Weekend Note / 04.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Weekend notes are short-form POVs.


I spent Thanksgiving this year in Maine, in a big old house next to the ocean. Snow was in the forecast for the weekend, so our group of eight left a day earlier than expected, arriving just before the storm late Tuesday night. I packed very little, aside from what I knew was absolutely necessary. I also took a book and a notepad, as well as my laptop, which, in the past few months, has started to feel like an appendage. "I'm going to have to work through most of the weekend," I said, as we left.

I've noticed since posting this article — which addresses the unfortunate impulse many of us feel to answer the question, how are you? with a statement about busy we are — that I've been doing exactly that, and constantly. I've been answering every how are you? that's come my way with a response about how overloaded I am, or how overwhelmed, or how I haven't had a weekend in ages. This is almost always followed by something like, "but I can't complain!" or "I'm very lucky!" or "being busy is a good thing!" But, I've begun to wonder.

In Maine, contrary to my plans, I did almost nothing. The days felt suspiciously — and blissfully — long. I'd work for a bit in the mornings and then spend the rest of the day taking snowy walks, or eating too much toast, or sitting in front of a fire, or soaking in a copper bath. For the majority of the week, my book lay untouched on my nightstand; my laptop remained closed. My phone was perpetually missing. I'd find it underneath couch cushions at the end of the day, and when I checked to see if I'd missed anything — an email or a call or a text — I never had. 

I should take this opportunity to write something for myself, something unrelated to work, I thought more than once — but then, I'd walk down to the water or find myself wrapped up in a conversation, and I'd forget. The times I did try to write, I'd stare at a blank screen. I don't have any ideas, I'd think, but not sadly. 

I resorted to more sitting and strolling and chatting. I watched the snow. 

My mind was blank. I was thankful.

16 comments:

Rebecca ♥ said...

Beautiful. I think weekends like this are abundantly important every once in a while. They recharge us, get us back in touch with our inner self, and (in the long run) make us better writers/artists/workers/people because of it! Glad you got to experience it.

Loulou said...

That sure sounds like it was a lovely time away. I love the sound of soaking in a copper bath, something I've never had the pleasure of doing. xo

Rachel said...

The bliss of doing nothing but simply existing - and enjoying it - is such a rare and wonderful experience. It's a skill to not to feel guilty when the opportunity finally comes along. Sounds like it was an utterly beautiful holiday! =]

girlseeksplace said...

Sounds like a perfect weekend.

Brianne said...

I'm so glad you were able to relax your mind while in Maine! I struggle when I have free time and want to do something creative, but can't come up with anything. I'm learning that sometimes a blank brain is better for you in the long run than pursuing leisurely tasks. The pressure you put on yourself to do something for you is still the same as working, you know? And isn't that what relaxing is trying to get away from? Clearly this is something I'm very much in the middle of managing...!

Anonymous said...

so lovely. sounds perfect.

Shoko said...

Rebecca, yes! So important. Hoping for a few more like it this winter.

Loulou, I highly recommend it!

Rachel, I'm trying to embrace it! And yes, it was absolutely perfect :)

Brianne, totally agree. So well said!

Madge said...

Incredible!

--- said...

Geez Louise Shoko. You write beautifully and constantly, what goes on in my head but never say out loud or write ' out loud'.

I adore that. Brava, lady. To all sorts of beautiful nothingness.

Shoko said...

Rincy, thank you — so sweet of you. And yes, to nothingness!

sophie said...

It takes a surprising amount of courage to take a breath and be still in the moment. To enjoy the company around us, the food in front of us, and the landscape outside us. Well done to you for not letting the moment simply pass by. And thanks for the necessary reminder that finishing first does not necessarily mean winning the race.

sophie said...

It takes a surprising amount of courage to take a breath and be still in the moment. To enjoy the company around us, the food in front of us, and the landscape outside us. Well done to you for not letting the moment simply pass by. And thanks for the necessary reminder that finishing first does not necessarily mean winning the race.

Shoko said...

Sophie, such lovely words, thank you!

Bekka said...

I love this, sounds like a lovely weekend.

Akiko said...

I can relate to the story so much. I try to disconnect to work/social medias sometimes, but I easily fall into the same place. Sounds like a perfect holiday getaway and love how you share your story as always!
akiko
Style Imported

burntfeather said...

I think my mind is always struggling with this - wanting to enjoy the now but feeling inspired and motivated to change my life, improve upon it, which often involves being busy. I've taken to having long baths of late and I think this has been a helpful addition - a good reminder that doing nothing can sometimes be amazing :)

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