As I’m writing this, my head is throbbing after having drank(drunk?) all that beer.
Just a 5-minute walk down from Parkinson Steps, and you will reach one of the friendliest pubs in Leeds. On a normal Saturday, I’d walk to the Plaza, train for about an hour and half (touch sparring, mitts etc), and have a damn good dinner at Noodle House. Just today, my Nasi Lemak had a fried egg instead of a boiled one. The difference between the two is similar to choosing between living an awesome life (fried egg, duh) and living an average life.
After dinner, we’d go to The Fenton to have a pint. 2 quid. Easy. We’d sit and talk about things that matter, such as love, friendship, and just recently, inequality. We’d discuss this while having Carlsberg, Dusk, or some other relatively unknown type of ale/lager. I don’t even know what’s the difference between the two.
Tonight, good rock music was being played and James was just rocking out in his own world; because of this, we met two men in their 50s: Simon and Mark. They’d known each for over 20 years. Both of them had stayed in Leeds for about 50 years. They offered us more beer, after they saw how empty our glasses were. How kind, right? But it got better.
Whatever Mark said tonight was some of the wisest things I’ve heard in a while from anyone.
Money doesn’t matter.
Age doesn’t matter.
Just live your life the way you want to live it.
It was evident that Mark walked the talk, after he told me about his dreams, his failed marriage, and his love for the Far East. He’s chilled out, relaxed, and drinking beer with two Malaysian strangers he had just met.
At one point, it became clear that Mark could judge someone after having a brief conversation with them. Tonight, that someone was myself. “What are you going to do after completing your degree?” he asked. I paused, as I tried to think of the most honest thing I could say to him. Before I could speak he asked again, “Are you going to go home and make the lives of Malaysians much better?”
Holy shit. I was stunned.
“How did you know?”
“I just do.”
Great training session, great Nasi Lemak for dinner, great Wasabi sashimi after dinner, great beer, and most importantly, great people. Today was awesome.