Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sonnet 116, one of my favorites

Let me not to the marriage of true minds

Admit impediments. Love is not love

Which alters when it alteration finds,

Or bends with the remover to remove:

O no! it is an ever-fixed mark

That looks on tempests and is never shaken;

It is the star to every wandering bark,

Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.

Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks

Within his bending sickle's compass come:

Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,

But bears it out even to the edge of doom.

If this be error and upon me proved,

I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

William Shakespeare

(1564 - 1616)

Monday, June 21, 2010

A country you can never visit

I've been thinking about the nature of regret. I think it's pretty clear that regret is most often about something that happened in the past. It could be something you did, or didn't do. It could be something someone else did or didn't do, that had an effect on you. It can be generalized or localized. But a key element of regret is its focus on the past.
Can we change the past? What effect does regret have on the past? Or, is regret really about the present, even though it seems to be focused on the past? Our feelings about the past are always happening now, after all.
We can never visit the past, not in a real sense. That is the nature of humanity. We live life in a linear fashion, ever moving forward. It is only our minds that visit the past. Our minds can do amazing things, using memory to relive, alter, glorify, condemn, excoriate, justify, exonerate...regret...
But it's all in our minds. We don't ever go back to the past in reality. What if we could? Would we be able to release regret if we could?
This weekend, I heard someone say, "The past is a country you can never visit." It was a timely reminder to bring myself to the present. Regret is a trick of the mind to try to visit the past. Staying in the present is a way of letting go of regret. It is a continual process, for some reason, because we, or at least I, tend to relive past moments.
What would it be like to never have any regrets? What would it be like to always live in the present? It's how I imagine heaven to be.....talk about a country you can never visit! :-)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

I met Colin Firth!

We went to the Bedford Park Green Days Festival today, at Acton Green Common (10 minutes walk from our house). There were the usual craft booths, musical performances, food, games, and carnival rides.
DH and I were watching the kids on the bumper car rides, when I noticed Colin Firth standing ten feet away from me! He was waiting for his boy on another ride. He was just standing there by himself, just a regular fellow. He was so unassuming that at first I couldn't believe it was him!
Now, I knew when I moved here that he lives in this neighborhood. It was my most fervent wish that one day I would chance to see him around town. I imagined him, dashing and debonair, striding down the street, perhaps with a small entourage. And I would catch a quick glimpse of his wonderful self, but wouldn't dream of actually approaching him, or being able to for that matter!
So, here he was, just a dad out with his kid. He looked older and considerably less polished than his Hollywood persona, but the calm intensity in his manner was still there.
I looked his way a few times, but didn't want to stare, so I pretended to be looking at the ride. Then he walked away to another ride. I told DH that I had seen Colin Firth, and wasn't that wonderful? When the kids came off their ride, we walked down the path in the same direction.
Suddenly, there he was, and DH stopped, and said to him, "Excuse me, would you please say hello to my wife, and shake her hand?" Colin Firth was, in true British fashion, calm and expressionless. He stuck his hand out, said "Hello." And I took his hand, and it was...dry...and a bit cold and rough. Not what I expected! I managed to say "Nice to see you," and gave his hand a quick squeeze before turning away.
It happened so very quickly, and I was so amazed that DH did that for me! I would never have done it. But now I can die a happy woman because I have touched Colin Firth, one of my favorite actors.
I never thought of myself as star struck. But it was thrilling.
As we left the area, he was there, watching his boy on the bumper cars.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Glub, glub

I'm moving from the "fish out of water" phase, into the "sink or swim" phase. I knew this would be a big adjustment, but the reality is more....real....than the imagining of it.
There are physical, emotional, mental and spiritual challenges each and every day. And each one of these vies for my attention, often at the same time. And that's just me. Then there are the three others I live with.
It's enough to keep me busy, that's for sure. I wonder sometimes how I get as much done as I do. Yet it never seems like enough.
Most of all, it never seems like enough fun is in my life. That's a comment, not a complaint. I'm sure once I get the house settled and unpacked, and we have been here a while longer, that more fun will come. I hope. Until then: glub, glub.