Friday, 9 October 2009

The Call of the Wild (or what I learned from the Antarctic Centre)

Monday 8.10am

I am a city person through and through. I love the whole busyness of it, the the sounds, the smells and the different views that suddenly open up as you turn a corner. I enjoy the anonymity as well, especially in the mornings as people flow past with that vacant going to work look about them. Whole lives and worlds flow in and around and past each other smoothly, never quite touching.

Just lately though the city has lost its charm. For the last few weeks whilst going to and from work all I seem to notice are the fences surrounding everything, and now here on holiday in Christchurch I feel surrounded by vast expanses of concrete and tar. We are such a controlling species. Everything has to be divided up and enclosed, from the fields with their barbed wire surrounds to the meat in the supermarket hygienically contained within it’s plastic wrapping. But we are fooling ourselves if we think we are in control, the real world is still there just under the surface. It peeks through in the grass growing in the cracks in the pavement or in the seeds drifting past on the breeze.

Deep within me I feel the urge too admit this and let go to be part of the world, but I cannot. I have spent so long as I am that even in my most extreme wilderness fantasies I am warm and comfortable, swaddled in layers of fleece and Gortex.
I am an indoor cat, I can see and hear the world out there but the closest I’ll come is to look at it through the glass of the window.

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