Thursday, September 18, 2008


Today in The Nature of Inquiry Ted brought up the idea of ataraxia. He described it as sitting out in your backyard with a cup of coffee and a book, but you aren't really attending to the book because " is just such a beautiful morning". I like that. I'm not a coffee drinker, or a backyard meditator for that matter, though maybe that has more to do with my backyard, which tends to be buggy, but I can appreciate his example. He had another that I liked more, which is closer to my ataraxic scenario. You're sitting out in your deck chair, and it's evening, you've been on the beach all day, and your friends are inside making the spaghetti, but you don't need to go in just yet, so you can just sit. I love it. Just typing it is relaxing me, I'm all limp. I think if you swap the deck chair for a hammock it would be perfect. The picture of relaxed, perfect contentment. The sound of the ocean, dinner smells wafting through the air, maybe an abandoned novel on the ground that you were reading before your mind went quiet and you stopped to just be in the moment. A cat sleeping on your stomach. What could be better?
I have an honors society thing at the college president's house tomorrow evening. I'm excited, Bill Edgar is going to be there. It sounds like fun too, like finding the small school within the bigger school. Professor Everett will be there too, and it's an excuse to wear a skirt. Not that I need one.
It's been very nice fall weather at night. It's sometimes sort of summery during the day, but at night you can really believe that it's late-mid-September. I'd like to have a campfire this weekend. Do a sort of cookout, and then stay out late, looking at the stars. It would be nice to do this with a drinking element. I feel like apple cider and rum sounds very autumnal and delicious, but then we'd be trapped wherever we were, and I don't have a sleeping bag at school. If I had my sleeping bag and tent though, it would be perfect. At the very least it's a nice idea. I suggested it to my friend EH tonight, and she was all for it, but this was before the drunk driving problem occurred to me. Ah well. Someday I'll get my hammock by the sea, and someday I'll have a bonfire and cider and rum with my friends. For now, I can visualize. And go to bed before midnight, which feels like a victory in and of itself.


Bill said...

Please say hello to Bill Edgar for me. I have been blessed in my life with a number of terrific teachers, but he was one of the all-time greats. I can't imagine my life without the courses I took from him.

Caroline said...

did you know he has Parkinson's?

TCA said...

Sorry to hear that such a gifted teacher has such a terrible illness. I think I'll just pray for Bill Edgar even though I don't know him personally.

Besides...I love that ataraxia word which I did not know. It allows for conjuring up a favorite of mine...out on Sacandaga lake in my canoe, early on a summer morning before anybody but me and (just barely), the sun is up and the mist is just starting to rise from the water.