Mostly I approach life in as casual a manner as circumstances allow. If I have no specific plans I amble about, either physically or metaphorically, and wait to find out what I encounter. It’s a low expectation, high reward scenario when you consider rewards to include such delights as stopping to listen to birdsong, randomly seeing a friend and having a five minute chat or overhearing a small child tell their mum and dad about a huge poop a pigeon has just done.
But once in a while I am either oblivious to the rewards of everyday experience or allow my expectations to envisage grander events coming my way. On such occasions my approach to life can suddenly seem aimless and empty. Which is an experience in and of itself, I guess. He says, from inside an aimless, empty mind.
Today’s aimlessness is understandable to me as I spent yesterday not ambling at all but being on campus and taking part in a teaching day. It wasn’t an English department event but a psychology one I’d been invited to participate in to bring a perspective from the other side of the couch, as it were, and share my thoughts on therapy with a dozen psych students. Nobody uses a couch these days, by the way, therapists aren’t that Freudian any more. Unless the client would rather lie down, maybe.
I’d rather have spent today lying down, recuperating some of the energy spent engaging with yesterday’s very interesting but quite exhausting experience. But there was one thing I had to do today, after which I found myself trying to return to ambling about and seeing what I encountered. Which is when I realised how aimless and empty I feel in contrast to the purpose and focus of yesterday. So I have decided that for the rest of the day it is my actual purpose to be aimless and empty. Nailing it so far.