Down home

A glorious morning! There isn’t a clear sky nor dazzling sunshine, just a moody grey dome and a raw misty atmosphere. But I sensed something awesome. My exuberance was a whispered one, no more deserving than the triumph of a drunk having withstood excessive temptation. In point of fact my behaviour last evening was not entirely abstemious – I ended getting both feet into a jar of organic peanut butter. With a spoon. Sans bread. Peanut butter is a constant snare for me. I reckon that peanut butter – like beer – is loaded with nutrition, how else to explain its beguilement? It always leaves me replete and regretful. Yet after this morning’s 10 km bicycle ride – a venture in January in Canada I record for historical purposes alone – my penance has been performed.

The public overtures – especially following the uplifting celebration of the new year – wane from both exhaustion and lack of appetite. More importantly there are those who suffer real not unimagined distress. How strange it is that both fortuity and misfortune are authored by nature’s persuasion, at once both selective and indiscriminate. This is not to say that my gusto today is without disadvantage. Unquestionably there are those for whom the choice – if indeed it admits to discretion – is less compelling. Mine at least can be moderately subdued by over the counter analgesics.

Meanwhile I am intent upon pursuing whatever undeserved reward awaits or may be found or unfolded. Over the past six years my life has been devoted to distillation – notably the retirement of professional and filial duty, cursory obligation, political ambition, excess material possessions, whimsical photographic and musical collections, and what in retrospect can only be described as the elevation from surety. Yet just as youth is wasted on the young, so old age is wasted on the elderly. Both insist upon discernment and interpretation. Neither has a rule book for elemental success. The prescriptions of each are turned upon their heads. Ambition is replaced by contentment; contest by cooperation; acquisition by disposition; gratification by satisfaction; complexity by simplicity; additives by withdrawal; and that looming dichotomy, the beginning by the end.