Thursday, May 14, 2009
For the first time since my working life began in 1992, I have six weeks off. Six weeks to do nothing, or something. In the middle of the first week, I am still fighting off the urge to be doing something: get up, get out, tick things off, you'll run out of time... the shape of the day with nothing mandatory in it is strange and a little intimidating. I cycle to a cafe where I read the paper outside in Sydney's winter sunshine. I had my hair cut. I go to the gym. I play Scrabble on Facebook. I have felt oddly reluctant to write my blog. I took my camera (an excellent Nikon D80, kindly lent to me by one of my clients) to the park and took hundreds of close-ups of spiky birdlike flowers; I stalked the unwary on street corners to take pictures of the casual grace of pedestrians waiting for the green man. Other than brief conversations with the man who sells me coffee or those people who seem to like to stop and talk to me when I have my camera in front of my face, I hardly speak to anyone all day. It all adds up to not very much, but I think I will get used to it. When I come back, perhaps I won't be able to say what I did with my time, except that, trite though it sounds, I am learning how to relax about not having anything to do.