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Today's quote:

Sunday, October 23, 2022

The treacherous “if only” mind that haunts us all


Before Time forecloses all possibilities, as Time always ultimately does, I for just one more time want to break out from this tedium of life-as-it-is, to shake off the shackles that remind me of who I am, to shed the self my friends know me by, and to dissolve my identity in strange new places amongst anonymous strangers.

Losing myself in order to finding myself! The word "lost" comes from the old Norse word los, meaning the disbanding of an army, and this origin suggests soldiers falling out of formation to go home, a truce with the wide world. Many people never disband their armies, never go beyond what they know. These days, even children seldom roam, even in the safest places. Because of their parents' fear of the monstrous things that might happen, the wonderful things that would happen as a matter of course are stripped away from them. My unbridled childhood roaming developed my self-reliance, a sense of adventure, imagination, a will to explore, to be able to get a little lost and then find my way back again.

A very long time ago, close on thirty years now, before I got "settled" (?) here at "Riverbend", I would've bought myself a ticket to a new place long before I even had time to formulate these thoughts, so as to lose myself in new places amongst different people, perhaps even in new countries amongst different races, in order to find myself again.

This wanting and waiting for something in life starts innocently enough - awaiting my birthday (which was never celebrated), the new bicycle (which I never got), awaiting the school year to end, or to begin (which was the situation with me; I told you I was a bit weird, didn't I?); then the waiting for the BIG breaks, the first love, the first job, then the next, bigger, job, always going through life expecting the next moment to contain what this one does not. To complete this life-as-it-could-have-been, I want to break out one more time before I run out of Time.

And so we - it's no longer a simple "I" but a more complicated "we" - have decided to put "Riverbend" on the market next year, buy a small EURO-caravan and a decent-sized car to tow it with, and go TRAVELLING NORTH, just like in David Williamson's play which ends differently from the movie - and more appropriately, I think - with Saul asking Frances, "Do you think you will go back down to your family?", and Frances replying, "No, I think somehow that I'll go travelling further north."

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