The big stuff: definitely. Absolutely.
I did. Some of the stuff that was going on in the dressing room meant I didn't want to be there. I still produced the results on the field, because I felt incredibly free when I was batting. I loved it; I loved batting.
I'm 34 and my knee has had a brilliant rest now. So I'm ready to play again. I'm sure people will refer to me as a former player, but I'm still playing tournaments around the world and I will continue to do so for a good few years. I'm still young and fresh and I still love batting.
It feels 100%. It feels amazing. I haven't played a Test on it, of course, but I don't have any pain on it.
Two things: it's been brilliant for my knee that I've had the opportunity to rest. And another thing: if I'd scored 10 million runs for Surrey this summer, would I have been selected?
They've been under pressure for a lot of things, but they haven't buckled. They still might, I suppose. Look, maybe, it's a fair argument. I can see your point. I do need to sit down and discuss what direction my cricket goes in next year. Because I didn't play well for Surrey this year. Playing once a week just doesn't work in T20 cricket. It might if it was Championship cricket, but I'm not going to play T20 just once a week. I have to commit to four-day cricket and being around cricket a lot more if I want to be successful. And I set myself such high standards. I felt I let down Graham Ford, I let down Surrey, I let down the lads in the dressing room, and I was heartbroken about it.
Absolutely. My mentor is at Surrey. I love the guys in the dressing room. They're a brilliant club and I have such a great relationship with all the players. If I wasn't playing this summer, I would pop down there with my little boy. I'd play cricket on the outfield, I'd go and see the lads in the dressing room. It's such a great environment. I love that place. But I have to discuss what my future holds in the next month or so.
(Exhales. Long pause) I can only answer that by saying that I love England. I love what this country has given me. I only know one route. And it's been the most incredible journey. I've achieved so much with the England team. I've played with some brilliant players. I've achieved some stuff personally that I'm incredibly proud of. So it's a question that I don't find relevant, as this is the route I took, this is my life. I don't have any regrets because I love England.
I needed to bring up that issue. It wasn't a nice environment. Guys were picked on big time. Some other players will come out eventually and say the same thing.
I've had my character assassinated on a regular basis ever since the captaincy went. So I've had to come out now and say what happened. I'm proud of the book. I'll go to bed tonight and I'll sleep brilliantly. I stand by the book.
No. Never. But I know what you're getting at. You're talking about James Taylor. Because there's this lie out there that I rubbished him in front of the team. It's not true. I spoke to Andy Flower about him. It was a private conversation. It was a senior player talking to the coach in private. I expressed my views when asked. To have private conversations turned into a media story on Monday morning that I was ridiculing James Taylor in the dressing room is ridiculous. Has anyone bothered to ask him if it's true?
Well, there you are then. He's clearly an honest lad. Look, I had some pretty good ideas. I was a senior player. I had captained various teams. I had played right around the world. And I wanted the best for England cricket. So the coach might have asked my opinion. So I expressed my views - and sometimes he hated them. But I was isolated, and private conversations became newspaper stories.
"I came to England as an offspinner who didn't know how to bat and I became England's greatest ever run scorer. So I live in hope"Pietersen on his chances of playing for England again
No, no. Why would I do that? It's a ridiculous story. The only issue was with my knee. I almost didn't play in that Test. My knee was really hurting. I was batting the day before the Test and I walked out of the nets and told Andy that I was really struggling. I called the physio over. But that's not the same as trying to quit a tour, is it?
Today? Right now? (Laughs) Well, I look at it like this: I came to England as an offspinner who didn't know how to bat and I became England's greatest ever run scorer. So I live in hope.
No, it was an issue. You don't talk about micro-fracture surgery unless you really need it.
Maybe, yes. I've made some mistakes. I've said some things I shouldn't have said. And yes, I've been too honest. But should I have been sacked for it? Michael Vaughan wrote a good piece, a balanced piece which isn't just pro-me, about man-management. English cricket wouldn't be where it is today if it had been managed well in the last five or six years.
Success papers over a lot of cracks.
The Mood Hoover? He had a fantastic team. But he used to walk into the room and it was like "Uhhh". He would walk into breakfast and it was like "uhhh".
Yes. Though he isn't actually coach now.
Yes! One of my questions to Paul Downton is: if I seemed disinterested, why did I?
No, no. I said I had a great relationship with them. I did. I had a great relationship with Alastair Cook. We were open and honest with each other and I had no issues. We had a discussion before the Sydney Test and I said, "Cooky, you know that I'm here to help you. But I've played over 100 Tests and I'm allowed an opinion." And he said "Absolutely".
I'd love to ask him that. I've messages on my phone from him saying we'll hook up when he got back from Australia. But it never happened. The next time I saw him was in that meeting where he was staring at his feet.
It's been hugely difficult to deal with. I've trained my brain to accept that everything happens for a reason. I was probably in mourning for a while, but I'm pretty much at peace now. I still play, I still travel and have fun. I drop off my kid at school.
This was not a life-changing sum of money for me, it wasn't about that. I deserved a chance to give my side of the story. My character has been assassinated for years and I have never defended myself. Under Andy Flower's regime, if you did anything that wasn't the way he liked it, he came down on you hard. I wasn't allowed to defend myself.
Never. It was never okay. Not even on that first tour. I really did try. But I always knew he had it in for me.
Well, I did captain guys like me in the IPL. Free spirits. My theory is, you set out the guidelines of the team and you find out how individuals like to run. And there are certain individuals that need to be treated differently to others. Some need to play warm-up games and spend time in the nets. Some need to be put under pressure; some need to be taken away from pressure because of the amount of pressure that is thrust upon them in the international environment. You have to understand those players and manage them carefully and to your advantage. Don't use them against you.
You have to be. After the level of abuse I've had, you have to be. I have a close circle of friends. I have my family. I've been bombarded for about five years and now I am totally cool about it.
No, there wasn't. The ECB gave me a letter with questions on it about my thoughts about the team. I spent a long time drawing up answers. We were due to have a board meeting, but it was leaked and I was sacked. I thought I had the majority with me: Strauss and Collingwood were in my corner. But what I said - that I couldn't take the team further with him as coach - didn't go down very well. And that's where the spiral started.
The most exciting thing I have going on at present is my foundation and academy in Dubai. I have a really exciting programme for the kids: it will be the best cricket academy in the world. I will be hands-on. I'll be there at least four times a year and I'll be giving masterclasses. I have friends such as Chris Gayle and Yuvraj Singh coming to give masterclasses too.
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo