Day 49: Seven Weeks
It went by fast. I wonder how the next seven will feel? That would get us to the end of June. When you think about it, before all this, predicting what seven weeks from now would look like was pretty easy. Now, I have ideas about the future but nothing certain. Think about that- nothing is certain.
Certainty is a fool’s game most of the time but this time around we can only know that it will likely be warm out, the sun will rise and set, the birds will sing along, and there will probably be guys with ultra loud lawnmowers running around outside my windows while I write. But every week the ‘facts’ change. Apparently the virus does too. It is evolving at lightning speed, at least when compared to its hosts who appear to be devolving almost as fast.
I could have done this diary by stating one new ‘fact’ each day and it probably would be funny to read later. It doesn’t attack people under fifty. Kids don’t get it. There is a new miracle drug. Etc. Between this and the epidemic of fake news, certainty seems quaint. I was pretty sure Putin was ruling with an iron hand, now it seems he is losing his grip. Or is he? I’m uncertain!
I intend to keep on keeping on. At least that’s the plan. Maybe the bug will get me. I hope not. But if I worry about anything it is those I love. And I’m finding out there are quite a few in that category. Last night I had a long meaningful conversation with someone I’ve known as an acquaintance for years but our paths rarely crossed. It was lovely and I look forward to hanging out with her sometime. This has happened a lot. We are reaching out to others, at least some of us are. And everyone seems to get that part.
As a coronavirus diary, this might have been a chronicle of daily change in my physical and emotional life. Instead it has been a story about my internal experience, the processing of altered states and reality, two things I’ve always embraced, though less so as I got older. But my deep dive into Buddhist thought, which has gone on for my entire adult life, has instilled in me a reverence for change. Maybe that is why compassion interests me and uncertainty does not fill me with dread.
Day 50: Nightime Walks, Conversations With Darkness
There was a full moon two nights ago and the sky was clear. It is clearer than usual here in the city because air pollution has gone down. I was reading in bed and that full moon shined through my window. It is bad luck to fall asleep with the full moon shining on you. I remember reading that somewhere, though I do not remember where. Nevertheless I closed my blinds.
I was texting with a friend last night and telling her about my late night walks home through downtown. She told me she had not been out at all other than in her yard. Of course I would not recommend a woman walking alone through downtown at night but it may not be a good idea for me either. Though I do not believe that. I have walked at night in all kinds of places. You learn to make yourself invisible if necessary. It always feels like it is more about shutting down your psychic presence than actually disappearing.
There is this thing where we know someone is looking at us even when they are not in our line of sight. I think most people have experienced this, either as the watcher or the watched. This is the psychic presence, if you want to believe in that sort of thing. I do and I don’t care how that sounds. If you walk through a totally deserted downtown on a Friday night and don’t feel there are other things around you, you are not putting your feelers out. And you’re missing something.
This is not a great time for starting new projects. I’m not really sure why but it is a subject that keeps coming up in conversation. A lack of drive to do something big when our lives are being turned upside down. Maybe it is ‘why bother?’.
But it is a great time to do work projects, things you get paid for. These almost never are big projects either. I’ve worked with a lot of startups over the years and I’m not seeing anything going on there. Maybe I’m wrong and there are people out there creating great things, taking huge chances, and pushing their boundaries. I hope so, but I think our boundaries are already pretty stretched.
It is one thing to imagine strange worlds, it is another to find ourselves in one. Most people I know are ok with it because what is the point of complaining about an act of nature? But I can’t write about an imaginary world right now. As usual, reality has done a better job creating these things.