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There's No Drinking After You're Dead - James Walsh

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What’s it all about eh? No, not the book; I’ll get onto that in a bit. No. What’s life all about? It’s a complicated business, with no simple answer. An all too brief journey from the cradle to the grave; living; and learning. Taking part; and observing. Interacting with others. Taking time for ourselves. Constantly making decisions and choices; right and wrong. Giving; our time, our love, our knowledge, ourselves; and taking; those things from others. And that’s just a tiny bit of it, over simplified; and yet all of it too. What we learn; and how we use what we learn, as we grow and develop, shapes who we are, and who we become. Our memories and experiences are keys that unlock our progress in life. The truth of who we are, shaped by the truth of who we have been. Birth; a loving family; siblings maybe; school days, ‘the best years of your life’; university perhaps; work; romance; love; marriage; home; kids; health, wealth and happiness; stability; holidays; retirement; grandchildren; old age; death. Bloody marvellous; and so far from reality for most as to be total nonsense. And what is this ‘truth’ we learn from? Our memory holds very little ‘truth’; and what there is, is reshaped in our minds, in order that it will fit in with the choices and decisions that we make; so that it will sit nicely with the paths we choose to follow. Life’s a complicated business.

So, the book; what’s the book all about? It’s all about life; the life of one man; Billy Hunt. It’s the truth of his life. The truth of how his experiences shaped his choices. The truth that lead him to be so many different people, all at the same time; Husband; Father; Author; Drunk; Womaniser. The truth of how he came to be so wealthy; and so unhappy. The truth of why he continues to hurt those closest to him; and why they continue to love him the most. And it’s the truth of why he’s now ready to die by his own hand. Life, and the truth of life, raises more questions than it gives answers, for some; and Billy was definitely one to whom that applies. Billy seemingly has it all, yet continues to look for ‘it’ elsewhere; ‘the grass is always greener’ Billy. Billy’s truth is blurred and embellished. Billy’s truth is contradictory and self-destructive. This book is Billy’s life. This book is Billy’s truth.

Life’s a complicated business; and there’s no drinking after you’re dead!

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