Tying the knots

I am looking upriver.  There are two flat-bottomed boaters plying there way upon the placid dark water. It’s late afternoon and the setting sun has amplified the dome of azure blue reflected in the riparian mirror below. The air is pleasant, warm and dry. Notwithstanding I haven’t at the moment anything burdensome to accomplish, I nonetheless maintain the rigour of discipline by strength of habit and routine (among them no more distinguished than cycling and car washes). If I were to analyze my life it has been reduced to a confession of looseness (were it not for custom and tradition). There is upon analysis little if anything of a mandatory nature to my existence. I am not exactly detached but lately there has been a feeling of being at sea. Tying the knots requires more than fiction.

Five months ago upon our return to Canada we awoke to a number of changes.  Though not dramatic, the changes were both noticeable and to a degree formidable. For example getting settled into a new place. I won’t suggest my babbling has begun to sound like a television ad nor that I am starting to blend in with the wallpaper (there isn’t any) but I am certainly feeling more at home. No doubt it promotes the sinews of the overall structure that the metaphor of “coming home” is in this instance not entirely misconstrued given that I commenced my career on this side of the river 47 years ago; and, that many of the people whom I know once lived nearby or still do. Only a moment ago I casually encountered a brother of the craft (from the nearby Village of Pakenham) who told me he is poised to move into this apartment building on November 1st (by which time I further understand he expects to have sold his principal residence in the country). We have thankfully breached those similar credentials (and almost precisely to the day).

As trifling as it may resound, I have also altered my habit of bicycling (something which for the past ten years I have done almost daily throughout the year).  For the moment at least I am stuck upon the new red tricycle I purchased commensurate with moving into this place. Its balance is more dependable than a bicycle. I project that the tricyle also better suits my Tilley raffia hat (though I have yet to wear it to complete the image).

Further along the scale of motion I encountered a mixed challenge in the automotive industry. Seemingly cars can also be subject to the perils of downsizing. In spite of salesmanship to the contrary I have successfully abandonded interest in hybrid motor vehicles. I cannot take credit for this purity. In spite of the growing popularity of electrified vehicles, General Motors has apparently adopted the posture that there is no half-way to the evolution; that is, the electrification is all or nothing.  As a result I have shifted to a smaller, slightly sporty vehicle to accomplish two goals; one, smaller more manageable size, and two, holding fast to the fuel cap without the adulteration of superfluity. The alteration purges the immediate obstacle. Once again this immoderate change of life has produced its share of raveling and unraveling. But the knots are being tied.

A final confusion which has been addressed is that related to the piano.  Clearly the piano has been elemental for me; however its survival is now much reduced. I thank my former ancient friend Louis de la Chesnaye Audette, QC OC for this particular insight.  He too once owned a Steinway grand piano which he in turn removed from his withdrawing room (supplemented I believe by classical music recordings, whiskey and soda and good books, evidence of which he stacked upon the floor beside his lounge chair).