Final hours

As midnight arrives, less than 24 hours remain for our brief stay in the UK/Great Britain/London.

Could we have stayed longer?

Sure.

Should we have?

Good question.

Much remains to be seen outside the tourist stops.

We certainly could see more remains, more burial grounds.

We have learned more than we’ll remember, as usual.

I, for one, have a greater appreciation for the writings of Douglas Adams, knowing now why he seemed to have an obsession with doors, doors which “love nothing more than to open and close for passing users, and thank them profusely for so emphatically validating their existence,” after hearing announcements on the Tube and on our apart’hotel lift such “Please mind the door. Door closing.  Please mind the door.  Door closing.  Door closing.  Door closing.” repeated over and over sometimes before the door would finally close as if it was testing your patience or making absolutely sure that you were securely away from the door mechanism.

I felt again a love I held for a woman I can never call mine when I sat in Queen’s Theatre in London and listened to the excellent performances of current cast members, especially Rachel Ann Go singing anything and Eva Noblezada singing “On My Own”:

On my own pretending he’s beside me…
And when I lose my way I close my eyes and he has found me…

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Molly M

Alive a live o-oh, alive a live o-oh…cockles and mussels…

That’s the words I hear in me head when I’m standing in a pub, listening to traditional Irish music on a Sunday (soon-day) night with a friend and a room full of friendly strangers.

The moments we can’t capture on fil-um, when a pint of Guinness (or Murphy’s or some hoppy lager) fills your stomach and asks you to stay a bit longer.

Yes, those.

And these — the smiles we share when we’re clapping together in sync with the Celtic tunes almost as old as time, the bits and pieces we pick up from the instruments (accordion, pennywhistle, guitar, fiddle, voice), the singalongs and the drinkalongs, the couples kissing, the couples arguing, the singles dancing and the groups laughing together at an inside joke…

Yes, indeed.

Tonight was just such a night at a popular spot in Killarney, no need for photographs, living as one did in the moment, giving oneself to the performers, listeners and barkeeps (and some combination of them all (none of us giving much thought to quantum mechanics (probably (most likely (maybe)))))…

Wantin’ to relive memories from a decade ago, doing so, getting locked inside a pub with a singer, his daughter, and granddaughter belting out old tunes, acting as door bouncer meself for the tourists who di’n’t know better that a feller from Alabama was lettin’ them in after 11 p.m. at a Killarney pub he’d never set eyes on 15 minutes before.

What was the name of that pub?

Can’t remember, me bein’ alone and all, my previous night’s companion headin’ back to the B&B, full of diet Coke and wantin’ a full night’s sleep afore we take the RoK at 8 in the mornin’.

So there I was, all by meself, watchin’ the honest, heartfelt performance of three generations of pub singers and thinkin’ back earlier on the day when I showed a clerk behind the cash register at Bunratty Castle shopping centre a video of Jenn Nye and Travis Nixon dancing West Coast Swing, explaining to the clerk, who mistook me for Travis that I’d help Jenn teach a class of West Coast Swing and woulda kept doing so until me wife complained I was getting too familiar with Jenn, so, to show the clerk the difference between West Coast Swing and what the Irish call jive (since I’d seen the clerk dancing a bit of solo to a pop song playing over the PA system and her telling me she liked line dancing and then asking me if I was a dance instructor meself), I pulled me wife over and showed the clerk and her friend the difference between West Coast Swing and East Coast Swing (a/k/a Irish jive).

Days such as this I live for, making connections across the globe to complete strangers with whom I make instant friends.

No photos or vids necessary.

Life.

Preparation for offworld exploration.

Bit by bit.

What will tomorrow bring?

More of the same, and happily so!

How else are we going to explore Mars without an extemporaneous expository exposition?

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Thunbergia grandiflora

[Personal notes — feel free to skip]

I never expect to be here, contemplating the levels of being that imply a scale of happiness for which I can move higher.

Is such possible?

I guess that’s why I’m here, trying to separate the reality of my existence from the Walter Mitty like life I write about and partially live in, giving my future selves hints about where we’ll find ourselves, given the infinite directions we can take from every point in time.

The cuckoo clock lets me know a half-hour has passed and by letting me know I mean that a mechanical device raises two bellows, each blowing a puff of air over a wooden edge that we interpret as a bird singing┬ákuh-koo, in place of its actual signal of whistle-whistle in two different sound frequencies at the same time a painted wooden object is pushed out of a door where we pretend to see a bird calling “cuckoo.”

Today, in and of itself, is only special in that it designates the precursor to the next day on our European-influenced calendar where practitioners of a particular system of beliefs practice an annual ritual.

Many choose today to celebrate libation consumption levels which strain many a liver beyond the best filtering a biological sieve can provide.

If I am to survive to my second century, drinking massive quantities of fermented beverages is out of the picture.

Is there a reality where the things I desire can materialise?

What of my visions of Martian exploration and settlement?

What of living in a cabin in the woods, possibly in Europe, raising little ones I call my own with a loving mother just as vision-filled as I am?

I plan the future because it always happens the way I want it to.

Therefore, I carefully consider my words before giving them nearly total exposure to Earth-based humans via the current method of writing electronic journal entries in a system we call the World Wide Web.

Oh, happiness, can you be so close?

Oh happiness, can you still be only a Thurberian vision, repeated ad [in]finitum?

Can I only be an inspiration for my future self, the current self always slightly unhappy, always slightly dissatisfied with self, seeking that which I can never have so that I can plant the seeds for a better future, planting, harvesting and replanting a forest of ideas in Sysiphean fashion?

What if one person can bridge the gulf between imagination and reality, providing a hand as long as I’m willing to blindly, trustingly, step over the precipice that separates us now?

All the signs are there (assuming I still know how to read them).

Of all the possibilities for our species four centuries from now, what if they only exist after I take that next scary step into the void?

Sure, it rocks the boat and shakes up the status quo but isn’t that what I’m for?

Let’s make the choice more dramatic.

Give myself two choices, taking away the easy path I’m on.

I can step off the plateau and either I’ll fall flat on my face (possibly or probably suffering irreparable damage, even death) or I’ll step into undiscovered country with no way of knowing what’s going to be next except the fact that it’s the only way I can move higher on the happiness scale and live into my second century of life (recalling that my second century of life includes perpetuation of the species in its current (or yet to be genetically rearranged) form).

I can only write this blog entry because I believe no one else reads it but me and it has no effect on anyone I know, itself a big step forward from the private diary/journal entries of old where writing whatever I wanted had absolutely no effect on anyone but the pen/diary/journal manufacturers.

Sometimes, I have to pay attention to this entity known as the self, knowing I take up space that other sets of states of energy could occupy, doing whatever else they might do in my place, for better or worse, richer or poorer — still so much to do to protect and preserve the future of our species in getting off this planet, negotiating with those who want to cement their place on Earth, despite the statistical knowledge of keeping all our eggs in this basket for too long is wrong.

Although I probably wouldn’t take it with me if I did go, it tells me what I should know — ultimately, I am a Happy Wanderer!

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