Email 12th April 2010

Fish 2010 - The Yang - Wendy and the chocolate frogs

Dear FishHeads, Freaks, fans and the Company,

I said recently to a good friend of mine that in the last three months I have found myself identifying with the character on the "Fugazi" sleeve on a disturbingly regular basis. Being one of the circle of close friends who have been providing council and support he understood exactly what I meant.

Every morning I walk past the artwork as it hangs over the window to the control room - my office - and every time I get a shiver as I remember those days back in '82 - '83.

The songs started to echo and old images of those days in London peeled from the lyrics and settled in my mind.

I have never known a period in my life since then that has been so bewildering and confusing on so many levels and left me emotionally and mentally exhausted. My heid, as they say, is full of chocolate frogs just now and has been since the end of last year.

It is not a secret that my wife, Katie, left Scotland shortly after Christmas and that I have only seen her for two days this year.

It has been a secret that we have been struggling to keep our marriage together and that our relationship has disintegrated to the point where in the next week or so we will be granted a divorce under Scottish law.

I had genuinely hoped to save our marriage and have tried everything I could within reason in the last three months to keep us together and to find a solution to our dilemma. Sadly it is not to be.

Last Autumn after the circus had left town and the touring ground to a halt we were left in the shrinking daylight in a withered garden with my voice shredding and facing another operation in December.

Despite valiant efforts Kate had struggled to find work of any meaning as opportunities were rare and anything substantial that was on offer wasn't local.
Everything she tried to get off the ground stalled and any door that was opened quickly closed.

We were both frustrated and stressed out by our mutual circumstances and Kate was falling out of love with Scotland and was finding the Studio a very isolated place to live.

It had all become cold, dark and depressing and while I am relatively used to a Scottish winter, Kate found it intolerable.
We couldn't escape to the sun as I had an impending throat operation and so we were reduced to hibernating with nothing much to do except wait it out and hope for the best with too much time to think.

She wanted to return to London as she missed friends and family and the lifestyle and opportunities she had been used to.
Kate wanted financial security, which she felt she didn't have in Scotland. She wanted her own independent income and she wanted more interaction with life and people than she was getting up here. I genuinely felt for her and understood her needs but I couldn't do anything about it.

I knew what was coming.

I think her two visits down South, straddling Christmas, made up her mind and on New Year's day I knew she would not be coming back when she didn't return home for Hogmanay as planned.

Kate found a decent job very quickly which was used to validate her decision to me and I was left with very little choice but to accept she would be working and living in London.

I had hoped it would be a temporary situation but as the weeks went by it was obvious Kate thought otherwise.

Over the next months our communications were reduced to barrages of texts and emails as phone calls and conversations became difficult to maintain. Face to face meetings were close to impossible to arrange due to her work and other commitments and, when we did meet, everything was perfect until we parted and then we found ourselves with the same unresolved problems.

I tried to address some of the other issues she had with me such as my health and being more outgoing and proactive with my life by giving up smoking, getting to the gym, taking on and joining activity groups, etc.

It helped but it didn't solve our immediate problems which were distance and living apart with little or no time spent together.

Some things I couldn't deal with. I couldn't sell my studio and home and move to London as she wanted.

We couldn't find solutions and, as Kate didn't want to commute to her work from Edinburgh, we were left at an impasse.

With two very different lifestyles that would be extremely difficult to integrate - one a touring singer or actor with staggered but intense working periods and the other a full time physio/occupational therapist with rigid holiday times - and living 400 miles apart with restricted finances, it just didn't make any sense.

We couldn't find any solutions and in order to break out of this Mobius loop of heartache and pain I initiated a divorce in order to try and bring it to a close or to find a way forward.

All attempts to find a way out have failed and I am now resigned to the collapse of a marriage which lasted just over 6 months.

I had hoped that we could have met and sorted things out over the Easter weekend but it wasn't to be as Kate decided we were too far gone.
She was right.

It is so difficult for us, never mind anyone else who saw us last year, to understand and come to terms with how two people who were, and still are, so obviously in love with each other could come to this point and not be able to keep a marriage together but the realisation that we can't has torn us apart and we now have to accept that it's just not meant to be.

It's a horrible and painful reality for us both to deal with and no matter how we look at it, though it doesn't make any sense, it is as it is.

We have to let go of each other so that we can both move forwards in our lives.

Our wedding day in Croatia was the most beautiful, wonderful, romantic time I have ever had or will ever experience with someone and I have never felt so much in love with anyone as on that day on Galesnik.

I won't lose that memory for anything in the world and will cherish it forever.

I don't regret a thing.

We just couldn't make the marriage work and we will never truly know why.

No one is to blame and no one should be blamed.

I sincerely wish Kate nothing but the best and hope she finds everything she wants in her life, as I will always consider her a dear friend who will always hold a large piece of my heart.

For now we have to travel our separate paths but perhaps somewhere they might come together again, sometime in the future.

Who knows?

Just now it's sadness and we have to retire to heal on our own.

This chapter closes.

The book is eternally being written.


Derek

"drowning in the liquid seize on the Piccadilly line, rat race scuttling through the damp electric labyrinth"
 

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