The stories of my life on a little island in the middle of the Mediterranean sea ... and my occasional adventures beyond these shores.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Like Confetti In My Head

The remnants of hurricane Gonzalo hit our shores with fierce winds and not much else – no rain, no thunderstorms – just a few solitary clouds that sailed swiftly across the sky like huge sailing ships.
Cocooned in the stillness of our home. I absent-mindedly stare at the blinking cursor and empty screen. Silence envelopes me. The words are there but they are jumbled up, like confetti in my head; my notebooks full of unfinished sentences. I have a strange feeling of deja-vu`; of having gone through such a phase before – this semblance of outer calm and inner turmoil.
USA 2013 587
I know the cure is to immerse myself in a good book or two, but it’s been three weeks since I finished Love in the Time of Cholera and I haven’t started anything new. I have an exam coming up in December and the little free time I have is now taken up with pharmaceutical textbooks and legislation. It’s been almost 20 years since I last sat for an exam. I suddenly seem to have landed in a slightly alien world.
And speaking of aliens, I came across this little guy in our back-yard a few weeks ago.
Alien (4)
As I focused on him and the camera made its little high-pitched noises, he lifted his head and looked at me. Maybe my camera spoke his language. He was a tiny thing, but he made me smile. It’s the little things, it’s always the little things, that brighten up my  day. But even though I’m not the type who wishes time away, (I’m getting too old for that) I am honestly counting the days to mid-December, when all this jitteriness will be behind me.
Alien (3)
So now you know why I’m blogging less and only commenting sporadically on your posts. Wishing you all a world of cute little aliens – unless they make you run a mile - and I hope there are no exams on your horizons.
Alien (2)

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Shifting Tides

The seasons are shifting. The days are getting shorter. Sometimes, when I wake up, the rosy fingers of dawn are just starting to caress the morning sky. The air is cool and sweet. It smells of dew and reminds me of mysterious things. I linger by a window sometimes, enjoying the silent serenity. Then the neighbour’s dog barks. The spell is broken.
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In those few moments that I spend with the dawn, gazing at the valley and fields, the retreating darkness fools me into thinking that nothing much has changed over the years, that the view outside my window is the same now as it was fifty years ago, five hundred years ago. But as I turn to face the day, reality comes flooding back. We live in a horrible world. Ebola, ISIS, tension in Ukraine, famine, murder, child abuse … my mind reels from the sickening brutality of it all. I want to return to my window. To that moment of peace, before the harsh light of day thrusts the unpalatable truth into the spotlight.
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The tides are shifting and we are being carried along with them. The outcome may be bleak. Or we might rise above the chaos and witness humanity’s finest hour. That is what I want to believe. Maybe it’s what we all need to believe.
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It’s a scary world out there and I try not to dwell on it too much. After all, our collective destiny is very rarely in our hands. When people woke up, on that fateful June day one hundred years ago, they were blissfully unaware that a murder in Sarajevo would plunge the world into war not once, but twice. In the grand scheme of things, we are but pawns in history’s game of chess.
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Yes, the tides are shifting, but tomorrow the sun will still rise in the east and set in the west. The dew will lie heavy on the  leaves and will luminesce like pearls, before the warmth of the sun will make it rise like a wraith to the blue skies above. The last cricket will sing and the waves will hug the shore as they have done for thousands of years. Life will go on.
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Tide-out, St Ives, Cornwall ~ July 2012


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