Monday 18 August 2008
The other way
I walked along the canal the other way, which was quite different: no backs of houses and flats, but hedgerows with flowers and people picking blackberries, scrubby open land and small, shabby industrial buildings, more barge-dwellers, in scruffier boats on makeshift moorings. Only the still, dark water and the narrow concrete path the same, and another sunny day with storm clouds flitting over.
Change the frame and everything looks different. That's what I found, too, staying in another house most nights this past week or so, cat-sitting. Going from there to my office and other accustomed haunts, nothing felt quite the same: a small, quiet shaking up that made things lighter, less oppressive. We sink so deep in our daily ruts, the view out gets harder and harder to see. Enlightening.
It wasn't just this. It was the recent two-weeks retreat, which was my longest ever. I think it was also blurting out to friends the other day some bad, bad feelings that I never mention. That didn't seem a big deal, since I think those things every day. But something seems to have burst, a painful pressure diminished.
So, what with one thing and another, a lifting and opening of mood, more words, more life. There is even a small germ of a not-so-small plan for... well, let's see if it comes to anything. Who'd have thought?