Sunday Morning

A few weeks ago, during our first few days sequestered at home, my head was straining to explain to myself what it could all mean, or at least what could come out of it. I failed. The fog was too heavy. Now that things have become more quotidian, as things do eventually even in the most frightening wars, I am still unable to frame it all in any satisfying way.

Many are sure that life will never be the same. It is likely that some of us will make big changes, more of us will make a few changes, but I suspect most will return to the dance. Won’t there be a good argument to be made that the pandemic is proof that life vanishes in the most unexpected ways and so we must live big and live now? One of your own grandchildren has expressed that opinion.

Restrictions on movement are starting to relax in some places, and little by little the world will attempt to venture out toward normality. Even daydreaming of imminent freedom has many starting to forget the promises they recently made to the gods. The drive to process the impact of the pandemic on our deepest selves, and on the entire tribe, is waning. Even many among us who long to understand what has happened will be tempted to interpret it to our liking. Already shopping threatens to make a grand return as our favorite narcotic.

I’m still in a fog. It seems for now that I’ll have to wait for the masters, present and future, to metabolize the shared experience. I look forward to that day. A song, a poem, a movie or a novel will finally point me in the general direction of where my thoughts and feelings about this whole thing are buried. When I get there, I’m sure I’ll still have to do some of the digging myself.

In the meantime, the planet keeps turning and life is still mysterious, powerful and astonishing. Or as you used to say with fewer adjectives and more poetry, nobody teaches life anything.

~ Rodrigo Garcia, from “A Letter to My Father, Gabriel García Márquez” in The New York Times (May 6, 2020)


Notes: Portrait of Rodrigo Garcia via Alchetron.

Comments

  1. “A song, a poem, a movie or a novel”….
    something!

    Been thinking about all this lately too, as everyone else is. And there’s a question I’m curious to get answers to from some people. You, DK, are one of them.

    In the past 6 months I made a career change. And at some point, way before the lockdown, I had to make up my mind. Do I want to work from home for multiple places, or do i want to still serve on sight, and why?
    Now that we all got to taste what working from home really looks like, would you keep doing it after things go back to some form of normal? Why?
    Can you keep doing it forever? How has it impacted your work, in your line of work? Does working face-to-face with your clients and team still have value? What do you miss the most? What is not working? what’s working better?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Productivity for the most part has almost returned to normal. Although members of management of which I am one, will say days never end and its become 7×24. Working parents have double duty, which places considerable stress on household – everyone at home – homeschooling – limited devices and space. Whatever parenting duties have increased, they are offset by no commute and longer hours on both ends of the day and weekends. Having a good paying job these days is considered a privilege with so many out of work and struggling – that’s not lost on anyone these days who is doing what they can to perform at high levels. Meetings / calls are more efficient which is good – loss of face to face time can lead to misinterpretation of signals that you can’t pick up on via telephone, zoom or email (esp email). You have to be incredibly disciplined to be effective working at home. Some call this New World an introvert’s paradise and I would tend to agree. I do believe it is too early to call what is most effective for long term, and if the economy continues to slide — everyone’s job is at risk.

      Liked by 4 people

      • Thank you David!

        Liked by 1 person

      • wow, this wins (before I’ve read any other comments) BEST COMMENT OF DAY for me. You summed it up beautifully. HH mostly misses the ‘talks around the water cooler’ as you call it, I believe…. Or in French it’s Talks in the corridor! That’s where you pick up a lifted eye brow, a quickly thrown in comment which might give you a clue to what you need to know. Other point is what you wrote too: Being face-to-face with a business partner, client, whatever – gives you minimal, hardly perceivable signals you can’t have over the phone, skype, etc….
        What he likes is having 2-2.30h travelling time less per day. He compensates by being available from 8am-8pm….. he’s a ‘good boy’.
        For the rest look at my comment on today’s post. Thanks (NOT) to WP, I still have to hunt you down to get your postings.

        Liked by 1 person

    • terrific questions! Sawsan, if it would concern ME, I would die not having the contact to my ‘customers, colleagues, friends, associates’…. I live and die having personal and close-up contact – but on the other hand being married to a die-hard intellectual I probably have to compensate elsewhere to get enough human interaction. I also LOVE my me-time, where I don’t have to respond to anybody, where I can do my thinking, pondering, writing, and my living in my own world….. If you are in sales, which is what I believe, is what you do – I couldn’t cope with doing my work from home. The ideal in my world is maybe doing 3-2 days work outside/home work – something I have suggested to HH for the past 2years. He refused; I have a hunch he didn’t want to spend all that time with ‘only’ me as company…. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. ‘nobody teaches life anything’ says it all.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. This is perfect – the words, the musings – all of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. As we begin to evaluate everything that’s happened these last few months, there will problem be more questions than answers, but we will continue to march on. Aside from that, only a guy who writes for the NYTs uses words like “quotidian”🙄

    Liked by 2 people

  5. A lovely and cogent distillation of some of the many thoughts that have been bouncing around in my head these past weeks. I have worked from home for years, so in that regard little has changed. But everything else is obviously dramatically different. And for me, some things have been better. For example, I have become much more attuned to small beauties and the benefits of slowing down, stepping back and reassessing, rather that just go, go, going… One of my challenges in the coming days will be to retain the lessons I have learned about the importance of connecting regularly with those I cherish; savoring the small, seemingly pedestrian, experiences; and remembering that one can always, always learn a new way of doing or being…

    Liked by 5 people

  6. Vera Kanigan says:

    Sunday – I marvel, DK at what you discover through your readings. So much wisdom, so much beauty, so many questions…Have to plant some blooms while it’s cool. Thanks much!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I too love that ‘punch line’ — it’s almost what my Sheepadoodle Beaumont has to say about all of this on his blog today — once he writes it of course. 🙂 I know. I know. A writing Sheepadoodle? Who knew? 🙂

    Anyway – back to the quote and the amazing thread of comments/reflections — this from Lori – “I have become much more attuned to small beauties and the benefits of slowing down, stepping back and reassessing, rather that just go, go, going… One of my challenges in the coming days will be to retain the lessons”

    this is what motivated me to start creating an art journal of these past 2 months in sequestered solitude – it’s titled “Sheltered Wonder”. I do not want to forget the beauty of each moment. The wonder and awe everywhere that I’ve learned to cherish through this time — right now, it’s snowing/raining outside my window. As one of the Wonder Rules states in my art journal — Seek Beauty — the white snow falling amidst leaves budding as trees branch out, the river flowing, its waters a beautiful jade green beneath the grey sky. Birdsong everywhere (I’ve decided they too are seeking beauty in the moment and not complaining!)

    And the 5 Wonder Rules — they appeared as I created — I want to live by these rules rather than succumb again to the busyness of the past, the blind acquisition of stuff, the senseless binging on more of anything.

    Be Curious. Seek Beauty. Stay Open. Find Value. Share Grace.

    David — I love how your posts create space for wonder and awe, reflection and gratitude.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you Louise. this “the white snow falling amidst leaves budding as trees branch out, the river flowing, its waters a beautiful jade green beneath the grey sky” reminded me of your video and snow flakes falling yesterday (in May), magic!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Oh what a wonderful idea, Louise, a journal to remember the many wonders unveiled in this strange interlude…so wise! And how I love your description of the snow. Reminds me of a couple of years ago, while still living in NH, when my daffodils were draped with a mantle of snow mid April. I worried for their health while simultaneously marveling at their delicate beauty and resolve, their graceful necks bending under the weight of the snow, yet not breaking…

      Like

  8. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    Ah!! Gabriel Garía Márquez … close to heart!! His son, Rodrigo! Heard about this article on the NYT! … “In the meantime, the planet keeps turning and life is still mysterious, powerful and astonishing. Or as you used to say with fewer adjectives and more poetry, nobody teaches life anything.” … Rodrigo Garcia, from “A Letter to My Father, Gabriel García Márquez” in The New York Times (May 6, 2020)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Always, David, you share the things that touch all of your tribe (us). Yours is one of the few blogs where I read all the comments because your tribe (still us) is formed from some beautiful, insightful, wise and witty people.

    And yes. that last paragraph: “In the meantime, the planet keeps turning and life is still mysterious, powerful and astonishing. Or as you used to say with fewer adjectives and more poetry, nobody teaches life anything.” So perfect.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Christie says:

    The ever changing moments…accumulate..into our unique Journey…which has components of shared global, cultural & personal experiences all so subjective, which will be internalized, some will shed,striving for a balance in the fray…some will hold onto the experience never being able to find the indomitable strength necessary to adjust – moving forward and that will be hard to witness…I am hoping that people will learn understand & appreciate others, to be grateful for the daily blessings, to grow in compassion, to continue to give of themselves, to grow their Souls, to find a way to to Peacefully Co-exist within our World… to Employ Grace, to Personally engage the Tenacity & Creativity that I Know Is In Each One of US…for we must Reach In To Reach Out…///and on this Mother’s Day I say an extra pray for those single Mom’s who have been living in poverty and those Mom’s who have recently been introduced to poverty…that they do not suffer from a poverty of Love…but a Well Spring of Love…

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Christie says:

    I like Kent Nerburn…I think if he writes about this time – it would be comforting, wise and nourishing to the Soul…I love what you shared a long time back (May 17, 2015)…this piece of his writing, will always be relevant…
    https://davidkanigan.com/2015/05/17/we-seldom-long-for-a-future-where-our-bodies-are-less-but-our-spirits-and-insight-are-more-yet-that-future-is-there/#comments
    this sticks with me and all the comments as well…he speaks of those older who have gone before us and experienced tough times…
    I’m not sure of the spelling of her name you have shared her before and she is great,
    Mae Sarton…if she is still living I’d read what she has to say about this time…

    Liked by 1 person

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