed up in female school uniform, just so you know. It wasn't a regular thing. At least not as I recall!
This was taken at our Sixth Form Ball. Only a few months after the other.
I don't have any sensible pictures of Carl. Except maybe our Year 11 photograph as a class but it's really not a great picture as a whole. I guess that probably says something about the type of chap that Carl was. Always having a good time.
I was never a great friend of his, nor did I really keep in touch after school, but social networking etc keeps certain connections alive. You can see family lives and how people's lives change and grow. I was 11 when I first met Carl. He was in my form for 5 years. During those awkward phases when girls really don't like boys. And then when girls start to quite like boys after all!
I can't write a lot about what he was like after the age of 18 as I don't know. He was a great friend to people that I am still friends with. A caring husband and a loving father.
The news took me by surprise as previously stated. It has shocked me to the core. It's a reminder that things like this can happen to anyone at any time. I know it's not the way to think, but it really puts things into perspective in my own life. I complain about work all the time. We're not going through a great time in our lives at present for a few reasons I won't go into here. Yet we're happy and healthy. We're planning our wedding and the rest of our lives together. I really can't complain any more as we don't have it as bad as some.
I should leave this post here as it's very sombre and not my usual tone. One thing I will be taking from today is that I will tell the people that mean a lot to me exactly that. I know it's not the way to live your life, fearing what is around the corner, but telling loved ones that you care about them is important any day. There is never any harm in making sure that they know that. Telling them one more time is no bad thing.
Sleeping Maia. Just so there is some happiness in this post.