online: 6 may 2006
modified: 5, 6 may 2006 2006

5 may 2006 the facts of life

19:28 ...sitting by Viaduct Pond after a picnic at my wild garden, or glade (rediscovered yesterday). I sat on the same fallen tree-trunk and looked again at one of the wood lice i disturbed then. I touched it gently and it moved a fraction of its length and then settled back onto the wood dust where it was well camouflaged and i suppose sufficiently safe... I marvelled, as i looked around at the trees, brambles, grasses, birds, insects, soil, sun, clouds, rain, at how well these things, with no help from mind or artifice, no thought, and perhaps no hope or fear, how they all thrive, spontaneously, interdependently, and together...

Sitting here by the artificial pond with its earth dam and brick viaduct above, i said hello to a man dressed in a Chinese jacket buttoned up to the neck and with two boys and a dog. He came over to talk. He is settled in London and works for a finance company. His parents live in a small town in southwest China where a two bedroom flat costs only 50 pounds a month (here it would cost 10 times as much). These are the facts of life, natural and artificial, and there is not much we can do about either.

While i was writing that i was aware of a mature rabbit eating grass about 20m away from where i am sitting and a number of birds singing or signalling to each other in the surrounding trees. And then a noisy streamlined helicopter flew over at about 300 kph at about 500 feet (or say 200m). And to think that when i was about 20 i intended to design and manufacture helicopters by the seaside in Wales. Also typewriters. And here i am now by a pond writing these words on an electronic screen and very content to be doing so.

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