It was not easy to start writing this post. The words flow fast when everything is going as planned, but when you need to face your own shortcomings – well, then there are a million things to do and there’s no time to sit down and get writing.
I was waiting for something nice to happen to balance my failures out because writing a post just about failures would be depressing and ultimately useless. Well, nothing really happened, but my frame of mind changed as a minor revelation took place and now I am ready to write about the bad and the good.
I planned, as you know, to spend less time online and to organise nice and costless activities for myself this month in order to learn to appreciate things that have no value in terms of money. Last weekend both my good resolutions failed miserably. On Saturday we went to the Retro Expo which was e deeply frustrating experience. First of all, a scarily big crowd of people was crammed in a relatively small space and that alone was anxiety inducing. Second of all, and even worse: everyone, EVERYONE, except me, was finding something nice and unique for themselves. In the end, out of desperation, I bought a soda syphon which later turned out to be broken. After the fruitless morning I was in no mood to give up internet which always comforts me as a security blanket, not even for 24 hours. We spent the rest of the weekend shopping for things we were supposed to get at the Expo. Hardly a costless activity.
Fortunately, life is unpredictable. Completely down-to-earth and even boring activities, such as, let’s say, a spring cleaning, can contribute to your overall happiness more than any planned entertainment – gratuitous or otherwise. When I was cleaning and tidying up our place and my partner was sowing vegetables to put in our back yard (which was getting covered in snow in the meantime), it dawned on me that our tiny and less than luxurious apartment reflected who I am better than any other place I’d ever lived in before, even if I only lived there for a couple of months. This is because every single object has a story and I remember how, when and why we chose to get it. Each one is useful even though not each one looks good. Nothing is immaculate or colour-coordinated. There’s still room to spare in our cupboards, there’s not a single useless thing (well, maybe except for the silly, broken syphon – but it’s there to remind me not to buy things out of desperation, so it is not COMPLETELY useless).. While furnishing it, often we had to find a compromise solution, bend the rules a bit or settle for something a little ugly. But the result is a place that is less than perfect, sure, but full of warmth and character. And I’m crazily proud of it.
Here is our windowsill garden, which will sometime soon turn into a backyard garden. Well, as soon as the snow thaws.
P.S. I managed to stay off line for a full day this weekend, so YAY me J