Thursday, September 27, 2007

over the bounding waves...

So I'm off again tomorrow morning, sailing again. We're doing a 2-weekend/6-race series, and I'm crewing on the first weekend. Three races in 2 days. The best part, though? I'm helping take the boat to the other side of the lake tomorrow! We'll just be out on the open lake, in what's predicted to be "breezy and 73". If it is, truly, then tomorrow will be a wonderful day.

Why do I always, always, leave too much to the last minute, though? Some of the joy in leaving is lost when I'm racing around the house like a madwoman, tired and hungry, and trying to pack my duffel, and Little Boy's suitcase, and make cookies for the weekend, and clean the fishtank, and change the cat litter, and do an unexpected load of laundry because my child threw a pillow into the fishtank "accidentally"...

I must be slightly mad.

I still haven't packed my duffel, though the intended contents are thrown into a laundry basket on my bedroom floor. And I haven't packed toiletries for myself or my child yet, though I did get our meds together and packed in separate bags.

And tomorrow morning I will take the carpool over to school, and then head straight to the boat.

So even if I'm stressed now, tomorrow will be lovely. I had trouble deciding which knitting project to pack! Seven hours cruising Lake hurry, just time.


When did it become a commodity? When did we start putting a dollar value on our leisure time? What once was not even counted, except in hours by the local church bell has become something we fret over in micro-increments. How long will it take? How many minutes did that train take to go through? How late are you? How many nano-seconds does it take to load your computer? How many hours did it take to knit that?

I don't know.

I don't care.

Honestly. If I wanted to knit for pay, then maybe I'd care about shaving an hour or two off the knitting of a pair of socks. But do I really want to punch a clock every time I pick up my knitting while waiting for the doctor, or the train, or the analysis (yes, I knit between analyses, when I'm waiting for the instrument...)?

Do you care? Do you count the time it takes to knit something? I frequently get asked how long it takes me to knit a pair of socks. I usually counter with "I don't know. I tend to knit while waiting. What do you produce while waiting in line?" This summer I was teased at a family reunion for knitting while talking to people, and I told an older relative that we were both sitting there, talking, and at the end of the day I would have a sock, what would she have? Unfortunately, I'm using similar logic of putting value on time, i.e. your time in line is wasted and mine is productive.

Why do we worry about wasting time? What is wasting time? Is it yours to waste in the first place? Yes, I've heard the logic that we're all given the same number of hours in the day, and if you don't use them, you'll never have the chance to get them back...

I don't know about you, but my most enjoyable (and productive) days have been those in which I did not keep track of time, but simply did whatever I needed to, when I needed to or felt like doing it. Those seem to be my happiest days, as well. How many kids are happy when you keep reminding them what time it is? Are you happy watching the clock?

Maybe there's a reason God made no clocks, but simply allows us to monitor our days in large increments by position of the sun...

So I'm off, to live a life of leisure and clock-less joy. No, it's not all happy-go-lucky freedom and joyousness. Racing is hard work, and hurts at the end of the day. That's not the point. But the days I've felt the best have been those in which I live by my body clock and the sun.

I have trouble believing that life was meant to be timed.

Life is not a race.

We'll all get to the end of it, one way or the other.

I think I'll take mine without the clocks, thank you.


bellamoden said...

Well, it's not that you're more virtuous for knitting, but that you have the time. You choose to make use of it. People tell me all the time, I don't have time to knit. Ok, so you don't watch tv? You don't ride in the car? You don't wait at the doctor? It's very weird.

Your weekend though, sounds spectacularly lovely to me. I hope you lose yourself to the moments. I think we all need that.

Kate A. said...

Cool post! This is why I stopped wearing a watch: the battery ran out, I didn't get around to replacing it for a while, and then I had a moment while standing in the drugstore in front of the battery wall, realizing that I liked life better without it. Of course, I still have appointments and planes I have to make (though happily little more than that, since I don't work a 9-5 job), but I've found that there's always a clock within reach in public places, and also that if I really need to be somewhere, I can go early and bring knitting or a book. This makes me much happier than playing the game of calculating how long it takes to get somewhere and how close to late I can be.

Anyway, enjoy your weekend!!!

highflyinsm said...

My friends laugh me at me bacause I always have knitting with me. Well what a better way to spend a train ride or wait for a meeting to start then to knit? I can get where I'm going and make progress on a project I enjoy doing (plus it's much less stressful then driving at rush hour!) It's useing time wisely to me.

Your weekend sounds wonderful. We are going away next weekend as a belated birthday celebration.