The trouble with not blogging is that my thoughts have nowhere to go but round and round my head. If I lived in pre WW2 Paris perhaps I would be surrounded by amazingly creative friends and have impassioned conversations over morning coffee in funky cafes but as it is I have face-to-face friends who are probably not up for an impassioned conversation at 8 am in regional Oz, my computer and my creative friends in cyberspace who more often than not respond to my blog rants. I will write this on my new laptop (if I can!).Learning how to use this new fangled thing is like learning to drive a Ferrari after driving a T Model Ford. (apologies about the layout of the post – has WordPress got incredibly more complicated while I’ve been or is just me?)
My relationship with this new computer is just one of the many uncertainties in my life at present. My daughter and her kids moved out yesterday. I had thought I would have to move at the end of the month too but the estate agent says I can stay on a while longer. That’s just as well as new computer purchases, car repairs and household bills have eaten away my going to the desert funds. All proposed trips to the desert are now postponed indefinitely. My book manuscripts and many of my old photos are still to be recovered from my old computer. I will find them some time I hope but will have to go up to Melbourne to do so. Just what I’m doing creatively is evolving (in other words I haven’t got a clue). I’ve been exploring all kinds of options while offline but my creative expression is still very much at the primordial soup stage.
On Sunday afternoon I took a road trip to escape the domestic mayhem of my daughter packing up while her daughters fretted about whether or not they could get Wifi in their new house and my autistic grandson acted out his distress about the certainties of moving.
I drove down the western end of The Great Ocean Road and explored the first stretch of coastline I came to – a strange locality called The Bay of Islands. I’d forgotten to charge my camera battery before I left so could only take phone photos. Whether or not the phone was in sync with my mood is uncertain but somehow the images it recorded corresponded with my mood for nothing I saw or photographed looked quite real.
Along that part of the coast you don’t so much go for a walk along the beach as drive from one lookout packed with international tourists to the next. At one lookout tourists speaking a language I couldn’t identify scarpered over the cliff tops apparently oblivious to the warning signs that told of unstable cliffs prone to crumble into the sea without warning.
They appeared to be engrossed in a movie of their own devising so I left them to their uncertain outcomes and continued to explore my own.
I’ve been reading a book titled ‘The Antidote: Happiness for people who can’t stand positive thinking’ by Oliver Burkeman. In a chapter about embracing uncertainty I came across the ideas of Saras Sarasvathy, a business researcher. After interviewing successful entrepreneurs she came up with an anti-goal approach to success. The ‘bird in hand’ principle is one of her key ideas:- ‘Start with your own means. Don’t wait for the perfect opportunity. Start taking action based on what you have readily available: what you are, what you know and who you know.’ I thought I would go for a walk on a beach to think about just who I am but finding a beach I could access proved difficult.
Down on the sands my feeling of unreality and uncertainty persisted Looking up at the sheer cliffs I felt a worm peering up out of a worm hole. What do I really know? I wondered. Climbing up out of the worm hole I decided to head for home before the sun sunk any lower and shone directly in my windscreen.
My uncertainty about the future and my creative directions stayed with me on the way home but as I stopped to take more photos I decided that one thing I am certain about is that I love to blog and post my photos online – even when they look decidedly unreal.
Getting a reliable home internet connection became my goal for the coming week. I achieved it today and will catch up with your blog posts very soon.