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Friday, July 22, 2016

Paradise For A Few Fleeting Moments



I wrote this less than a week ago...

Below is a message I hope to read over and over during the year, long after I return from a vacation.  It is also a message to you, and those who seek to see life a little differently from whatever today’s routine delivers.

I have found a momentary paradise.  It exists on a Caribbean beach, where the sound of the waves melodically and reassuringly rush upon the clean, white sand.  The steady, nurturing breeze wraps around my lazing body as if feeding me a nutrient that had been absent from my diet. The urge to do something and the obligation to do anything has subsided and given way to the overwhelming message of the environment. 

The sunny sky tells me to just lay here and to enjoy the moment, the doing of nothing.  Sometimes quietude is a burden, overwhelming you when your anxious body and wandering mind reflexively signal to you that you should be somewhere, following a schedule and feeling behind for that is otherwise what the vast majority of my days feels like.  But not here. I’m in my third day of my trip to St. Martin, rekindling not only a honeymoonish connection to my wife of 14 years but an affair with the side of me that used to appreciate the bare necessities of life, that appreciated the world’s most basic but beautiful formula – sun, ocean, and nothing but sleeping, eating and giving in to the urge to be an animal, to be free and untethered from society.

I know this won’t last. Jobs, children, and society norms await me.  I cannot just run away permanently from life, and the moment I would do such a thing would lead to the end of paradise.  The money would run out.  The concern of survival would be my consuming focus.  The loss of my life’s current ties would sadden me.  It’s not that I dislike my life, for I simultaneously look forward to returning while fully feeling enthralled is this other life, the one that lets me sleep at two in the afternoon or past my usually alarm-started day of 7 am, that lets me read a book unrushed by the demands and schedules that I adhere to at work or at home, that lets me turn the choice of dinner into the biggest decision asked of me in a given day. 

Today, I’m most appreciative of life, having given myself a cleansing distance from where I’ve come and to where I’ll be a few days from now upon my return to civilization.  I’m at the point where my “knowing” and being are in synchronicity – that point where I can fully understand and appreciate that these are some of the best days of the year and in my life.  I can’t consume at a more rapid pace than I am now, but every breath that I take filled with clean, pure air, filtered of obligation, stress, tension, frustration, even desire, is like a hundred ordinary breaths. It’s as if everything is heightened.  Things taste better.  Color is more vibrant.  The senses are alive and in tune to a stream of freedom.

It doesn’t hurt that beautiful people in minimal beachwear cross my path.  A thongkini-clad woman happened by me yesterday.  A topless vacationer crossed my field of view this morning.  I saw fully naked naturists at the far end of the beach.

The sky is peppered with parasailing adventurists; the ocean surface carries kayaks, wave-runners, and a floating trampoline; and below the top of the green waves are snorkelers and scuba-divers not more than a half-mile off-shore.

No place is perfect and no place can be paradise for long. The human spirit is always longing and seeking, failing to be fully content with what is.  Eventually this beautiful place will bore me, its cost burden me, it’s lack of other forcing me to return to the familiar or to launch into yet another exploration of somewhere else.  But for today and the duration of my trip, I willfully enjoy and value the moment I’m in.

I’m happy to say that part of my formula for happiness on this trip includes reading books. In fact, I’m thoroughly enjoying a book about the act of reading, of all the pleasures and teaching moments gained from how and what we read.

This trip reassures me that there are times when one can return to find and discover his or her self, when one can gain by doing nothing, when you are enriched by simplicity and the lack of obligation, where you only have to open yourself up to the beauty around you. I may never return here, perhaps purposely, for some other paradise awaits me, in time, one that will have the bar or standard raised a little higher now that I know and have enjoyed such a place and moment as here and now.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2016.

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