Thursday, December 17, 2009

Day 114: The Middle Road

Paradise is sunny again. Simple creature that I am, I feel the need to do something. On the business front, my partners on the other side of the ocean are busy with meetings, but I am waiting for things to develop, and have little to do this morning.

I venture off to yoga. As my friend astutely coined it, yoga is a moving meditation. Today's instructor is a dancer turned into a Buddhist meditation practitioner. He tells us that Zen is about "doing without doing, working without working". What he's really saying is that you can always see when someone is trying too hard. It stresses them out, and it stresses you out watching them. How very true. The Middle Road is hard to stay on constantly, but actually quite easy to hop back on to, once you realize the clenching of the teeth.

On the way home, I stop by the pool for a mini-lap, just enough to loosen up, and then swing up the hill for lunch. Meanwhile, my friend in Japan has been to a yearend party (this is typically called a "forget-the-year-gathering" or bonenkai), and has a brilliant brainwave applying the 80/20 rule (getting 80% done with 20% of the effort). This just proves how important it is to "work without working" and and to let ideas float at the back of your brain for a while.

Now, to give you an example of how one can get sidetracked - Charlie and I take a walk up the hill and meet Samson, a big black dog who is out to prove that he is the alpha dog. He follows us up the trail and keeps us company, while Charlie looks a little bemused. As I look on detachedly, I see that Samson has decided that Charlie is actually a "she". Silly as the situation is, I feel compelled to interfere. Samson, then follows us home, so I deposit Charlie, and escort Samson home with admonition to refrain from further advances. Then, I realize that Maxime is not home and hurtle down to the library in semi-panic. He's not there, so I approach the librarians and ask. One kindly librarian says he saw Maxime after school, but hasn't seen him in a little while. I arrive home to find him wondering why my hair is sticking up from my head. What with Samson and Maxime, I have veered off the middle road. To restore myself to tranquility, I pour myself a generous glass of viognier. Ah, there you were, my middle road....(breathe)

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