A lot happens at work but that's the only thing I don't want to talk about. Other than that, it's so quiet it's getting spooky. I sort of glide from one day to the next, wondering how long this monotony will continue. In a sense I don't really mind. I'm the type who can easily put up with routine, I think 10 years in academia taught me that well enough - studying is mostly a dull monotonous work. Nothing glamorous. Even cum laude on the diploma doesn't make it more glamorous, contrary to what people might think. I should know. So unglamorous monotony is an old friend, we know each other well. Only on rare moments, late in the evening when I'm reading a book or listening to music or thinking about my people, I suddenly feel a rush of abstract fear, thinking, "Oh my, here I am, while the life is passing me by", not even knowing exactly what it is that passes me by or what I should do to grab it. Or whether this vague "life" is even something worth my running after and grabbing it.
Maybe I'm slightly autistic, go figure. I like when things are being done the way they always have. There's certain security in routine and familiarity. On my days off, I go to the same Indian restaurant and sit in the same corner by the window and read a book, and I love it. (As to the book, it was Knut Hamsun the last time - the book changes, the restaurant doesn't.) In the evenings, I like to go to gym to the same training and have the same trainer there. I like seeing the familiar face, and it makes me childishly giddy to be able to listen to familiar music and throw out all my work worries - which are numerous - for an hour. I keep listening to the same music. I keep thinking about the same people.
I almost broke out of the routine, having planned a trip to the UK in November. The recording time for the Biblios program was being negotiated, the service request for my preaching was already sent out. But then right before I was to book my tickets I remembered there's a concert in Tallinn I really need to attend in mid November, and that killed my plans. The concert, by the way, is my dad's. I need to be there for all the reasons in the world. So there is no UK for me this year, hopefully I'll make that trip after the New Year.
On the other hand, it is so easy to see those times, those "nothing nothing happens" times as boring or even irrelevant. I'm so often living in some parallel reality in my head, either in the future or in the past. It's easy to be present when there's a lot of action and when adrenaline is running and you get to do something really exciting. But at times when nothing really happens I always have the temptation to disregard the present as worthless and go to some other time and other place in my mind. It's a good thing I happen to read a book right now where the author talks about the infinite value of the present moment. Frederick Buechner says: "Morning, afternoon, evening - the hours of the day, of any day, of your day and my day. The alphabet of grace. If there is a God who speaks anywhere, surely he speaks here: through waking up and working, through going going away and coming back again, through people you meet and books you read, through falling asleep in the dark."
So it's a good excercise. To learn to appreciate such "nothing nothing" times. I try my best.