A pure and blissful summers day; a game of rugby deadened into near madness before a restful discussion with the newly introduced associates including the ex-soldier who regularly speaks of his past experiences, violent encounters and the fatal leg crushing car crash that meant his rise to lofty heights soon to be Lance Corporal was ended in an instant. As fate has it, he had ended up in the West Midlands from the similarly murky world of Afghanistan much like I, with no idea as to why but both were madly seeking independence and a leap into the unknown far away from our courses/jobs in Northern England.
Our talks of sport, women and politics, the course he is studying meant we have become trustful of one another which of course is rather difficult easy for men of our aggressiveness and bravado. Yet he has become entwined with his brash character and my deeply serious intellect in a positive manner therefore has lent me several books of high quality in particular The Complete Works of William Shakespeare sealed in magnificent leather hardback with original prints that set him back £90 from a classical bookshop in the North. With my University courses soon to resume, this is an extremely worthwhile read. In turn, I attempted to educate him of the ways of the Pre Raphaelites and the supreme genius of Milton's Paradise Lost which he welcomed with aplomb. To be fair although he does not look it, he acts like an educated figure as he usually spends his time discussing things with the lady and I, reading his extensive collection of books and smoking.
Also he suggested this excellent website for debates of latest news topics and a mirage of thoughts from around the world: http://www.pickledpolitics.com/
Certainly changed my perspective of war and the glory which now has opened my eyes to the untold misery, pain and massacre that my elder relatives would never speak of and my grandfathers died from. The recent fallen veteran of the First World War, Harry Patch said it best on the BBC's Last Tommy "War is organized murder". Nevertheless will this deter our staggeringly inept and arrogant Government under equipping our troops? In this far from benevolent institution, of course not. But we live in hope.