Saturday, July 18, 2009

Art and Time

I am trying to figure out how to live without an agenda. I need plans and places to go and deadlines to meet. How is it possible to live day to day without obligations? I am not doing well so far, in that I have an internal sense of not being where I should be or doing what I ought to be doing.

I am staying with Daphne and Julien and their children Belina and Marius. Julien is a conductor and Daphne is a musician, and both have projects and 'gigs' and children to take care of. Today, I had errands and office obligations and a yoga class to get to, but when I rushed to the house to participate in an outing for the afternoon, time stood still for a while, and the children played while Julien sat and talked and had a cigarette and I showered and changed and waited. We left after a few hours and Julien went to the gym while the children and I wandered through Artscape, an annual three day art fair in downtown Baltimore. The place was incredibly crowded. I believe that the economy has encouraged many Baltimoreans to stay home this summer, so more than the usual amount of visitors came to the fair. I was worried about losing the children, and hung on tightly to hands. We waited another 90 minutes for Julien after his two hour stint at the gym. Time is elastic for some, but not yet for me.

I stressed about getting Maya to bed on time. At home, or as part of the home life I once had, Maya was in bed by 8:30 or we are lucky if they are asleep by 10:30. I worry about Maya being tired and irritable tomorrow without enough sleep. But I have no control over the schedule here and remind myself that I have to let go of control, be easy with the moment and find my peace. I hear the same message in yoga classes: being in the moment, being peaceful, letting go, surrendering.

Eric reminds me that this is good preparation for our year in Ecuador. Time is an entirely different dimension there. We cannot expect anything to start when it is supposed to, or that an activity set for a particular time will happen as planned. We must be ready to wait, to be tolerant of changes in schedules and everything starting late, later, and latest. Evenings start late and go to early in the morning. I must learn to take naps, siestas, ease into the morning and rev up for the evening. So time with Julien and Daphne will be a great introduction to time in Ecuador. I must learn to manage my anxiety and expectations.

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