72, The Tortoise Way

I was born in the 20th Century and I prefer to live there. I'm not a high-tech person. I like to slow things down. I like to take my time. I'm not a knee-jerk reaction type of person. I would rather take my time and not do something rashly and not have to unravel the unforeseen consequences. I don't and never have owned a cell phone. I haven't had a TV in my home in this century. I try to check my e-mail at least twice a week. I was in New York City recently and felt myself reacting to the rhythm of the streets, only I wasn't trying to keep up with others--I was myself and walking at a pace that suited only me. Life is difficult and challenging. Making a living is almost always a struggle. But making a living is not a life--it is not your life. It may be your life, if you choose to live your life that way. I've been seeing myself as a bit of a tortoise recently. I'm not sure what that means, as there are many ways of interpreting it. I'm definitely not a hare, nor do I intend to race one. There is a simplicity in the life of a tortoise. I'm an unproduced playwright and I seem unusually content with that these days. Moving fast may get you there more quickly, but you too can miss things along the way. I was supposed to have dinner in New York with a friend, whom I rarely see, but she had to cancel due to an imposed upon scheduling complication. If I'd had a cell phone, she could have let me know ahead of time. I was at our meeting place on time, when I received the news. I wasn't angry. It is the way I choose to live and these things happen (it wasn't the first time and it won't be the last). Life is not perfect and my life is not perfect. However, I don't expect it to be. I also hopefully am not arrogant enough to expect the world to revolve around my every whim. I'm not an instant gratification person. I don't understand that mentality or why someone would want everything at their beck and call. There is much we don't know or know about and life in those uncertain moments can be full of startling and unexpected discoveries and insights. I like to follow my instincts, rather than think too much about things. I know in too many situations, I don't have enough information available to me to receive from life as much as I'd like to experience. Many of the more interesting and useful things I've enjoyed in my life--I've stumbled upon. We think and plan and plot, but no matter what we do and no matter what we think we know--life is not linear, so why do we structure so much of our lives in a linear way? I can't explain why I prefer to be a tortoise, but I do. It suits me. It suits me well. Slow and patient footsteps make me more sure footed. Some people always know what they want--I don’t. I like to trust in the universe and see what it has to offer me on any given day. My friend and I were not meeting at the restaurant we were planning to eat at, so instead of eating right away, I went for a walk across town. When I did stop and eat, it was at a restaurant I'd never seen before and it was the best meal of my trip.

posted March 2018

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