April 3rd, 2010


(no subject)

Last night, driving through sunset Wairarapa, I was struck by a very strong feeling of nostalgia. There's something about the quality of the sunset light over there that reminds me of the life I used to live, in which that time of day was spent milking the cow, feeding the pig, running my dogs along the riverbank* - small chores of quietude in which I could spend time contemplating-while-doing, and getting pleasure from the simple act of 'taking care'. Doing these things made me feel very much a part of where I was, as if I were in the land, not on it.

These days, I feel I have lost that connection. I can feel the spokes in the wheel of the year here, but I'm watching them, not in them. When I get home in the evening, I either have some activity that involves driving somewhere and doing something with people, or I have nothing much to do at all. Mostly it doesn't bother me, but at times I feel the loss like a hole in my being, and there's a strong sense of yearning for those solitary pastoral activities in the sunset light. I have no call to go outside here, no daily routine that makes me part of the cycle.

I know I could go sit on a hill and contemplate my navel but I'm a practical soul and to me, deliberately looking for that is a bit like going to the gym for exercise - it does the job but it feels artificial, and has that aspect of 'keeping your spirituality in a church' that feels not-right about organised religion, and separates my being from the thing I'm after by virtue of the seeking rather than allowing.

Gah. Not making sense. But I am reminded of the reasons I moved to the city, the ultimate goal being to get to a place where I can have those things again. I love my life here, it's made shiny by the people and the opportunities for experience. But one day, I'll be back on that riverbank with my dogs and my soul will feel at home.

* I know I am romanticising. The cow was stroppy and her milk tasted funny, I was terrified of the pig, and the dogs used to enjoy swimming and then shaking their wet selves all over me. I worried about the grass and sometimes would have liked nothing better than to just get home and blob on the couch. Yet, here I am, remembering that stuff bathed in sunset, and I'm happy.

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The gig last night was fun - the ladies all got into it, had a go themselves, and we were home by 11pm. There may have been jokes about the Zombie Jesus Apocalypse that might have happened while we were away, and how we were hoping Dr Science might have commandeered the Cook Strait Ferry for us to escape in/battle Zombie Jesuses from.

Also, sheep. Rams are stinky. And now, bald.