Day of Idle amusement

We are just now approaching the noon hour, far past the rosy-fingered dawn, and I am yet at the breakfast table, fiddling on my iPhone and MacBook Pro computer, sipping what has become cold coffee, having just munched on a sliced green apple. There is an uncommonly cool wind blowing from the kitchen window through the patio door overlooking the marine inlet. It is not a beach or pool day.  The northern wind of 35 km/h has reduced the ambient temperature to a chilling 65°F. Pavane Op. 50 is my background stimulation.

The Pavane in F-sharp minor, Op. 50, is a short work by the French composer Gabriel Fauré written in 1887. It was originally a piano piece, but is better known in Fauré’s version for orchestra and optional chorus. It was first performed in Paris in 1888, becoming one of the composer’s most popular works.

I have never (except perhaps when I was drunken, a privilege I haven’t recalled for over a decade) slept terribly well.  The distinction of perpetual sobriety has wrought with it the unintended disadvantage of endless contemplation, rumination, casting one’s mind back, figuring, imagining, processing, reviving. I am not saying it’s a worthless enterprise.  It did for example spirit me to write something in the early hours of the morning somewhere around 2 o’clock. Or was it 4 o’clock?  I cannot now recall. Nor – more to the point – does it matter a damn.  Because the point is that I am now in that enviable realm of undiminished and unrepentant idleness. It is I have discovered a luxury afforded not only the indolent but also the unrestrained. I am no longer shackled to time limits or obligation, convention or commitment. And while I suspect my thought patterns are aligned primarily with what they have always been, I perceive I am at least partially open to modest alteration and improvement. I admit it is a challenge to overcome bad habits, to be more understanding and forgiving, to become an accommodating adult without the lubrication of vacuous minority.

The children visiting next door have just bolted by on their way to the pool with their father, separately clad in towels, backpack and what appeared to be a portion of a model airplane. The mother has also just passed, wearing sunglasses on this cloudy day, holding two cups of what I imagine to be coffee in each hand. Theirs is by contrast a sphere of limited purpose and privilege; not that they aren’ t enjoying themselves but simply that their dominion is confined by the paradoxical limitation of youth and expectation (both of which I have by contrast conveniently abandoned). Nor would I – unlike some hopelessly wistful people whom I know – think for a moment about repeating it all if it were indeed at all possible. No, for me the reward of life is living it and getting through it; life is not a mere container within which one is expected to bounce around endlessly.  It is a voyage with a beginning, a middle and an end.  And when at last we get there, we’ve arrived.  Period. By which I mean, that is all I intend to say upon the subject. Pardon me if for the moment I exhaust what remains of my internal combustion upon the present only, not upon speculative after-life (itself an absurdity). If perhaps the party continues, then we haven’t yet arrived. Apart from that the voyage across the sea is to unknown territory.  How could I possibly fathom what is about the transpire in the time which remains?  For one thing I haven’t the time to expend upon such an ambition.  I am overtaken by the gratifying currency of my resort.

Apollo sent them a fair wind, so they raised their mast and hoisted their white sails aloft. As the sail bellied with the wind the ship flew through the deep blue water, and the foam hissed against her bows as she sped onward.

Quite honestly since His Lordship and I began the unintended process of organizing our respective lives – now almost 30 years ago – it has been an indisputable adventure from good to better.  Comically there have been serious interruptions along the way but thanks in no small measure to His Lordship’s unending focus and contribution we have together weathered those storms (the manifestation of many of which has as well been upon the seas, the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico, the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Pacific Ocean). The maritime image of life is for me always inspiring; the Ship’s Bell, the compass, the barometer. But these retail items are for now best reserved for similar contemplation only as during midnight rambles. I find now I can quite comfortably confine my erstwhile profligacy to idle amusement.

Thetis is particularly known as a shape-shifter: when Peleus desired to marry her, she transformed herself into fire, water, a lion, and a serpent in order to escape him. As the personification of calm waters, Thetis is responsible for providing a peaceful sea. She is that center of peace and calm that is always available, even in the midst of changing forms. She is a goddess who enjoys life’s pleasures.