"After Puckoon I swore I would never write another novel. This is it."
I have used this quote once before in a Blog, but it is so appropriate to the situation in which I now find myself I just had to use it again. When I stopped writing this Blog on 31 July 2015 I did so on the basis that I had insufficient time to continue writing regularly, and of course there were some critics out there who thought I was past it anyway. Perhaps the latter is true ... but I am of an age where I don't actually care! What does make me humbled and energised to give it another go are the continued notes I have received from a wide variety of people, some of whom I never knew read the Blog or were even aware of it, that have asked if I would reconsider, and write again.This has become especially true during the last few months, and I have found myself writing longish emails to a variety of people who have asked for a view on this or that.
And on that particular point I must reiterate something I have always maintained, which is I am not an "expert" on anything in particular. Sure I've been around, go to many places, and have an opportunity to meet many different people from all walks and at all levels of life. I guess it gives me a perspective that happily I share and in which some people are interested.
When I stopped writing I was putting in a few more hours on work than perhaps I should have been - depending on who you listened to ... and I had suffered from a powerfully debilitating virus (all now long gone) that had left me a tad drained. And, frankly I was getting fed up with the world.
Fast forward to today and guess what, I am actually doing more than I was doing even back then. I am even more involved in business in the Middle East than I was and in more countries, although for the avoidance of doubt I am still very resident in Hong Kong. I also have increased my involvement with a couple of roles in Hong Kong.
The upshot of all this is that after quite a number of weeks of debate about whether I can/should/want to do this all over again I have decided to give it a go and see what happens. There is, after all, much to concern us all - and it is not just a regional thing, it is global.Where does Asia go from here; remember that Asia, as if you would forget, is just not all about China. Asia is huge, young (in most places) and growing. Europe is not exactly dead yet, but seems to need some serious surgery and one has to question whether the "doctors" are up to it. North America - okay, the USA - is currently an unknown quantity and the world is holding its breath to see what happens next - while Russia and China seem to be making the most of uncertainty - and are a lot stronger than they used to be. Latin America, where I spent a few weeks in the latter part of this year (happily on vacation), has continuing political problems but some bright spots in some of its economies.
But as always it is a matter of perspective. I have always liked the quote from English author George Eliot (1819-1880), when she wrote "It is a narrow mind which cannot look at a subject from various points of view." It is one of the issues particularly I feel of a generation younger than mine that seeks instant news, and takes what it receives as the final word even if it is a view from a few, without it being properly and widely aired. This, of course, is a generalisation but for my part I will continue to try and bring perspective to what I write, even if I do express a personal point of view.
This last year, 2016, in the Chinese Zodiac has been the year of the monkey. And what a mischievous little brute he has turned out to be. I hope that 2017 and the Year of the Rooster will be better.
Happy New Year.