Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Epiphany Envy

So I went on my annual trek to my favourite Hebridean Isle, where every year I have an epiphany.  I've got to the point where I almost stand waiting for it to happen as soon as I get off the ferry.  Calmac could add it to the ticket package and charge more.

This year I felt quite grumpy, because everyone else I was with had one. One person even had two.


I didn't have one at all.  That just wasn't fair!

When the first person had an epiphany in a certain place on the island, I resisted the temptation to hurry along, sit and wait for it to happen.  It was agreed that this was cheating, and that you can't piggy back on someone else's epiphany - however much you might want to.

So it was my first epiphanyless week there.  Maybe was the weight of expectation that fanned it away.  Had it hovered over me and I missed it?  Are we all walking around missing the most important moments of personal revelation because we aren't looking, or conversely, looking too hard?

What is the ideal frame of mind to catch the wafting, ephemeral moment I wonder?

Oh well.  I'm getting all metaphysical again.  It's a habit I keep slipping into lately.  Like finishing off all the biscuits, only more interesting.  Anyway, I hadn't really thought of epiphanies being like buses.  You either have none, or two coming along at once.

Back to the holiday. I just had to make do with the experience I had one day on a sailing boat trip to the Trennish Isles.  A school of dolphins played about the bows of the boat, leaping and twisting at the sheer delight of being in the water.  They were exuberant and joyful, and were so close you were almost soaked when they exhaled through their blow holes.  They drifted away after about half an hour, but then we saw a basking shark, its fin slicing the water.  All the while, puffins landed on the sparkling water around the boat.


Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Inspiring my Generation

Everyone keeps talking about how we are going to be so inspired by these Olympics we will all be fitter but I think we are all getting considerably lazier.  All this lying on the settee with a glass of wine and bag of crisps marvelling at the achievements of the athletes.  The only exercise most of us get these days is reaching for the tissues when our eyes involuntarily start watering to the national anthem and the sight of an athlete kissing a gold medal.

What I would also like to know is how someone like me who hates flags and national things, has been reduced to crying at the sight of the Union Jack?  AND  how is it that the national anthem is the only moment I feel like doing a bit of exercise, and carefully have to resist the urge to stand to attention, saluting the TV.

What about those horsey types too!  What are they made of?

Mostly platinum by all accounts.

Break your back, neck, rupture your spleen, pin it all back together, get back on a horse and win a gold medal.

They are so brave, jumping over terrifyingly high fences, designed to lull you into a false sense of security by looking like Toy Town.  I tried riding - once there were some logs lying on the ground.

I was scared as my horse trotted over them.

The gymnasts!  Spinning, whirling, bouncing, looking for all the world like they are made of rubber, as well as being superhumanly strong and bendy, and brave.

Really brave.

Then you have those cyclists, looking like aliens from another world.  Strangely half cartoon, half insect as they pick out an orbit in the velodrome.

I am in awe.