Sunday, November 2, 2008

Wilderness--Week Away

Brenda had her cell phone in her lap. I was driving. The phone rang. As she answered I realized that we had both jumped at the first beep like it was a shot going off. That was about two months ago. It made me aware of the stress we had both been absorbing. We had become used to reacting to things. It was almost like our routine had been reduced to either handling the current crisis or waiting for the next one—somewhat exaggerated, but that’s how it felt at times.

When Stephen called and said he was unable to take up his week at the Wilderness Dunes time share, we could have it, won’t cost a cent, it seemed like the Great Mystery had intervened. Brenda especially had been under severe stress.

The units on the south side, the sea view side, had all been taken. We were very happy with our north facing one. I will add at this point that October had been a Rubicon month, Brenda’s words. We reached the decision to stop reacting to things around us, things we could not control, and begin to live our life. If it had not been for this realization the time away could have been as stressful, same old stuff, different location. We took only my cell phone and that was turned on twice a day only. The significant thing is that we were both comfortable with the decision to deliberately be not-available.

Saturday—The Day of the Trampoline. We woke up to a “blop-pause-blop” that went on for hours. We discovered that there were two kids who, apart from meal times, and occasional drinks breaks were going to spend the weekend trampoline-ing! Maybe we’re getting old and crotchety. Well, at least one of us may be heading that way.

We went to the Sedgefield Farmers Market in the morning—a nice community thing. They allow dogs. It’s relaxed and unhurried and makes one yearn for down-to-earth stuff.

Sunday—The Day of the Damp Squid. Having enjoyed the Sedgefield farmers’ market on Saturday, we went to the Sunday market at Wilderness. Bad idea. There were other days too that did not pan out the way we intended. We had a power outage, so no TV. We went to the Garden Route Mall, most of the shops were shut because of the power outage. So, the highlight of the day was lunch at Victoria Bay!

Monday—The Day of the Big Tree. There’s an Outiniqua Yellowood not far from the Wilderness Village. It’s 800 years old! When we arrived at the site there was a small group of women there. You know how kids can sometimes just walk up to strangers and come up with an outrageous remark? Well, that’s Brenda: “Are you a Tree Hugger?” Well, guess what, it works! She got a quick 4 point lesson in tree hugging!

Tuesday—The Day of the Movie That Wasn’t. We want to see Nights in Rodanthe. We get to Wilderness Mall—It don’t start till Friday! So we ended up having lunch in Knysna. Not eventful? Sure, but we’re getting used to doing nothing and not feeling guilty about it.

I did spot the most amazing form of transport at the mall though! It’s a two wheeler chariot-like thing. Two wheels on one axle! And it don’t fall over! It balances itself while standing still. It goes at about three times walking speed! See the photo. I guess we will soon have one wheeled motorbikes!

Wednesday—The Day of the Ghost Town. Would you believe, late in 1800’s there was a gold rush in Knysna—Didn’t produce enough gold to sustain the diggers and the infrastructure. We had another big tree, also an 800 year old Outiniqua Yellowood. But this one has been tail-dragging. It’s not even half the size of the one near Wilderness.

Thursday—The Day of the Ring. November 4 is our anniversary. I suggested we go shopping for an anniversary present. Well! It was a joy to see Brenda’s delight. We shopped around and found a very elegant sapphire ring. I thought she can have it sized in Cape Town and on November 4 it will be ready and we’d have a celebration and then … Well! Moenie glo nie! She had it made smaller right there and then, put it on and that’s where it stayed! Can’t blame her, it is a beautiful ring.

Friday—The Day of Return to Base. Throughout our stay we repeatedly spoke about how necessary and appropriate and enjoyable the away-from-it-all had been. We had been shown the importance of our life and the value of living it rather than reacting to crises. It was enlightening and wonderful and we thank God for showing and opening the possibilities and opportunities we have been “too busy” to take up.

We were returning to base, but we are different—we have a changed attitude. Brenda drove most of the way back and I took some shots through the windscreen, something I’ve not done before.

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