If we were having coffee right now we would probably be discussing the quality of the coffee. Being a decaf drinker but still liking my coffee to be a stiff drink, I would be giving you my take on its taste and aroma.
If we were having coffee right now I would be sharing with you my joy of the weather we are having. How it brings back cherished memories of other Septembers when the weather was similar and we were all having fun haymaking.
If we were having coffee right now we would be chatting about how my packing is coming along and whether I am still calm and organised or beginning to quake under the strain. We would be discussing ways we would keep in touch with one another when I move and when I would be likely to return to visit.
If we were having coffee right now I would be enthusing about my imminent move and what my plans were for my immediate future. We would chat about what you were going to do with your time over the coming winter months and ways you too could move to a warmer climate.
If we were having coffee right now we would be looking out of the window watching the tourists wandering aimlessly around and chat about the impending quietness the end of season brings.
“When I was younger I used to go for drives in the car to try and get lost, just to see where it took me, where I would end up. It was an adventure to see somewhere different, somethings I hadn’t seen before. It was exciting.”
“If you keep using the map or worse still your satnav, looking outside of yourself for directions, you’ll never learn to trust your own guidance system.”
“It’s inbuilt you know, we’ve all got one. No one was left out when they were dishing guidance systems out.”
“But what if we get lost?”
“Well, that’s just another illusion. It is just a state of mind. We cannot get lost. We just think we can or we just think we are.”
“That’s stupid, if I am not familiar with my surroundings and don’t know which way to turn that’s lost in my book.”
“I know that it can seem that way. But that’s because we have a tendency to identify with things, people, places outside of us. When we make a connection with these it makes us feel secure, stable. Generally the familiarity blocks out any feeling of being lost.”
“I don’t agree with that either! I had a friend who had a great family, really supportive they were and all she forever went on about was how lost and alone she felt. Her familiar surroundings and people didn’t block out her feelings of being lost!”
“Each of us in life walks a unique path, alone. No one can walk it for us. Yet, at the same time we cannot ever be truly alone. We are all connected to one another whether we like it or not. A bit like the cells in our bodies. Each has its own identity but functions as part of the whole.”
“When we look within for that stability, our inner connection, we can still enjoy those connections we perceive as outside of us, but in a more fulfilling way. But when we try to resolve concerns our through our conventional conditioned route, a part of us pulls away from the inner secure complete self and a state of imbalance occurs. This causes an emotional reaction and with that reaction there is then a tendency to seek outside with even more intent to find something, and find it quickly to ease the pain of separation, loneliness, being lost.
“We are lost. But only from ourselves. We are always with ourselves. We cannot not be with ourselves, ever.”
“But I’m frightened, what if there’s something out there I should be aware of that’s not good OR, something, an opportunity that I might miss.”
“Well you’re sure to miss it if you try to engineer it.”
“Just try it, humour me. Put the map down, set off and enjoy sensing where you are going.”
“I always knew you were mad! But you are my treasured friend, I trust you. So just for this journey, I’ll humour you.”
Most people who currently know me have no idea that I was wild when I was younger. I did everything at break-neck speed. For me slow meant old. I had to get wherever I was going yesterday. I was full of life and mischief, with boundless energy.
I used to run as fast as my legs would take me, cutting corners on country lanes to shorten the journey time to wherever I was going. I was usually a lot faster going home for fear of being grounded.
When I started using a bicycle I would pedal that as fast as I could too.
Later on when I got my first car, which was ancient as my dad wouldn’t let me buy anything modern, I can remember driving down a steep hill, my foot flat to the floor, overtaking everyone in sight. As I passed them I glanced over my shoulder before I moved back into the inside lane and caught a glimpse of the driver looking at me aghast. I must have looked a rare sight as you didn’t see cars that old travelling quickly.
I wasn’t allowed to have a motorbike but when I turned 18, I sold my car and bought one, much to my parent’s horror. Needless to say, I wrung its neck everywhere I went.
I only fell off once, well when I was moving! I seemed to fall off regularly when I was stationary. Something to do with not being able to perform in front of a crowd.
The one time I fell off moving was down our driveway. I always used to arrive like a maniac, probably to annoy my mother who was always determined to bring a halt to any form of fun. This particular day it backfired on me. My dad had been mixing concrete and there was a residue of sand outside the back door. I came along like a bat out of hell, locked up all wheels, the bike when down and me with it as we slid past the back door and into the garage. Makes me laugh just thinking about it. It must have looked like something from a cartoon strip.
I can picture it now, low flying wayward daughter, manic mother clad in pinny (apron), bounding out of the kitchen door ranting at me. It hurt like hell (I only had office quality trousers on) and the last thing I needed was a violent earbashing. After that I always wore thick jeans and bought a bigger, faster bike!
I always leave them in the hope they will. You never know, one day …
And I don’t believe in using dish washers (well the non-people kind). I had a phone call from the local energy trust regarding saving energy. Now I am pretty sure you can’t save much more than I do. Well maybe putting a fourth layer on top of the already cumbersome three layers may help a bit, but come on, my soul is almost smothered into extinction during the winter months with 3 layers a fourth is beyond acceptable.
So we discussed all sorts of ways I use energy and the dishwasher came up for discussion. I expressed my perspective and was shot down in flames for not having one. He told me that I would save more energy and do less damage to the environment if I had a dishwasher. I told him I agreed and would insist in future in cajoling the next human through the door via the kitchen sink.
I don’t think he appreciated my humour.
I offered to be put to the test – I did not believe that if I lived to the grand old age of one hundred and washed up as often as I do that I could justify the damage to the environment caused by the mining, manufacturing, construction, transportation, maintenance, running costs and pollution.
Amazingly, he believed he had sufficient statistics to prove me wrong. It was at that point that we parted company.
Now, where was I?
I had come to believe that soapboxes were a thing of my past!
I am not a fan of housework generally, I can always think of something more interesting to do, however, my home is always clean and reasonably tidy. I really don’t like to create work for myself.
I used to loathe ironing but developed the art of buying clothes that needed less ironing and making sure I hung them up to dry, preferably outside. It’s amazing how well nature shakes and flaps the creases out of the fabric. When summer finally arrives it is impossible to avoid the iron, but I had an epiphany one day and decided that in order to enjoy a job I hated I would find a way to make it acceptable. So I selected some peaceful music to listen to, and whilst I ironed, I flattened out all the creases in my life.
I could have become carried away with enthusiasm for the task but winter returned and out came the thick jumpers again.