online: 2001
modified: 28 march 02, 29 march 02

(designed to read with the window set to two-thirds of the screen width)

13 march 2004 keeping warm

12:41 From indoors, where I've been confined for a week by a respiratory disorder.

Clouds, grey and silvery, lit by bright sunlight shining through gaps ... pigeons flying to and fro across the street ... a yellow wall opposite ... people walking by, men, women, children, I can see them from the window ... most of them carry something, a rucksack, a handbag, a stick, a bag of paper or plastic ... the graffiti on this side of the street reflected in the windows opposite...

...there is a little Georgian style house across the road ... when I look at it I remember a woman from the USA who came one day to look at it ... she said she'd lived there as a child (or was it that her ancestors had lived there? ... both perhaps.)

A young man walks by pushing a baby in a buggy. The sash windows are rattling in the wind...

Yes, these familiar sights and sounds seem unexpectedly beautiful today - if I can still use that adjective despite it being so discredited - I suppose by the failure of romanticism?...

15:15 Just now I am reclining in the warmest corner of the room to write this on the handheld. I was looking at rain on the windowpanes - I feel I've never seen it so beautiful, falling in sunshine and glistening brightly on the window glass... And now it's ceased, the sky is palest blue, almost white, and there are dark brown leaves and seed pods still hanging on the laburnam tree outside and looking desolate despite the wind, the sun, and the atmosphere of early spring and boisterous weather.

Moments of peaceful outwardness after hours of attention to a winter illness that I thought I was going to escape this year. I have plenty of medicines, both traditional and high tech, so I must be a patient patient. But today, when the sun returned and the outside temperature rose, I was tempted to go out but here I am cautiously nursing myself back to healthy liveliness. It will probably take a few more days.

Is there a beauty in being confined? For some prisoners, some invalids, yes. But commonly not. Yet we voluntarily inhabit rooms, corridors, streets, vehicles, clothes, books, tv schedules, etc, that are all of the nature of boxes, and only seldom are we naked or outdoors in direct contact with the beach, the sea, the air, the mountain, the forest, or each other unprotected by clothes, walls, fences, labels, roles, and our comfortably fixed personalities and stereotypes.

18:05 I went out after all - I couldn't resist a short walk round a few blocks before the sunny day ended. And I feel a lot better for it! Back in the world.

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