With Paolo we’ve been joking recently about how many random things I can get done when I am procrastinating from doing my writing assignments. I’ve been found baking spontaneous apple pies for instance, cleaning the bathroom or sorting out and tidying the attic (something that was on my to-do list for at least 6 months).
When I’m feeling blocked and just can’t seem to find the way to start writing, I try and remember that taking a walk, while it does not contribute to getting words on the page, is generally a good cure for break my mental resistance. In the worst of cases, I tell myself that even if I still don’t write afterwards, I’ll have at least stretched my legs and gotten some fresh air. In the best cases, I come back with a sliver of a new idea to work on.
Saturday afternoon was one of those days, so after sitting frustrated for a while and uselessly distracting myself by reading other people’s writing, I decided to go out and catch the last of the afternoon light. I set myself the challenge to attempt to capture the colour contrasts in that lovely low autumn light. So with my ISO set high, I looked around for bursts of colour to photograph while trying to hold my camera as still as I could.
When the light faded and the cold got to me, I headed home, clear-headed. I even saw a beautiful pink sunset that I would most likely have missed were I staring at my computer screen. My inner-critic probably also got a bit frozen, because it left me enough space to sit down and start typing when I got back.
JOYFUL GRATITUDE #95
I love how no matter what is going on in our lives the planet just keeps on doing its thing, the sun rises and sets, the seasons change, nature blooms and withers…
On Wednesday I witnessed this gorgeous sunset from my window-sill. Fiery clouds showing their majestic beauty, seeming to say undeniably that ‘everything’s gonna be ok’.
JOYFUL GRATITUDE #76
I love this time of year when the evenings are getting longer, with beautiful light lingering later and later, allowing for after-dinner walks in the neighbourhood. It’s amazing how much good a short walk will do to clear my mind and boost my mood after a busy day at work. I know this, however on automatic pilot at the end of the day to relax I will mostly just sit at the computer or on the sofa with a book, rather than go and get some fresh air.
Since I am noticing this, I would like to change this habit and make a conscious attempt to go for a stroll after dinner more often, however brief. I know it is always worth the effort of putting my shoes back on, leaving the dishes un-done and heading out. On a recent post-dinner walk, I enjoyed watching a small brown puppy excitedly running in the evening light, took the time to observe the fresh new leaves growing in people’s gardens and even saw a gorgeous sunset…
For previous evening walk adventures see: magic hour bird watching and spotting the perfect hideaway.
JOYFUL GRATITUDE #69
In Brighton, we enjoyed long walks along the beach, each step keeping us firmly in the present with the crunch of the pebbles, the cold sea wind on our cheeks, the waves crashing over and over again on the shore… We looked for pretty stones until our pockets bulged with their imperfect shapes and their fascinating greys, oranges and blues. After a cloudy day, the sun came out, illuminating the abandoned pier with its last rays. It was good to be reminded how deeply healing being by the beach, no matter the season.
Woke up last Wednesday to find it was snowing! The streets were beautiful and so quiet, with the snow padding every sound. Instead of rushing to work like I normally do, I took my time and walked one stop further to catch the tram in order to have a peaceful moment before my busy day in the office.
On my way home I did the same. Despite the freezing wind, I got off the tram and went for a quick walk in my neighbourhood, watching the sunset with its warm colours overtaking the sky. I’m feeling deeply grateful for these moments appreciating nature’s beauty.
Those moments around dawn and dusk, when the light is soft and a magic glow shines on everything, are my favorite times of the day.
While we were in Capraia Paolo and I made a point to be outside and enjoy them often (even if it meant getting up at 5am to see the sunrise).
We have our own favorite ways of being in the moment: I like to take pictures and capture the gorgeous light, while for Paolo it is the best time for fishing. Over the years, I’ve taken tons of pictures of Paolo on different coasts, patiently casting his line against stunning backdrops of changing skies.
Dawn is particularly magical because it is so quiet, and as the fiery sun makes its majestic appearance, it feels like nature is putting on this show just for you.
JOYFUL GRATITUDE #4
We had a lovely team day with my colleagues to plan our activities for next year (and enjoy some energisers;). I had a really fun time and I’m so grateful for having such open-minded colleagues, with their creative ideas, constructive feedback and most importantly their great sense of humour! We were lucky to enjoy this spectacular sunset in the Westerpark as the perfect end to our day:)
Thanks a lot to Michaela A. for this pic of Eva and I being silly in the sunset!