Just an ordinary day; you can’t get much more extraordinary than that! ‘Ordinary’ suggests some kind of stasis, whereas life is dynamic; I fail to understand why I ever think of any day that way. Yet, that is and just was the case; of that terrific disservice to the value of each moment I plead guilty!
Each new day we enter is a day of opportunity, a time to appreciate or a time to waste; all too frequently I spend a generous portion of the morning in bed, catching up on the sleep and, strangely, obtaining a quality of rest which the preceding hours never quite managed to attain. I do not, any longer, make this into a source of guilt but rather, take it as a necessary preparation for the full appreciation of the remainder of these twenty-four hours.
Upon emergence, and consequent merging into the stream of daylight hours, an ambling stroll up the garden, observing the minimal changes, to plant growth and decay, in both the cultivated and the more natural areas of our mini-estate, seems an essential prerequisite to my enjoyment of the day. It’s difficult to imagine how I possibly coped with living in a second floor (third floor in stateside terminology) apartment; perhaps I quite simply existed rather than “lived”. On the other hand, I do realize that what you’ve never had you can’t really miss!
There are inevitably occasions when my, Marxian inspired, political nature leaves me feeling rather at odds with this “spiritual” passive acceptance of my lot but, campaigning burn-out occurred many years ago. Social sympathies remain unchanged, despite my decrease in physical and emotional stamina; capitalism continues to eat itself, greed rules and, as a result, much of the world is quite simply a bloody mess. Pharmaceutical companies continue to leak laboratory strains of virus only to cash in on the need for an antidote; those prepared to stamp anyone down succeed in business; Palestinian Arabs are turned into homeless helpless victims on the very lands which are their birthright, as the persecuted have become the persecutor and, it seems as if morality is just another word for unenlightened self-interest.
The utilitarian ethos of the greatest good for the greatest number has been turned into an excuse for trampling on the rights and freedoms of all those who deign to challenge the status quo!
Sorry, I’m rambling again – I’ve almost lost the original thread – what was it? Oh yes, I remember, the extraordinariness of the everyday. These days, I’m overwhelmed by the simple occurrences of nature, the exhilaration I find in hearing the schnuffling - schnaffling sound of a hedgehog emanating from the vicinity of the birds’ ground feeder, the moths flying out from the long grasses as I take a twilight stroll up the garden, the sheer richness of life’s tapestry.
I can’t ignore the suffering that goes on all around us and, in spite of an accompanying sense of helplessness, I attempt to bear up in thought, prayer and occasional action, those who are in need and pain. In the words of a song by one of my favourite contemporary singer songwriters – Danelle Harvey – I’m ONLY HUMAN.