Things had started to improve drastically for me and mum.
John Bailey at present wasn’t making any problems for us.
He had also dug his own grave in a roundabout way.
Graham Simpson had planned everything like a military operation and as a result, there was no way John could exploit the system again as he had done in the past.
John Bailey was all about abusing the system but to be fair in the environment he had grown up in you could hardly blame him.
It was extremely unlikely at best that he was going to start knuckling down to be a good citizen.
Having said that he knew the difference between right and wrong so a lot of his actions are inexcusable.
It’s one thing to empty the safe at insured jewellers but to hurt your own family just to score points against your ex is just fucked up no matter what way you look at it.
So Carol and Graham were dating and it seemed to be working well at first.
Graham was always working and loved being a solicitor. This was great for him but it didn’t leave a lot of time for anything else.
This is probably the main reason Carol and Graham split up after a year.
It was all amicable and there was no bad blood it had just run its course.
The time they were together Graham was always really nice to me and I was included in everything.
He didn’t try to step in and be a new dad he was just good to me.
I have dated a lot of girls who have had a child and I always did the same thing.
A lot of the time the dad didn’t want to know but still, I just tried my best to be nice.
One thing which breaks my heart and I’ve seen it many times even with girls I am not dating but a girl I know has kids. You give the kid the smallest amount of attention and they are suddenly your best friend.
The reason it’s heartbreaking is that you can see a lot of the time there is absolutely no positive male role model in the kid’s life.
So next thing you come along and you are your normal no bullshit lets have fun self and the kids are all over it.
One thing with kids is that they don’t miss anything and they can see straight through people good and bad.
Kids don’t miss anything and you can’t bullshit them whatsoever.
I feel modern children are losing this second sight now as they are now glued to screens of phones and I pads.
As a result, they end up locked in their cyber world and the world just carries on around them.
There are many studies that are currently in their infancy regarding the effects of too much screen time with children and how it can affect their development in a negative way.
I have enclosed so information in the links below but I feel that twenty years from now we will see many more issues all linked to this.
Luckily I grew up before the internet so I could figure a lot of these things out for myself and could see Graham was a nice guy.
We would spend a lot of time in his house and like myself, he was a big fan of 80s TV.
I know I was a kid but you don’t get better TV than back in the 80s. Granted it wasn’t very politically correct nor was it sensitive to anyone but these were the days before 7th place ribbons became a thing.
I remember he had every episode of Miami Vice on video as well and I started it from the very beginning.
So if I was in his house I was good as gold either watching children’s TV or Miami Vice what more could I want?
The show Miami Vice was set during the 80s and followed 2 undercover detectives Sonny Crocket and Ricardo Tubbs as they dismantled the underworld by themselves while driving a sports car on a cop’s salary.
They remade this into a movie in 2006 but was set in modern times and was more dark and gritty than the upbeat TV show.
The film was surprisingly very good and I’m surprised that no sequels came from it.
It was around this time Carol had got a new job as well which she could fit in around my school times and looking after me.
Graham had a friend who was also a solicitor who had been banned from driving as he was caught driving over the legal alcohol limit.
His name was Richard he had been convicted of this in the past so the courts threw the book at him.
He was banned for two years so Graham introduced them to each other and soon Carol was his driver.
From what I can remember he was a nice guy but like Graham was never happy unless he was working.
I think it must be a solicitor thing.
My friend and solicitor Richard Darby from Potter Derby solicitors is exactly the same.
He works every hour god sends but by choice. It’s just as well that he isn’t scared of work as he is very popular.
If you in a spot of trouble there is nobody better to have in your corner. He helped me out of a very difficult situation in 2013.
I will talk about this in detail in later blogs but he was amazing.
He has offices in Liverpool, St Helen’s, and London I’ve added the web page below in case anyone needs it.
You will probably laugh at this and think well it won’t happen to me but when it does happen there is no worse feeling so don’t rule it out.
So Mum would pick me up from school then take me home and feed me. She would then go on to pick up Richard (not Darby) and usually, we would sit in the car and wait for him for about thirty minutes.
It’s sod’s law that he would be walking out the door and the phone would ring. This was in the prehistoric days before mobile phones so he would have to take it.
In true lawyer fashion as well he would be thinking to himself I’m only doing a 70 hour week ill easily fit in another case.
There were mobile phones at the time but they cost thousands. The picture below shows Gordon Gecko from the movie wall street.
This phone took 24 hours to charge and it had a battery life of two hours.
My pal tried to buy one a few years ago and the cheapest price he could find was a thousand pounds so he gave it a miss.
So we would take Richard home if I remember rightly was in Runcorn then we would either go home or go to see one of mum’s friends like Jill or Nicky Jones and Terry Canning who were both still together at the time.
At the weekends we would do some nice stuff together.
Me Graham and Carol would go on these long nature walks in places like York and Morcombe.
We would walk for hours and find a nice pub to have lunch in then drive back exhausted.
I wish I was at home writing this as I have some pictures of this and this was the healthy energy I needed in my life and I had started to forget the chaos that John had left behind.
I could usually persuade Graham and mum to stop at the video shop on the way home as they knew that would be me quiet for the next few hours glued to the screen.
Another reason I loved going to Grahams is he had a VHS video player. Most of you who are old enough to remember videotapes will know VHS but will have no recollection of Betamax.
Betamax was another form of video and it was in direct competition with VHS. You could not play the tapes on the wrong machine so when you went to the video shop there were two sections VHS and Betamax.
Obviously, VHS won the war and the Betamax but this went on for years. The Betamax section in the video shop got smaller and smaller and eventually, it became obsolete.
The same thing happened years later with VHS and DVD.
It’s surprising that VHS won as the quality of their tapes wasn’t nearly as good as Betamax but they had a better marketing team and as a result, they stayed around for a long time after the Betamax demise.
The tech war between these two could have really gone either way as they were both huge companies competing for the entire market.
I remember being a kid and John Bailey had just come back from doing a job and he was walking upstairs with something that to me looked like had just come off the space shuttle.
Dad, what’s that?
It’s a Betamax son
What’s a Betamax dad?
It so we can watch movies and collect movies
So we don’t have to wait for movies to come on the TV anymore?
No there’s a shop where they will rent us movies.
Are you telling fibs dad that sounds silly who would have hundreds of films on standby for people to borrow?
I’m not joking son ill take you tomorrow
Hmmm ok, ill believe it when I see it.
Dad, I was speaking to Billy Riley yesterday and he has something called a VHS is this the same?
My dad starts laughing.
No son this is way better than VHS and I’ve got a mate who let us in the back of the factory where they make these and he told me himself that Betamax is well better and they will be the ones left.
I then was really excited to meet the man who had hundreds of films for me to choose from.
To be fair to John Bailey he took me to this new magical shop the next day and in the evening we all watched escape from Alcatraz together. A great timeless movie and a true story.
I’ve enclosed a fantastic article which speaks about this war in detail below check it out its a very interesting read especially if you are a dinosaur like me.
Unfortunately, nothing lasts forever and Graham and Carol eventually split up. There was no bad blood and it had just run its course.
They remained friends but it was a lot harder to keep in touch back in those days before the invention of mobiles and social media.
However, when they did see each other it was never awkward and there was no problem for Carol to continue working for Graham’s friend Richard.
Life went on as normal and for a while, things were a little too quiet.
John Bailey had not shown his face for over a year and then decided out the blue to turn up at my school.
The last memories I had of him were all of the fucked up things I spoke about in the last blog.
Now considering all of the vile stuff he was trying to poison me with against Carol had not happened in the year he had been gone I must have figured out subconsciously that this was all his actions.
Obviously, I could not make such a conclusion as a kid but I knew in my own head he was the instigator.
He shouted me over to the gate when it was lunchtime and I saw him and panicked.
He seemed really eager for me to go over there but I didn’t know how to react.
He never laid a hand on me my whole life but at this time I didn’t know that and I had seen the damage he had caused and all for his own gain.
I panicked and ran away from him I ran over to tell the teacher and he saw this got back in his car then sped off into the distance like Sterling Moss.
I told Mum about this who informed the police so it was all recorded and then John in his own mind started to twist things.
Instead again of looking at his role in all this he would claim that Carol had tried to poison me.
In his own jaded mind, he was the loving father and Carol was the big bad wolf so now He had an excuse to score drugs, and also he had to get revenge.
He did just that we came home from Jill Jones house one day and the flat had been burgled.
He had trashed the place and took a lot of jewellery and a few other items.
For John, this was the gift that kept on giving he could sell the stuff and get high and he could also intimidate his ex and win another pointless victory.
He even trashed my room to try and divert suspicion away from himself. he never broke any of my stuff but the room was completely trashed.
Also, he was looking to see if Carol had stashed any money in there…… Wow, what money?
He also left a very threatening note which had the desired effect.
Now John wasn’t totally stupid he didn’t sign it and the police yet again not wanting to do any police work said they didn’t have enough evidence to question him, after all, why would he trash his son’s room?
The only good thing to come from all this was Carol had become financially solvent from working full time for Richard and she had house insurance.
She was due a big payout from all the stuff that was missing and a lot of the stuff like the TV and a few other bits were replaced by friends who had spares.
The insurance money came through fast and now it was a case of what to do with the money?