On my evening walk I saw a woman running down the steep street, very fast. In her hand she held something which she passed to another runner at the bottom of the hill. He took off up the hill while she bent over to stretch.
I marvelled at their fitness. And I thought of different ways that things can be carried over from one place to the next.
Carrying over is not always so easy
I discovered this after spending an extended period of time at the bach, relaxing into the spaciousness of nature.
I was surrounded by trees that gently waved their tops in the wind and submitted to the rain with grace. Birds called from every direction. As I gardened, sitting on the earth, I became absorbed in simple things, like watching a bee going from flower to flower, fertilising the tomato plants. A spider web glistened in the morning sun.
The flax flowers were brilliant this year. My grand daughters and I sipped the sweet honey inside — the wai korari. We swam in the lake and the sea, and in the evening I stream-walked.
The world was full of wonder. I felt my senses opening and my heart expanding. I could feel a connection with all living things.
Losing the wonder
Then I returned to town and back to work. Sitting at my computer, I realised the writing was not going well. My senses had shut down and the creative energy was blocked.
This was not an easy transition from one environment to the other. It was nothing like the neat exchange that the runners made on the street. I was striking obstacles, and stumbling.
Have you experienced this? Have you ever found the return difficult after the openness of summer? Has it made you grumpy and wishing you could have more holiday?
(And for my northern hemisphere readers, here’s a post about winter for you.)
What is the remedy?
First, I needed to stop and take stock. I realised I’d shut down the sensory openness that I’d experienced being close to the land, and with it my creativity. Action was needed.
I headed back to nature, climbing up to the summit of my favourite volcanic cone in the city, where I found a cool place under a tree and settled down to do some editing by hand.
What a difference! Birds were calling all around, bestowing dimension in great arcs across the air above. Bugs crawled over my bare hands: some insect, a tiny green grasshopper, and a shiny jet-black ladybird. I was immersed in a living world.
The wind was blowing and grasses waving. I was not in the wind, but I was of the wind as I felt the air moving in the treetops, blowing the clouds and rippling through seed heads of the grasses, making patterns like water.
The words began to flow and the writing came alive.
That’s all very well, but . . .
Yes, I know. It’s not always possible to take that kind of time out, or to work under a tree. And so I want to pass you the parcel, just as those runners did at the bottom of the street. It’s a parcel of tips for staying connected and for bringing nature’s enlivening influence back home with you.
This is what I did:
1. I cleared and cleaned my desk, refreshed the energy with an essential oil spray, and brought in fresh flowers from outside.
2. This led to wave after wave of feng shui — clutter clearing — as I opened folders and file boxes and threw out reams of paper, including old print-outs of former manuscripts, clearing the channels for the new work.
3. Subsequently, I felt energised, and ready to tackle the uphill run into the hard stuff: bringing the complexity of my current book project into some kind of order, and establishing the flow.
4. And together with all this, finding ways to keep on recharging, replenishing through daily contact with nature: taking swims, sitting under a tree in a nearby park to read or write, integrating exercise, meditation, relaxation and Qigong with short bursts at the computer.
It’s an opportunity
Returning back from holiday or a trip often means seeing things anew for a while. If you feel discontent, it’s an optimal moment to find a way through, to change some habits, to become more conscious, and to ensure you hold on to the opening that the holiday brought you.
I hope you find your own way through, if this is an issue for you.
And if you need support, my Summer Attunement might be just the resource you need.
May you bring enlivenment home with you, and have an inspiring 2019!
We praise abundance by eating of it.
This post is an excerpt from my Seasons Newsletter. To receive the Seasons Newsletter, you may sign up on the home page of this website and receive a free audio meditation.