WalkaboutI've been walking as a new practice to begin the day, clear my head, get Bowie out of the house, and to get ready for a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, in January. I wish I could say I look forward to it or even enjoy it, but I still see it as work (you may too if you saw the dreadful hills in this neighborhood). But I've never found much pleasure in physical movement other than dancing, so I'm not expecting that to change. However, I am finding pleasure in the version of Candace I encounter while outside walking. As an observer of myself, I find the struggle to exercise immensely fascinating.
The best times to walk this week have been during the fog. The marine layer has swept in early and stayed late most days. As a result, all of the spider webs I walk by are spray-painted white. I never knew there were so many among us, their transparency is their greatest survival technique. And what a magnificently horrible species they are! I would hide too if I caused such terror to the giants with whom I coexisted. No only did the ubiquity of the webs surprise me, but the size, shapes, and intricacy drew me in as well. It was so beautiful, I thought for sure a lesson was hiding there. But as I walked by more and more, I realized that they weren't there for me. They weren't put in my path for a lesson or a pleasure. They were a remnant of a creature trying to eat. That's it. They just were. They happened to be in my shared space and happened to be beautiful.
How I desperately wanted to stop the rig and shoot a dozen photographs, but I was also not wanting to stop the momentum of movement - since I was unsure I'd be able to start again if I did stop. As I walked by many a web calling for my lens, I found that I had lost the desperation to take a photo and instantly share it. How I've found a new privacy and am walking a new balance of online/offline presence.
I will never be the one to demonize the internet or find it frustrating to keep up with or work on. I adore the onlines. But I also think I had disciplines in place before the internet demanded my attentions. No, I don't worry about me. In typical fashion, I worry instead for the generations to come who will perhaps never learn the fine art of boredom, books, solitude of self, and the glory of periods of total isolation.
I celebrate my 6th blogging anniversary with you this weekend. In her journals, Sylvia Plath wrote "It is helpless to 'get life' if you don't keep notebooks" (p 273). Among my myriad of physical journals kept since age 13, I think of this blog as a notebook, a testament to my journey as a writer. It has been a formative place for me, somewhere I found myself at ease with the identity of artist, playing with forms in web design, then photography, then poetry, then letters. What an odd place to find oneself, online.
At least I have a record of it. I just do.