A rambling post aiming to do nothin other than to put thoughts into words. A post worthy of a digestive biscuit or two, a dark roast coffee or an ale of equality dark tones to be enjoyed slowly in the hope that the ramblings that follow make sense, touch a chord or even stir an emotion.
A word often used in teaching….
Defined as a strong belief that something will happen or be the case or mathematically speaking, an expected value. In teaching it refers to what a teacher or member of staff wants to see from the behaviour and attitude of a student and now, knowing how long I am to stay static… Pinned to this location until certain events take place, I find that I am reevaluating my expectations of what this adventure would be.
I expected physical hardship, mental challenges based on those you would expect of endurance events and the continual act of showing resilience. The reality is something else. I’m struggling to grasp exactly what the reality of it is. The aspects I expected are there, as accent notes found in the scent chord of a fine perfume, but the base nite is allusive. Each time I feel like I have a grasp of it or I detect it’s true shape and colour, it seems to vanish. A shadow without a light source is just another section of the darkness.
Being static, I feel like I’m getting further and further away from the ghost I’ve been chasing. I make plans in my head about what I will do to redeem my loss of distance, to payback the pause in motion and to ‘bridge the gap’ (a buzz term in teaching at the moment) between my expectations and the reality of what I amwandering through.
You might notice… You might not…
That I didn’t use the word what lies ahead. This is an odd thing to me. I understand the concept but to experience it and find yourself separated from the crowds around you because of it is strange. I don’t seem to be able to see the future of this… This beast of stupidity cultivation.
I can only focus on now.
‘When will you finish?’
A question thrown at me when anyone finds out what I am doing.
‘Seven months was the plan so February’
But as I speak the words I feel like I should stop. The real answer is ‘when I reach the post in Saracusa that points north and boldly proclaims the direction and distance to Nordkapp’
But I feel like time is slipping away, and by that I mean that I am delaying the final act of this story. Decision to rest, to wait for equipment, to divert for food…
All are robbing me and others of the next page of the story… A doorbell ringing when you are in the midst of a sentence. An alarm clock buzzin when you are about to see the final act of a dream.
I question whether I could have done this better and the answer is yes, although by changing any aspect of the initial choice, the other parameters alter so the circumstances would all be different, and in this fact lies the truth that the question ‘could I have done this better?’ becomes irrelevant in some way.
The real question is ‘does this match my expectations?’
In a classroom environment or when discussing the niceties of a gourmet meal served in exquisitely oppulent settings, then I guess you would be able to answer that question. Here… Now… With all that has happened (admittedly, on the grand scale of things and the importance of events to the larger societal picture, not much has happened and no lives or civilisation saved) I find it difficult to say yes or no.
My expectation of myself where wrong. I am not an adventurer. I am no Bear Grylls or Indiana Jones. I am definitely no Sean Conway!! I am just a man who travels. I look at the portrayal of the adventures of others and I compare mine to theirs. Mine has been an awakening and gradually, although I can’t admit to having got there yet, a letting go. A releasing of tension.
I actually feel like I have closed my eyes, spread my arms either side of me and lent back… Hoping that there is something there to land on and at present I am still falling. Relaxation comes as I fall, but I come to my senses and intense up, fearful of what may come at any moment. Maybe this is what others who have decided to step off the wheel, to remove themselves as the cog in another’s machine have felt or experienced. I can’t say for sure, because experience is deeply distinctive to the individual.
All I can say is that I can feel the pull of the machine when I stop. I feel it sinking it’s virus deep into my programming, demanding that I return and play my part. We, us humans, have created such a perfect machine that it has the ability to hide its imperfections and make those who seek a different path feel they have done wrong or that there is no other path. An illusion so perfect and so ingrained into our psyche that breaking free brings with it the praise of tigers who do and the justification of self not to.
The greatest illusion created by man is the illusion of money. An illusion so intriquette that it strives to implicitly devalue all else.
So, I will sit and ponder that last few days and try and make sense of what it is that drive me, what is is that lies deep within this experience, the base note to the perfume of adventure, because it feels that within that backbone lies the reason to my greed. A greed to feel the wind, rain, hail and snow in my face, the cold waters, dust and mud on my feet and the light of each new sunrise on my skin.
And here I leave my ramble…
It is just that. A diary entry of someone who has had conversations with others who feel the need to escape the machine but when given the choice of the red or blue pill, they stumble, their words become a stutter and they pick the safer option…
To remain static is safe. To lean back and fall blindly into motion is not.
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