As summer dwindles to an end and leaves the tumult of this year’s events settled, I cannot help but wonder if without them would we have ever had the pleasure of lazy purposelessness. The kind of boredom a lover seduces you with, wrapping you slowly, so slowly that you do not recognize the exact turning moment when you’ve left your swirling daily routine and gave yourself to healing calmness. It is a different form of wellness, a self-induced yoga of the mind that you yourself are able to summon, a self-healing ritual that should be periodically performed.
Photo by Christopher Campbell
Stressed and constantly busy, our lives are emotionally stretched. Modernity managed to bring with it the kind of speed that the industrialists were gearing toward yet never grasped the full consequences of its force. The never-ending to-do lists, the need to work more than enjoy, the exhaustion that this brings that leaves its mark on leisure time diminishing your capacity to enjoy it.
We’ve been transported in time to the place where summers were long, breathable, boring, where languishing hours of bird watching and laughter would seemingly never end, where the sun will leave its glowing mark on our skins. Dinner scents would slide up our nostrils giving hunger a whole new experience, that of pleasure and anticipation, the only excitement between the morning and the evening sun.
As September comes up on the horizon and August heat loses steam, my mind went to the nostalgic world in a book that I’ve read as a child, a world where things were the way they were independent of events around, where pandemics would’ve not made a dent, where the cosmic nothingness of beautiful living was the exuberant everything of the everyday.
I have cherished that world almost in parallel with living it. The book is called Recollections from Childhood by a Romanian author named Ion Creanga. Written in the memories style, it is a meandering narrative of the aimlessly pleasurable summers of youth as it follows specific accounts of the author’s own childhood in a social context of the first half of the XIXth century Moldavia. The slight restlessness I had when reading it then, pages and pages of too much of this beautiful nothingness that I found sometimes hard to literary-digest yet no problem living it is now gone and I can fully appreciate it.
What is your book, or movie, or personal experience that made it possible to cherish instead of despising the months that passed?