It was way back in 1969 that I started having the feeling that I wanted to speak to audiences. I took this to indicate a talent for politics and this was confirmed by a letter from Jakarta a little later. So I gave up my job with the Inland Revenue Surtax Office where – in those days – the UK rich were taxed at a top rate of 97.5%, and I went to work in Oxford as the Liberal party agent.
A Subud brother, Simon Caradoc Evans, was standing as the Liberal Party candidate in North Berkshire and invited me to help. We lost our deposit! Nuff said! Sounds like a typical Subud undertaking!
Living in a Nightmare
My mother’s serious mental illness killed off that dream and I had to return home to Warrington in 1972 to take care of her. She would literally not eat and refused medical help so I had to lace her nightly Horlicks with Complan (a powdered food full of vitamins) and try to surrender it.
Luckily my expertise in Taxation got me a job in Manchester with Grant Thornton and I commuted the 40 mile round trip for the next 8 years. To say that this period of my life was like living in hell is to diminish the nightmare that it was. One day in 1980, I could take it no more. I drove to the Liverpool Subud House and fell to my knees in the empty latihan hall. ‘Father, I can carry this cross not another step!’ I called out – at last able to totally surrender. She died within 36 hours.
The Arab Connection
I then cast caution to the wind, bought a caravan and an old London Black Taxi and set off south to work as close as I could to what became the Anugraha project. I wanted to help. By all kinds of magic, the only 2 paid jobs in Subud were offered to me on the same day, and later I was asked to join the Anugraha team and became the Company Secretary of that Titanic like enterprise.
From 1986 onwards I have worked for Arabs. There are some 12 great trading families in Saudi Arabia and I was taken on in a humble capacity by one of them. I stayed looking after their palatial country estate near Heathrow for 18 years and during that time their daughter married into the Bin Laden family – the one that was to become famous after 9/II. When they sold the house in 2004 I was asked by the daughter’s husband if I would like to work for him and I am happy to be so doing for such an honourable and honest man.
An Eligible Bachelor Finds a Woman
All this time I had been alone – making a complete hash of every attempt to lose my bachelor status. Sachlan Fraval referred to me once as ‘the most eligible bachelor in Subud’, but it did not seem to make much difference.
By 2008 I was getting desperate, to put it mildly. In a way, like that day in the Liverpool Subud House, I called out one night to ask in a ‘Why has thou foresaken me’ moment. Two days later I was looking at a very pretty lady scientist on an International Dating agency website on my PC.
She is Romanian and lives with her immortal 97 vear old aunt in a small flat in Bucharest. I did not appreciate when I clicked my mouse in her direction where it was going to lead me. After some months of emails I arrived at the airport into Bucharest, knees knocking, heart pounding. She told me later that she was so excited that she took tranquillisers before coming to meet me.
I have now made six visits in all to Romania and have travelled extensively. We love each other very deeply and I have come to love Romania – not the land of Gypsy beggars as some might think, but a very religious, friendly people. They are still blinking in the bright light of freedom since Christmas Day 1989 when they executed their hated dictator Ceausescu, lifting the dark shadow of communism which had fallen across their country in 1945.
A Beautiful Country Involved in War
This beautiful country has been invaded by almost every nation in Europe at one time or another, whilst during the Second World War it had the dubious honour of being bombed by the Americans and the Germans! They wanted to make peace in 1944, so Hitler bombed Bucharest and Romania declared war on Germany. This changed history and shortened that great war by six months.
I have a great sense of humour and had got into the habit of telling funny stories in video clips on Youtube. I had several hundred by this time. One day, in a hotel in the far north of Romania in 2010, I made a clip about Romania. Suddenly I had this uplifting feeling that here was a way of ‘talking to audiences’ about politics and have made over 100 clips in similar vein since.
Unity and Strength
It came to me one day that for 2000 years we Europeans have butchered each other by the millions – maybe as many as 100 million have died needlessly. For most Europeans, Hitler was the last straw and they decided to make war within Europe impossible in the future by locking everyone into the dream of a United Europe and so today 27 countries participate in the EU.
God Willing, we may now have 2000 years of peace ahead of us, during which we may rebuild Europe into the greatest power for good on earth. Do not forget that it’s GDP is almost equal to that of the USA and China combined – a staggering statistic!
I am ashamed of the way Britain has pussyfooted and shilly-shallied around the edge of Europe like a delicate damsel on her honeymoon night. It is time to stop insisting that we be allowed to play golf with a different sized ball to everyone else!
To this end I have been making little broadcasts on subjects like the Schengen Treaty and the Euro. Whilst most commentators here have been prophesying gloomily that Europe was disintegrating, I have felt to oppose them with all my strength.
Surrender only to God
The little Englanders are actually succeeding in keeping us just that – little! This morning I awoke with the words ‘United States of Europe’ on my lips and knew at once what I have to do. I shall start by building a website www.useu.net to attract all those with a similar dream.
I don’t know if it is significant but whilst typing this article the postman delivered a letter to me from 10 Downing Street – responding no doubt, to one of many complaints about our pathetic insularity! So, at the age of 70 I am at last coming to grips with my talent. Never give up or give in.
Never surrender, save to Almighty God ! Tally Ho!