I’ve heard it said that life these days is more intense and hectic than it once was. People are constantly running from one thing to another, trying to get more things done in a day than they can possibly do. I’m not sure, though, if it’s just these days. I’ve seen the same behavior all my life, and there were periods when I lived that way myself. I remember hearing a song back in the sixties. It was called ‘modern day fish’ and you can listen to it on youtube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TL-T0I5nLPU . I tend to agree with the message. And if so, it’s not the contemporary life style. It’s us.
When I was in my middle age, I had a business that kept me busy from morning to night. But I still made time for teaching. And then I had a number of side projects that I had to fit in, one way or another… not to speak of family… plus friends and associates. I was busy all the time. But I remember that there was one situation that was always rewarding. When standing in the shower, with the water cascading over me, I would come up with some of my best ideas, with solutions to problems that had been frustrating me. And the next best thing to that, was taking a walk. And I don’t mean walking to somewhere I had to be. Just walking for the pleasure, to enjoy the day or night, would provide the freedom to let thoughts float by… without purpose or intention.
And that is the condition when we are most able to digest what we’ve learned… the new things we’ve experienced… or think of the many ways by which we might solve a problem. It’s good to work hard, both physically and mentally. It’s good to run or jog or work out, pushing ourselves to extremes. But there has to be a balance. And the quiet time is when we do our internal filing and put our lives in order.
It’s getting to be summer time these days. Nice and warm. With a taste of spring still in the air; wild flowers, and new sprouts to be seen. It’s really a pleasure to take a long walk in the morning. And since moving to my new home, there are a great many places to explore; gardens and parks and hidden corners where I can sit in the shade and contemplate the good life.
But it’s not only the new neighborhood, that’s been providing inspiration lately. The other day, Chana remembered that we had passed a sign a couple of times, pointing to Joel Springs. She suggested that we visit the place. The road we found seemed to be the sort that only a jeep could traverse, but there was also a foot path going there. We decided to walk, though we didn’t know how far away it might be, and we didn’t have a water bottle with us. After a good bit of walking under the hot sun, we decided to go back without having seen the spring. I have a feeling that we’ll still get to see it one of these days. But the path was beautiful, and we enjoyed the walk. On our way back, of course, we saw certain sights we’d missed while going in the opposite direction. It’s all a matter of perspective.
And one of the things I especially like about taking a trip in the country, is coming across the wild flowers. As the season progresses, they show up in their own particular order. There are those that come in the beginning of spring, and by mid spring, only a few are left, and there are new and colorful flowers to replace them. I love the cistus flower especially, which covered the hills a month ago. And these days I stand in awe, looking at the different versions of Queen Anne’s Lace.
On our way back by car, we stopped at a country restaurant and ordered a vegetarian Indian curry for lunch. I hadn’t eaten curry for years and years, and was a little disappointed because it wasn’t at all like what I remembered. And it was served lukewarm. But we also ordered some local beer made in Jerusalem, and it is wonderful. Looking at the bottle, I saw our famous lion drinking beer. It reminded me of some of the comments on my last post. I thought I’d post it for your enjoyment.