9th March 2020- Rat Race Revisited

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9th March 2020- Rat Race Revisited

9th March 2020- Rat Race Revisited

As much as the walk to my voluntary post in town today felt the delights of spring past, with its imaginary endless days of light breeze and bountiful warm sunshine, the trip home offered something contrary.

I wouldn’t say that I had forgotten about the rat race. I remember writing a piece a couple of years ago where I bemoaned the structure of daily life. My escape then was a four mile walk home along the beach path from Portslade, lost in the 70s ballads, and in wonderment at the awesome tides. This walk was at its best in October, the weather still mild, the holiday makers long back in the urban tread.

So this evening, at the inconvenient seventeenth hour, I find myself in the middle of my nemesis. The rain steadily falls, the faces grow longer, and nothing unique, creative, or palpably redeeming paints itself into this urban frame of routine. This is what we all signed up for. Or were signed up for.

Even during my brief countryside residence there was a similar feeling about the village. New street number old address. I try to convince myself that to be constructed is just that. Such prisoners have their own keys. I purposely re-route via Queen’s Park. The rain gets harder but I get brighter. Just me and a couple of swans survey the pond’s acre. That’s better. An urban oasis.

I love greenery, trees, grass, hedges, water features. But even in the town this still has the feel of contrived aesthetics. I tell myself that the most important thing is mindfulness- and to wait for the lighter evenings and a few uplifting country walks. The plans to let go of the car now find themselves on hold.

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