How old are you? Twenty? Somewhere around thirty? Forty? I bet that during your lifetime you made a few crazy decisions. Got few secrets and strange, random facts which you could share and no one would expect that from you. Our personalities, our way of seeing the world and who we are have come from our experiences. I have plenty of moments in my life, enough to write another book or few. One of them is the history of Ed Sheeran and I
Raised in an unusual family.
I was born into a family with both parents deaf. I have six years older brother and we could say that we are totally opposite, but we somehow managed to get along. I remember my childhood as a blur of a few moments. My first language was a sign language. I do not remember learning it, but it was quite extraordinary – I could play music, shout and this did not bother my parents at all. My dad was amazing, he could recognise that something is not right with our car- a long time before I would notice – using only his hands, feeling vibrations on the steering wheel. Talent.
Hitchhiking as a favourite method of travelling.
Since I was 14 I preferred to hitchhike instead of travelling by train or bus. Any distance, any time of the year, with money for a bus or without. Sometimes I was getting bus fare from my parents, even then I was catching random drivers going in my desired direction. Quite often I had my cardboard piece in my backpack and a marker to write names of cities of my destinations.
I had a chance to meet very different people, been a passenger of many different vehicles – Cars, trucks, bin lorries, police cars, ambulances and even once I was sitting at the back of large …hearse with two bodies in the coffins.
I met many good people, some of them invited me to their homes, feed me, some bought tickets for an onward journey, some of those people became my friends. I also met – lets put it this way- few less nice people – I’ve been kidnapped and threatened, I was forced to get drunk with some people, I was mugged, lightly beaten up and experienced very weird situations, including gun threat. Some journeys were pretty crazy- I travelled for months across Europe, with no mobile phone, no contact with parents. Crazy times.
After secondary school, I went to high school but I wasn’t able to keep my focus and eventually I was expelled from my school and later on from another 4 in my borough. Eventually, I managed to somehow finish my education and get into uni, which kept me for less than 3 months. I was always occupied by other things, I just didn’t fit into standard education processes. In January of 2005, I came to the UK, lived in London, got married, had kids and later we moved to Scotland.
After the autism diagnosis of my son, I decided to go back to school. To chase my dream and get a better understanding of my children. I finished Early Education and Childcare as a Student of the Year and with SQA Highly Commended Award. Noe I would like to give back to society and I have now chance to support communities and families as Father and Child Wellbeing Worker at Children 1st and this is my dream work. I love it to bits as my organisation and team.
I am a fan of music, I play drums and guitars and I’ve used to play in metal/rock bands in Poland and in the UK. There is no one style I listen to. It’s a mix of everything, rap, pop, rock, blues, metal and anything which I can enjoy but I am a huge admirer of heavy guitar music and tattoos. What do I listen in my car? Alter Bridge, Slipknot, Ozzy, Jonathan Davis, Machine Head, Mastodon and my beloved Killswitch Engage.
I also got many tattoos and will be getting much more, in a hope to be tattooed from neck to toes. I don’t know why I love tatts so badly, I feel much completed with them. Also, it’s another reason to break stereotypes. Tattooed foreigner, working and supporting families, children and communities. Don’t judge the book by its cover.
Ed Sheeran and I
Here comes the story of Ed Sheeran and I!
A long time ago, I used to live in London, I worked in the kitchen in World’s End at Finsbury Park. We used to have open mike Sundays and guess what? Ed Sheeran used to run it, he was the main musician. He even lived for a short time upstairs in managers flat- next to my kitchen. We used to hang out after closing, drinking, talking. I even got his unofficial cd signed, it was a long time before he was known. We even had a few beers back then. Kal Lavelle also was living upstairs and she took over open mike/ gigs at the Worlds End. BTW I still got Ed’s Spare change sc signed by him- For Niko- with love. Ed. Cool eh?
For the past two years, I consider myself a minimalist. I rejected many things from my life and my surroundings which not adding value to my life. This doesn’t mean that I live like hermit and monk. We just reduced the consumption of goods, buying second-hand stuff when I need clothing or anything else. Things which were unused for more than 3 to 6 months were sold or donated.
I am also a nature lover. My dream is to lead a simple life in some remote location, be self-sufficient in terms of food, live in the best possible relationship with animals and visit towns when needed. For now, we are building our campervan to get some more travels behind our belt as soon this lockdown will be lifted. Being able to freely breathe, walk, touch the grass and breath in cleaner oxygen makes me happy, calm and turn my body into slow life mode.
Read more about minimalism and my road to stable mental health in here