'My mind is frazzled by work stress. How do I give my brain a break? Please don't say yoga' bit hysterically giggles my friend.
I am the same, dear. I am writing a piece for a client at 2am on a Sunday, fretful and haggard. My diary says there are also Tax Returns to be submitted, emails to be answered, affairs to be filed, and the way around the house to be cleared. Do I have a time to visit a friend in the countryside? I wish.
At this rate I notice that anxiety becomes my constant companion. But this is how we live in 2017, mere mortals. There is more work to be done, more fun to be had, more things to see, read and hear, and so, obviously, more things to harass our vulnerable brains. Ironically, there are more things to remedy such mental bustle. So yes, baby, yoga. Breathing and balance exercise tends to calm your system down and enhance memory, and bananas help with concentration and problem solving, hehe.
It took me three weeks to take this train. The train that brings me to botanical gardens and the zoo where most animals walk 'free'. 20 minutes away from where I live, took me three weeks. When I finally got on the train, I found myself editing my recent photography work, instead of looking through the window to see how season changed... With this realisation I switch off my phone.
As soon as I get to the gardens, I take out a blanket and sit down under the big tall tree with my back against its trunk. No one is here. I listen to a gentle conversation of birds and watch the leaves fall. Dance, to occasional gust. I inhale rich moisture into my lungs and talk myself into the present wonder moment. Peace finds its way back pretty instantly, thanks to hardly established meditation routine. I close my eyes, inhale deeply again, and Gratitude expands within my whole essence. I let go of tension. I let go of thoughts. I just be. Part of the tree. And it's so good. The time slows down. And then it disappears, like it never was. Like it never meant to be.
I met a friend the other day, which after many years living in the city moved to the countryside. 'How do you find it?' I ask. 'I love it. I feel like I arrived home, or something between those lines. The city is cool, but nature is who we are' he said, and this now doesn't leave my mind.
Autumn is very fresh in Ireland. Next time you here, ask someone to take you out to the woods, some place with a waterfall, giant ferns and low palm trees. And a carpet of yellow soft leaves. The moisture is exceptionally rich in those places. Imagine. Its velvet scents: deep wet, dry wet, of nuts, mushrooms, floral scent. I smell floral one right now, I look around and find it's coming from the bush with flowers that look like lilies, though they are size of a nail. Pity I can't read the name of this plant, as the label is all wash out by the rain.
I always wonder how does the bottom of the sea smells like...
Oh! A squirrel just crossed my path!
I leave some nuts on the branch of a tree.
I like that in autumn and winter this park is left alone to be. No one tries to put plants into perfect shape. They leave them hibernate. I love the idea of 'hibernation'. I hope to come to a chapter in my life where I let myself hibernate somewhere under the Nordic sky. Wrapped up in Irish wool, in proper winter shoes, with Husky or two, walk the Earth for 2 months... mmm
Next I meet a man who is setting up way marks, for some young scouts will be coming here tomorrow. He shows me on the compass where we are, and says this park looks most beautiful once the sun starts settling down. So I decide to wait for the dusk, if it won't get too cold. As this gorgeous velvet moisture can slip under your skin pretty fast. 'Weather is so unpredictable in Ireland, just like women' one my friend jokes. Temperature might change during a day a good few times. I became an expert of how to layer up clothes that it'll be easy to take them off if gets warm, and put them back on when gets cold.
Just before dusk, the sun comes out. And it stays till the clouds start gathering to cover the sky, which is orange and red and burning yellow colour right now. The clouds change their shapes in 3D. And the birds fly across and the leaves fall and floral moisture keeps purifying my slightly tired soul. I sit down on the bench and a little bird comes to greet me, good news he brings, as people say in this case back in my homeland. And I'm glad, I love the good news! I know it brings change; the shift is happening again, big choice I am facing again, besides little ones every day, and I'm learning to choose very well. Except that 'busy' lifestyle got me back smoking again :(
'But tell me, how do we manage all?' yesterday I asked a guy at the pool I go swimming.
'We don't. There will be things you'll do, and things that you won't' he said. And he is so right.
It's good here in this silent park. You hear your soul talk again.
Clouds shape castles far away, and at the same time - so close...
That is how I live here and now.
Relaxing sounds call winter bells upon...
Have a wonder full festive time.
...I mark this letter to Leo as 'Private'...
You gotta play your favourite games!